Eric Karjaluoto

Beating the Wobblies

I’m writing a book that might be good. The Design Method presents the smashLAB philosophy and process. Most people won’t get much from this book. For designers, it will be useful, though: lots of suggestions on how to work, use process, and interact with clients.

Nearly half of the book is complete. It’s tightly structured, has a clear message, and the writing has been smooth. There haven’t been any hiccups, until yesterday, when I hit a wall. I’m not sure how this happened, but I started wondering whether my topic was “enough.” These doubts followed me home, where I ate Indian delivery and polished off two glasses of wine.

My stomach is rumbling this morning. This can be attributed to the food and a case of the “wobblies.” This is a familiar affliction. My projects all start with excitement (of the manic variety). Around mid-way, enthusiasm dwindles. Doubt arrives and I start to think what I’m doing isn’t good enough.

After this many years, I know better, but the emotions aren’t any less real. Most probably quit at this time because it would be easy to do so. Why work through the sludge, when you could start something else? A different project always seems more interesting, relevant, and problem-free.

Few of us can accurately see what we’re currently doing. Banal things can turn out to be interesting, and vice versa. Since I can’t gauge this now, I just need to put my head down, push through, and get the job done. Even if this thing ends up sucking, it’ll be better than abandoning a half made cake.

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