First draft and leftovers
Until I wrote my first draft, I was feeling absolutely miserable, frustrated, anxious, and all the negative emotions associated with being isolated and falling into a deep blackhole. The task of writing an article about risk management had become the air I breathed, since mid-December.
The first draft was the turning point. Thereafter I felt like a different person. The world was no longer black but rosy and sunny.
Why couldn't I have written the first draft earlier? It has to do with the considerable transaction cost of switching from an information-gathering state to an information-processing state. When you're the hunter, you're busy tracking down the right people to talk to, making phone appointments, and interviewing them over the phone. To change from interviewing to writing requires not only changing the momentum but also the thought process.
As usual for every article I write, I end up with far more material than I can use. What shall I do with the leftovers? They are only good as fresh ingredients are to a new dish. Information, like food, can become stale and unusable.
So I contacted other publications. Unfortunately the editors were either too busy meeting their deadlines or away on trips. The only ones who returned my e-mails wanted me to write about another subject. Maybe I will just have to write, edit, and publish the leftovers myself.
24 January 2003 Friday