How to Do Nothing

Resisting the Attention Economy

I’m trying hard not to be mad at this book. Not because it isn’t good—it is, in fact, extraordinary—but because it embodies a kind of lucidity that makes you think you already knew what it was telling you, and just needed to be reminded of it. I felt a bone-level resonance as Odell gradually and beautifully made the case that attention to a place is what makes life—well, alive. This book is likely to get shelved with other anti-tech and “time well spent” titles that simply redirect productivity from one corner of the market to another. But those books aren’t in the same league as Odell’s, which isn’t anti-tech but anti-capitalism, and pro- noticing, listening, and dismantling. I’m not mad enough to stop myself from planning a second read, and soon.