(hope I'm doing this QUOTED REPLY properly...it's my first post on this new system)
(nope, it didn't work. How the heck do you QUOTE?)
Couple of things about priorities and working... you can just leave the Priorities system on "SIMPLE", merely putting check marks for pawns that you want to handle certain job functions, ie Doctor, Cooking, etc and unchecking those that you don't. Pretty sure that's meant for noobs while they get their feet wet.
Additionally, once you "gradumate" to manual priorities and set them as you see fit, you won't need to do it again. SUre, there will be times when you'll make minor adjustments and set up priorities for new recruits but overall, you set it and forget it.
Yes, you can interrupt pawns and force them to focus on a particular task immediately by selecting the pawn and right-clicking on a particular object/project (ie build this wall, repair this turret, hunt this animal, etc) and AFAIK they will try to take it to completion before returning to their "priorities" chart.