>want to write a novel that's deep and complex
>suck at creating ideas that aren't shit
>can't even get 4 pages into a short story before attention span craps out
I'm writing a novel (35,000+ words so far), and I have the same problem. I struggle every day to put words onto paper and it's harder with all the other stuff I have to keep up with in my life.
The key is the drive to create. Find time to do it. Keep focus. Write down everything that comes to mind, that's how you know when you look back at your work that it was actually you who wrote it.
>You don't want to write a novel or you'd be writing it.
I hate these trite little manifest destiny type platitudes. Chances are he simply needs to read and mature more. The world can do without another shit novel from a kid who wasn't really ready to write one yet.
How do you even write something 'deep' without it becoming pseudo-philosophical?
I feel like you almost need a phd in philosophy to write something interesting like that, and even then, pretty much everything has been done.
So what do you really consider 'deep', just obscurism or esoterism?
With fiction I think the best you can do is to show someone themselves in a surprising way, like make them feel something they didn't know anyone else knew about, or show them why they feel a certain way even though they'd never thought about it before.
You're infatuated with the idea of being brilliant rather than doing the work that incidentally could be brilliant. Essentially, a lame poser. Don't worry, most of us are like that. But try not to.
As for attention span, pick up meditation and cut down on internet use.