I don’t read books. I devour them.
Being able to demolish a paperback book in one afternoon is fantastic. It’s only a matter of hours before I find out whodunit.
But…I skim a lot. And in skimming, I miss a lot. Driven by the urgency to keep turning the page, I’ve sometimes had to turn back a page, two pages, even a whole chapter, because my eye has leapt over some crucial element of the plot.
Scene settings? Lengthy character descriptions?
There are some books whose every word is not worth reading.
But more often than not, those descriptions are there for a reason. The author crafted them for me to read…not for me to flip through because I have the attention span of a monkey on speed.
This desire to get to the end has also spread to my creative pursuits. I’ve felt a sense of uneasy agitation the past couple of weeks, of not crafting fast enough.
Must finish a project so I can blog about it!
Must catch up on my list of Christmas crafts!
Must MAKE ALL THE THINGS for my forthcoming shop!
So I’m taking things down a notch.
For me, there is no craft that requires my focus quite like knitting. It’s a kind of meditation, really – each stitch crosses from one needle to the other, deliberately, methodically, with intention.
(unless you’re knitting socks with 5 slippery needles and one of them falls out, and then your sock is less of a sock and more a pile of loopy yarn noodles – there’s nothing methodical about that)
So I am knitting. I am slowing down and paying attention to each stitch. I watch my sweater grow a tiny, tiny bit with each row. And then I turn the work and knit back the other way.
I am listening to an audiobook on my iPod. The plot unfolds in its own time. I’m not devouring the story; I’m absorbing it.
And I’m hearing every word.