Over the years I have noticed a pattern: I tend to do my best work after fixating on a problem for a very long time, and usually after getting far too little sleep and drinking way too much coffee. If I am well rested and working a sane schedule, I never seem to pop off with those OMG solutions. And my best ideas - the ones that have essentially made my career - came late into the night, and often in the wee hours of the morning. During the month of December I took the first real break that I've had in years - for three weeks I barely even thought about work. It has taken just as long to get focused again. No matter how hard I tried, the ideas just weren't coming. Only now is the light beginning to shine again. In a metaphorical sense, it is as if creativity has momentum and inertia.