I like clarity, purpose, efficiency – and knowing where I’m going. Some people are fiddlers, they like to play with things, take them apart and put them together, going off on tangents and pursuing things more organically. Not me. I would have made a terrible engineer. I don’t like messing with things – and I absolutely hate rabbit holes.

Try to do one thing – and then you first have to figure out a million other things. That will drive me crazy.


I like to know where I’m going and to get there as directly as possible.

It stems from juggling a billion things at once and having to manage time as optimally as possible.

In order to strike a target, Reader San, one must have aim. Aim is defined as FOCUS and INTENT.


It’s just that life seldom works that way.

You try to add a simple functionality to a website, and the plugin bedevils everything you’ve ever done.

You want to pay tax as early as possible and get it out of the way, and the darn accountant leaves everything to the last minute.

You want to produce two chapters a day, every day, as planned in your schedule – but a phone call gets under your skin and you don’t get more than a paragraph down for weeks.

You can have the perfect system set up, but sometimes the system doesn’t survive first contact with oxygen, let alone light or contact with distractions, irritations, problems and – yes – bona fide actual enemies.

But then, if everything always worked the way they were supposed to – in my plans, my schedules and my head – I would have missed out on some of the most important and profound events, lessons and experiences of my life. Sometimes it is the little side alleys, the little roads that diverge from your well planned main route, that brings all kinds of wonders into the world.

Her Majesty’s Realm is full of little side adventures and sideshows. The House That Jack Built in Plymouth… the little covered mall in Cardiff… London itself could best be described as a giant collection of side roads.

I want to produce and get the job done, as quickly as possible and as efficiently as possible. But I must learn not to do so at the expense of magic. Life is too short to rush through it with single minded and dogged focus – and the products of the mind far too important to be left to checklists.

No distractions, a good general rule.

But sometimes you have to act unlike yourself, do things you wouldn’t, take routes you shouldn’t, and arrive places that ordinarily you couldn’t.