I’m keeping a fairly close record on my office computer of how I spend my time at work. I feel overworked in the sense that I’m letting myself be subjected to more demands than I can reasonably satisfy, as well as allowing my own ambition to be greater than I can achieve. The recording of projects scheduled, projects finished and unfinished, dates and time spent, and for whom the project was carried out is helping me bring this into focus. Late yesterday as I was looking at the record I experienced a moment of dejection over the growing mountain of February work still undone. I realized there were some programming projects to do, and that I hadn’t done any programming for about a month. Then I thought that perhaps I should jettison this particular capability from the bag of tricks that I’m expected to perform. Programming is something that you have to do all the time to do well. True programmers do little or nothing else but program. My personal ambition has been to master the art, but it brings me into conflict with the duties I perform from day to day to make money for the company and earn my pay. I expect to talk this over with Dan on Monday.
[Correspondence, 1987. Copyright (c) 2018 James Mansfield Nichols. All rights reserved.]