Your Attention Please
That's right, I'm after your attention. Or your attention span, which I'm sure must be better than mine of late, with all of life's distractions.
In part, I blame technology, which gives us such a wealth of easily-accessible entertainment and information options, it's becoming increasingly difficult to focus on the work. Twitter tweets for my attention, e-mails and other social networks clamor, and it's not hard to talk myself into the notion that all of these (including the blog) are work, that it's important to "put myself out there."
But I remind myself, that's not the work I chose. (The blog's fun; I admit that. And a nice little journaling warm-up in the mornings.)
And then there are other people's stories (and oh, how I love stories) drifting through the ether. Stories I can plug into via TV, DVD, Hulu.com, audio downloads, Kindle (if I had one), iPhone (ditto), or, lo and behold, the classic book. It's hard to resist the siren calls of story, for I can tell myself how important it is that I keep "up to date and plugged in to the storytelling culture." (My subconscious always sounds quite reasonable when wheedling to get its way.)
But absorbing all those lovely stories doesn't get my work done either. So there's nothing for it but to chain myself to my laptop, shut off the Internet for a while, and get down to the hard stuff. Because sometimes, writing's sledding, and other days you have to pull a heavy plow all by your lonesome. It's been the plow for me this past week, a synopsis that's giving me fits, but there's nothing for it but to throw myself against that harness and pull with all my might.
And pay attention so I can finally get my rows (and maybe my story) planted!
How about the rest of you? Have any tips to share on keeping focused?