Roy Freirich spent time talking to Jose Angel Manaiza Jr. at Thrive Global about insomnia and his next novel Deprivation.
As a songwriter it was not uncommon to record and mix for twenty hours straight in the studio. After the 11th, I began to fall in love with everything but think it could be better than really, really good, but great — if I just kept at it awhile longer. Delusions set in, with diminishing returns. Quality suffered. The same with writing fiction, or screenplays.
These are low-stakes scenarios. It’s frightening to imagine that doctors are underperforming while exhausted from the legendary lengths of their shifts. And certainly we’re all becoming more aware of the costs of sleep deprivation on our highways. We know now that deprivation impairs judgement generally, and a longer list: memory, emotional balance, motor control, cognitive functions: all suffer.
People believe stamina and hours worked are the way to success. It’s dangerous.