7 articles to read this week

Below are some interesting articles that I caught this week:

A Novelist Who Made Crime an Art, and His Bad Guys ‘Fun.’  Elmore Leonard passed away but left us with some great writing tips along with his books, most notably, “Try to leave out the parts that readers tend to skip.”

The War on Wordsmiths.  Author Ali Eteraz explains why we still need words in the age of photographs.   

How You Can Conquer Any Deadline.Designer George Lois breaks down how to get shit done.  It turns out it’s pretty simple:  Do it now and if you can’t figure it out, you’ve probably got a problem.  

Enough with the ROI. Just follow your curiosity.  Ian Sanders explains why you should just do something for the sake of interest.  Curiosity is also a currency; fiat money isn’t everything.  It’s all about learning and driving new experiences. 

How the Coffee Cup Sleeve Was Invented.  It turns out that the coffee sleeve was originally known as the “Java Jacket.”  Here’s also some best practices for working from the coffee shop

When Apps Modify Behavior.  MG Siegler examines how apps like FrontBack and Instagram make us think more creatively about our surroundings.  

Now it’s ruined.  Seth Godin blogs about the impact of technology in equalizing creativity.  Everyone is an amafessional with a computer palette in their pocket.  But the best stills stand out. You might want to work on your attitude as well.      


7 articles to read this week

Below are some interesting articles that inspired me to think differently this week. 

In praise of laziness: Workers should be doing less, not more.  We need more free-thinking breaks, what Jack Welch called “looking at the window time.”  All of this comes with the announcement this week that Google is cutting its “20% time,” which led to some of its great inventions like Gmail and Adsense.   

Do you know what made Apple great?  Thomas Brand argues that what made Apple great was Steve Job’s restraint.  Simplify.  Simplify.  Simplify.  

Orhan Pamuk talks to Simon Schama.  Turkey’s famous author comes to explain how the many paradoxes of modern Turkey influenced his writing. 

Why We Need Nomads?  Self-proclaimed nomad Jessica Runner explains why nomads are society’s true connectors. Move.  

Crosswords don’t make you clever.  I never had the patience for crosswords but I love to get outside.  Neuroscience professor Nicholas Spitzer argues that hiking creates more neurons than doing repetitive crossword puzzles. 

The Tragedy of the Sunset Photo.  There are a plethora of sunset images on Instagram yet too few good ones.  Lighting is hard to get right.  Plus, dark and moody photos feel more creative.  But you can sell both image types on Pinterest.  

Can what you do *before* you write improve your actual writing?  Interesting article exploring how rituals shape enjoyment in any process, like writing, which by the way, everyone should do. FYI – Seth Godin has been blogging for ten plus years and, surprise, he wasn’t always great at it.


7 articles to read this week

Some interesting reads I came across this week:  

An open letter to Social Media.  Many brands and people were ignorant of social media marketing for years before it became to take shape and become mainstream.  Now everyone owns the same creative publishing tools; the challenge today is distinguishing your work from the rest.  

Social Networks are suffocating the Internet as we know it.  Ryan Holmes of Hootsuite examines the paradox of an open web, specifically how all social media platforms are taking control of access to their networks in their quest to become larger, ad-selling media companies.

Heading Home: Michael Pollan and Fritz Haeg on Reviving Domesticity. Artists Pollan and Haeg talk about the creative benefits of remaining ignorant, or at least acting such.   

Here’s How Maria Popova of Brain Pickings Writes.  One of my favorite bloggers offers some tips on working as a writer/collector. 

Is New York Only for the Successful?  New York, only if we could all afford to live there. 

Is VSCO Cam the next Instagram?  I don’t think so.  VSCO is more about photography than socializing.  VSCO will make money other ways.

‘Like’ This Article Online? Your Friends Will Probably Approve, Too, Scientists Say.  Mimetic desire, herd mentality, call it whatever you want.  Fact is, you evaluate something based on it’s popularity rather than it’s quality.  Does anyone actually like Justin Bieber?

Bonus (non-article):  

One Second on the Internet.  We produce heaps of information every second of the day, and this even before we send emails.


The spread of link rot

“What I fear is that the entire web is basically becoming a slow-motion Snapchat, where content lives for some unknowable amount of time before it dies, lost forever.”

Nothing lives forever, at least in its origins.