Living in an Easy Button World
Posted by mikedellosso
I’m under the impression that many in our society seem to think there’s an easy button for everything . . . or at least thinks there should be an easy button for everything.
Somewhere along the way, since that Greatest Generation got us through the second world war, we lost our way, our work ethic, our motivation. We tossed good old fashion hard work out the window and replaced it with “the quick and easy.”
We want results now and we want them in the easiest way possible. Path of least resistance with minimum sweating, please.
Out of curiosity I did a quick search on Amazon and here are some book titles I came up with:
The Detox Strategy: Vibrant Health in 5 Easy Steps
How to Paint Watercolor Flowers: Create Your Own Masterpiece in 6 Easy Steps
7 Easy Steps to Write Your Book
Become You Own Matchmaker: 8 Easy Steps for Attracting Your Perfect Mate
Billionaires and Ballot Bandits: How to Steal an Election in 9 Easy Steps
How to Clean Your Room in 10 Easy Steps
Get the picture? It’s all about the easy steps. Steps I can understand. I have no problem with following a plan, a map, a scheduled course, but easy? Let me tell you, there’s nothing easy about writing a book (and I’m sure stealing an election isn’t all that easy either, but that’s a debate for another day).
So while we’re on the topic of writing books, I found a review of my little nonfiction book, Writing Time!, on Goodreads and was interested in one paragraph of it in particular. Here’s an excerpt:
It’s not a bad little guide, worth it if it comes up free. But Dellosso certainly doesn’t offer any shortcuts (and in fairness, I don’t know of any easy ways to write a book). Instead, I took the book to say “Writing is hard work, but figure out a reason to write and make yourself make the time to do it.” It’s not bad advice, but it may disappoint people wanting easy answers of how to make time to write.
Okay, kudos to the reviewer for being honest (apparently, she doesn’t think the book is worth the $0.99 price tag, but free is a good deal). I always appreciate that. I get the feeling she doesn’t subscribe to the “5 easy steps” method of life but rather realizes that some things are just not going to be easy. She realizes, however, that there are a lot of folks out there trolling Amazon, looking for self-help books on how to find the easy button for life. And my book will disappoint them because–surprise, surprise–there are no easy steps offered.
This irks me a bit. In fact, two things she mentions irks me.
First, Writing Time! is about time management for writers, making time in your busy, hectic schedule to sit your butt in a chair and do the difficult thing: write. There are no shortcuts here. It’s a matter of motivation and determination and being intentional about getting something done. You know, the way people used to get things done before computers and iPhones and automated everything.
Second, the only easy answer I can give to making time to write is to make the time. Just do it. Stop talking about doing it, stop dreaming about doing it, stop making excuses for not doing it . . . and just do it. Sorry, no easy button there. Believe me, I’ve looked for one.
I apologize for the rant, really I do, and I fully realize not everyone is in search of the holy easy button. There are lots of folks who don’t mind hard work and wake up everyday with ambition in their belly and a fire in the chest. They couldn’t give a rat’s left ear about an easy button and probably wouldn’t use one if it existed anyway. I applaud them and wish there were more of them.
But I’m noticing more and more that this “easy button” mentality is permeating our society and taking over. People looking for shortcuts, looking for as little resistance as possible, looking for 5 easy steps.
It’s not always a bad thing, it isn’t. I’m all for saving some time and energy when I can but please oh please realize that there are some things in life for which there is no easy button.
What do you think? Am I wrong? Or are we headed down a dangerous road here?
About mikedellossoMike Dellosso is an author of wide-eyed suspense. He writes stories that not only entertain but enlighten.
Posted on June 24, 2013, in Writing Life, Writing Time and tagged Easy button, Goodreads, Greatest generation, Hard work, IPhone, Time management, Work ethic, World War II, Writers Resources. Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.