To the me of tomorrow,

I just wrote a short daily memo to you before going to bed. I had to, or your brain may have dropped something important or precious by dawn. Post-COVID brain fog is really infuriating, huh? Nonetheless, writing that memo was actually fun—I didn’t have to think much, just letting whatever came to mind manifest through my fingers.

In a similar vein, I was shocked that people actually read my Steam review of Citizen Sleeper. The me of the past didn’t record how she composed this, but I saw minimal editing and fairly unpolished structure—signs that she didn’t think anyone would read it, and she was just posting it as a thank-you gesture to the developers.

The thing is, writing in different modes felt completely different. When I had some kind of external audiences in mind, like with a blog post, I would try to maintain good structure and grammar and things—I would try to craft an article. But when just writing to you, I was more like a channel for my own being to flow freely without much filtering. Doing this, I encountered many ideas I didn’t know I had. Writing is indeed thinking aloud. (And someday you really need to find a good citation for this!)

When you think you’re crafting an article, it will actually be hard to keep writing in intuitive ways—especially when you really want to do it right. Like how in “Four Thousand Weeks”, Mr. Burkeman mentioned how hard it really is to “try to” live in the present:

Attempting to “live in the moment,” to find meaning in life now, brings its own challenges too, though. Have you ever actually tried it? […] it turns out to be bewilderingly difficult to do.

Back to the main intention behind this letter—our stagnated blog. It’s been half a year since the latest post. Based on published ones, I think she had some implicit structures and processes in mind when deciding what to work on first and how to go about it. She would alternate technical and non-technical posts. She would check grammar with antidote. She would ask whatever LLM she was using at the time to criticize the article. She would pick a proper cover image—or generate one with some diffusion model if she couldn’t find one.

That was way too much mental obstacle to make something if you ask me. Maybe it was from the perfectionism within us. I enjoy the process of thinking aloud with my keyboard, a lot. But the editing and polishing parts… not so much.

There were many things we wanted to write about—if you don’t remember that, take a look at the Draft folder in Obsidian and you’ll see. Many things. Most drafts contain only 2 to 3 fragmented paragraphs, with references for further research. She must have felt something emotionally—a spark, an impetus, an inspiration—to want to write them down. However, the original passions were likely already lost—we weren’t good at conveying vague sentiments through words to begin with, and we are quite bad at remembering feelings now. Without any fresh emotions and passions, by the time it was my turn to look at them, I didn’t bother to work on these random drafted topics.

I didn’t encounter that mental difficulty when writing a memo to you. Most of these memos after COVID were necessary, yet I didn’t find them problematic to write. I only edited them to a minimum degree1, mostly to save your reading time. So… probably this letter format can help you circumvent that “writing for an external audience” filter. Probably. Or you may get totally opposite effects. Who knows?

My time has drawn near. Please come up with a proper title and publish this letter without editing2 (except adding hyperlinks where you see fit) when you see this—even if you don’t feel like doing it.

Good luck,

The me of today

  1. Well, actually, if we really need some aesthetics or flowery languages, we can just pass it through LLMs nowadays, right? ↩︎

  2. The structure is a bit too meandering for my liking. I didn’t edit it though. ↩︎