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Why can't I just read a book?

How do we find the time to pursue a second career when you have both a family and an inherent inability to read a book cover to cover?

It is not a secret; I am not a reader. I've never been a reader, as long as I can remember. I don't even read blogs for the most part, though I've recently been turned on to an audio blog of sorts (http://www.industrybroadcast.com) that has held my attention fairly well. The inability to read a book has not hindered my college career, still sailing along with good grades without cracking open the 200$ paperweight on my desk.

Where this affects me the most is in my desire to create a game. I am a good writer for the most part, I have a very broad imagination and have thought up many different scenarios for games I would like to produce. My problem comes when I try and actually learn how to move forward with creating the title. I get a cup of coffee and sit in front of my computer, and stare at the text on the screen.

I have tried watching video tutorials and have had some decent successes (I watched an entire series on Python programming, and could probably piece together something if I needed to; though it would be akin to taking Spanish 2 in high school and going to Spain to live). I always find myself in my web browser while the video is playing, or looking up something that interested me from the tutorial, and end up missing the point of the whole video? There has to be a way that someone who has trouble focusing can actually sit down and make progress on learning something new.

When I was studying for certification tests to advance my primary career (desktop/server support), I would watch the tutorial video and take notes alongside it. It was tough to stay focused, but I was able to jot down information and it seemed to work well for me. I passed all the tests I tried for. Later in my career I would try just simply reading the book, and that didn't turn out so well.

The lesson learned in all of this is that maybe I require some kind of tactile feedback when I am learning. I need the act of writing down things in a notebook to make it stick in my brain, though I very rarely go back over any of the information I wrote. It usually ends up in the trash after I pass the test.

Perhaps taking the step of writing alongside of reading will do the trick? I will post my results in future blogs. What helps you when you are trying to learn something new?

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