Writer’s Diary #27 – Four Hour Work Day?

Yesterday I had a good day—a good writing day and a good day in other ways. I woke up early, and went kayaking. Then, I wrote for three hours, did some office work, and then took the kids and a friend for a two-hour walk, ending with a treat at a local cafe. From there we drove home, to have dinner with my parents. It was just nice.

On the walk, thinking about the day and the last week, I wondered: Would it be possible to work like this every day? Write for three hours, work for an hour, and then call it a day.

I have the profound privilege of being a tenured professor on sabbatical. That means my time is mine. I can do whatever I want. One consequence of this is that I can experiment. What if the experiment was with a four hour day? Three hours writing, one hour other work.

For me, at least for now, the important work is the writing. I have several projects I want to finish. The makeshift book, the fragments book, and this diary.

There are a few other pieces. Could I work on them for three hours, do an hour of office work, then call it a day.

I don’t know if that’s possible, but I want to try it.

An experiment.

Anyone who is serious about observing their own rhythms of work, I suspect, knows that it is impossible to work with any intensity for more than about four hours, anyway. What if I did that, and forgot about the rest of the time, pretending to work.

I’ll try it, and report back.…