A Little Bit About The Seven Levels of Attention


I wanted to tell you a little bit about the new book from Clarendon House Publications, the 92 page full colour e-manual that I’ve called The Seven Levels of Attention.

It arose from my studies of marketing. As with my 40 year investigation into fiction, which resulted in the ground-breaking book How Stories Really Work, as I looked more and more into the marketing of books, some patterns, large and small, began to emerge. The patterns touched on fundamentals in common with both storytelling and marketing.

You are probably, like most people on social media, subject to a daily bombardment from paid advertisers who are desperate to engage your attention with ever-more-creative designs, trigger-words, images, fads, etc. You can’t really blame them — it’s a competitive world out there and many of them probably have something of value to offer. They think that the way to survive in such a high-pressure and often product-saturated environment is to shout loud, shout lots and try to break down the barriers that they think lie between them and you. Huge amounts of time, money and concentration often go into marketing products that you see springing up in your news feeds in one form or another: some claim to have isolated the latest methods, others try and grab your attention with motion or colour, while still others use aesthetics and humour to try to capture enough of your time so that they can try and convey their specific message. A distilled form of this can be seen in television advertising: the advertiser has a precise time limit, usually a matter of seconds, in which to intrigue, grasp and guide you to some sort of decision or action. TV ads have become more and more indirect, occasionally surreal, as they edge towards what they think is a sophisticated approach to controlling you.