Saturday, February 18, 2006


When Don doles out the kids' vitamins each morning he grabs and holds their attention. They must wait until Don, by name, tells each it's "okay" to receive the plump, yummy pills. Then they're allowed, one-by-one, to gently take the treat from his hand.

Nothing distracts them. Baxter, Elsie, and Ridge focus exclusively on the hand holding their treasures. They know the object of their focus is something good. So they wait, undeterred.

Their ease in focusing on the good in store illustrates the reason behind my recent distractability when writing. The outcome (a published book and payment for it) no longer holds the same value it once did (to my discredit). Writing is my job now; it's no longer a passion (at least the kind of writing I do for income). After twenty-five books, I'm not surprised.

The rewards of seeing my name on a book jacket and adding funds to my bank account aren't as enticing as they used to be. And I think that may be why I'm so distracted. Cost (in time and effort) is beginning to outweigh benefit. So I'm no longer as motivated; my focus wanes.

Professionals, however, do the job (and do it well) no matter how motivated (or unmotivated) they may be. It's a matter of integrity. And I'm a professional, like it or not.

So I'll finish the book and finish it well. I'll maintain focus, even if the only reward is the satisfaction of knowing I finished the job and honored my contract. If once-a-day vitamins are enough to keep the kids' focus, then soul-satisfaction should certainly be enough for me.

So now I'm back to it. I won't post again until the manuscript is done. ;o)

'Til next time (which I hope is soon),



JuliaR said...

I could see that photo next to the word "focus" in the dictionary!

Joan said...

You and me both, Julia. :o)