I'm reading, and enjoying, the book Microtrends, by Mark Penn. It's copyright is 2007, so it is a couple years old.

In his chapter "Lon Attention Spanners" he makes the argument that attention spans are growing longer, rather than shorter.

From a reading perspective, he pointed to a couple of different things.

1. Magazines like Atlantic Monthly and Foreign Affairs - which focus on very long pieces - have actually increased circulation...Foreign Affairs by 13 percent from 2002 to 2005.
2. In 2005, the average best-seller was 100 pages longer than the average best seller in 1995, and that in 1995, the average best seller was 385 pages.

He also talks about the popularity of series fiction as evidence of sustained attention spans.

He also goes into other areas of popular culture, citing certain TV shows, the growth in popularity of puzzles, and other aspects of our lives.

Really, I have no point to all this...I read the chapter last night and it kind of stuck with me, and thought I'd share, as I found it interesting.

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No, I don't believe this. There are other reasons for those facts. The truth is that sustained concentration on anything has been lost due to TV, film, radio, computers, and cell phones. People may engage in an activity more frequently, but only if that doesn't require much concentrated thought and effort.
I don't know about what Mark Penn says but I'd like to say that I've always had a low attention span for books and movies. You have to hook me FAST or I won't finish either one. I've always been like that. I guess that's why I'm very picky when it comes to books and movies. I'm the same with music too. I can't stand slow songs. I get impatient.

Writing is probably the only thing that I can do constantly without getting bored or impatient. I guess I love it that much, LOL!

What's weird was that I wasn't this bad when I was younger. I guess when you get older, you just don't have time to stop and "smell the roses".

Best Wishes!

J.K.Rowling continues the enchantment throughout her books. In other words, there are constantly new stimuli. In some genres this is more easily done than in others.

Concentration really has more to do with the sustained effort to understand, not with continuing the game.
Are people really reading the vampire books to learn about life after death? That's a frightening idea.
Yikes! I hope not.

And frankly, and just my opinion here, Meyer's vamps have nothing on Salem's Lot.
I haven't read the books, but they seem to be more about teenage sexual thrills than horror.
To be honest, I've not read them either. My nieces (17 and 14) spent about a week with me this summer. Both are voracious readers and have read them and the younger one was finishing the last Meyer book. To their credit, they thought they were "OK" but not as enamored with them as their friends.

Thankfully, that seems to be as far as their interest goes - my sister said they didn't even want to see the movies.

Now this will please you Ingrid. The 17 year old is big into anime (no, that's not the part that will please you). However, while she was here, she picked up Dragon Scroll - I think the Japanese setting interested her. She read it in 2 days, and I noticed when she left, my copy of Rashomon Gate disappeared.
Wow! I'm so pleased. :) Actually, my agent's grandson was reading my books at ten. At least, that's what she said. And the French put out the mmpb under a young readers imprint.
Not at all sure I'm all that flattered by that, though of course, good for the kids!

I think youngsters should read adult books anyway. There's far too much mind control of young people going on. Give them the classics. I liked those much better when I was a teen.
That's cool!

My sister's kids, with the exception of Twilight and maybe Harry Potter (and I think one of them read the Artemis Fowl books), seem to have just skipped the "young adult" books.

Mom has told me the eldest reminds her of me - she was telling me after it was assigned at school, she read Great Expectations in one weekend, that sort of thing.

Now, their brother, unfortunately, is a different story. I think you'd have to hold a gun to his Xbox to get him to read something.
Alan. Every idea has been done to death!! The expression "There is nothing new under the sun" comes to mind when people say something has been done to death or that it is cliche. It is only cliche when you follow a formula, which for a portion of reading society that's exactly what they like is the formula.

I don't know how anyone can make any comparisons to today's book market with 1995.

As for Twilight, I remember Anne Rice being enormously popular with female readers. Then Buffy had its fanatics. So Meyer is just hitting the teen demo of today, which as we know, don't stay teens forever.
Makes some sense to me. I sure don't buy this attitude that technology has made us all mental midgets. Quite the opposite, I should think. Communication can't be bad.
Oh I am sorry ... it took me two reading sessions to complete. I sometimes find Reader's Digest articles too long for me. My reading span seems to get shorter the older I get.



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