Issue 39 Jul 17, 2023

The hotel working trick


Touching on last week's essay, about the importance of being idle, I've been anything but since. The agency is getting ready for some big changes, and now that client work has slowed down, the idea was to bring those home. But, as things go, our biggest client decided that they'll do a rebrand, and thus I've got important and time-sensitive work lined up for the rest of July.

That doesn't mean that the agency stuff should, or can, be put on hold. It's important to us. So, to bring it home, or nearly at least, we decided to check in to a hotel on Friday. This is an old trick of mine when I want to focus on something, and that thing alone. I've used it to finish novels in the past, but it works for traditional work too, assuming you can go mobile. I can, so we spent two nights at our favorite hotel in Stockholm.

Changing the scenery, and adding a touch of luxury as a reward for the push, makes all the difference. It turned out great, we made a lot of progress, and I'd say we're 70 per cent there as of Sunday

It's a neat little trick for those bursts, checking into a nice hotel and make something enjoyable about it. I recommend trying it, if you haven't already.


💩 Jack White does not spare words on Mel Gibson's and Mark Wahlberg's Trump ties.

📱 Apple's App Store turns 15. While there are great things about the App Store, it's also one of the reasons why the open web is struggling.

🕵🏻 Shocker: Experts warn of Meta's privacy violations in the wake of Threads. Remember, this is the company who gave prosecutors access to a woman's chat history so that they could nail her on abortion charges.

🤖 Kyle Chaykra had an AI version of himself created to see how that'd perform writing articles. I love these prods at AI.

🫥 While the above is cute, there are serious rumblings in AI land. OpenAI will train on AP news stories as a result of a new partnership, and the current Shutterstock partnership has been extended by a full six years, to make Dall-E better. Meanwhile, actors are joining the writer's strike in Hollywood, and one of the reasons is that studios wants to own their AI counterparts from productions.

Got something I should read? Send it to me, either by replying to this letter, or tweeting to @tdh. Thanks!


📚 Not much reading going on this week, surprisingly, but I'm at the end of Dead Beat by Jim Butcher.

🎵 Work mode means synthwave. I've been listening to Zombie Hyperdrive's Hyperion again. It's a great working album for me.

📺 I had a couple of days on my own in the beginning of the week. That meant that I could rewatch the Indiana Jones movies when winding down. Biggest take-away? The crystal skull one isn't as bad as I remembered. Makes me hopeful for Dial of Destiny.

🎮 I finished (pun intended) Mortal Kombat 11 yesterday, including the excellent Aftermath DLC. Well, in such a sense that you can finish a fighting game. I fired up Mortal Kombat (9, which it isn't called) and played a few chapters. I might finish that, and Mortal Kombat X, before the September release of Mortal Kombat 1. Yeah, confusing numbering all around.

The work spurt is why this issue, again, is coming to your inbox on Monday rather than Sunday. I expect to be back to the regular schedule this week, but then again, I said that the last time, so we'll see. This week has already broken my schedule, thanks to work happening in the new studio. Yes, that's something else that's happening right now. More on that in a later letter.

For now, it's full steam ahead this week. I hope you get some rest. I sure know I won't.

— Thord D. Hedengren ⚡

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