That, combined with the ADD he is diagnosed with, means that I find reading his advice and loving it while still knowing that shipping stuff for him is an extremely difficult thing to do completely acceptable.
Also worth listening to is Merlin's own podcast (with Dan Benjamin) called Back to Work . A lot of his recent talk has been about his book, the challenges in meeting the deadlines (along the lines of 'a few thousand words by next week') and how he manages the process. Merlin himself is like no-one else, and I can assure you that you won't be bored by his show.
For me, I think I prefer reading his writing. While also lengthy, it's been edited and trimmed back. It focuses on just the metaphors that full apply.
(Although for long car/train rides, Back to Work is fantastic.)
was some criticism that a "productivity expert" not being
able to ship is quite paradoxical.
Doing, and teaching others to do are very different skill sets.
It sounds like Merlin is making the right choice for him, right now. The end product will probably be better for this experience... how did it get this point? Why was he writing empty chapters to satisfy his deadlines. Assuming this book is about productivity, there's probably some definite lessons learned to share if he digs deep.
I wonder if the 43 folders might work in an e-mail form though for putting e-mails off to a later date and then review them.