It Has To Be Eye-Catching Enough To Stop A Skimmer

I was scrolling Twitter and somebody had written, “start an epic adventure” but my brain thought it said, “start a pandemic.”  I’m glad I misread that. Starting pandemics is a touch on the dark side.  I’m also glad for the reminder of how important skimmability is.  Whatever we’re writing, make it eye-catching for the skimmers.  … Continue reading It Has To Be Eye-Catching Enough To Stop A Skimmer

Sunday Music: She Is My Everything (NYC Edition)

A friend (h/t Ryan M) sent this in. I’m automatically cautious about John Prine covers, but it’s in very capable hands here with Bill Callahan and Bonnie “Prince” Billy.  Prine’s songs are always beautiful and interesting because of their imperfections. It takes a special artist to recreate and/or reimagine those imperfections so that they’re not … Continue reading Sunday Music: She Is My Everything (NYC Edition)

Marie Forleo Didn’t Have “Puppy Webcam” In Her Vision Statement (And Her Career Still Took Off)

Marie Forleo was having a hard time getting traction writing her blog posts in the early 2000s. Not only was it hard to just sit and write, but she’d made it harder by getting a puppy - and who has the time for all of this stuff anyway? She turned on a webcam to give … Continue reading Marie Forleo Didn’t Have “Puppy Webcam” In Her Vision Statement (And Her Career Still Took Off)

Most-Read Cultish Creative Posts Of 2021

Welcome to 2022. One cool thing about writing in public is seeing what resonates (and trying to figure out why). Here are the most-read posts of 2021, per the data. What common threads do you see? I’m seeing a lot of lucky catches on searchable quotes and concepts from TV, books, and other media. Hmm. A … Continue reading Most-Read Cultish Creative Posts Of 2021

Toni Morrison On Making Your Work Look Effortless

So you want to get good, eh? Here’s Toni Morrison on leveling up: I thought of myself as like the jazz musician: someone who practices and practices and practices in order to be able to invent and to make his art look effortless and graceful. I was always conscious of the constructed aspect of the … Continue reading Toni Morrison On Making Your Work Look Effortless

Damn The Critics: When Gatsby Got Gut-Punched

New York Herald literary critic Isabel Paterson wrote in her review of The Great Gatsby that it was “a book for the season only.” H. L. Mencken at The Chicago Tribune called it “obviously unimportant.” The Dallas Morning News had the best (re: worst, most devastating, gut-punching) comment, “One finishes The Great Gatsby with a … Continue reading Damn The Critics: When Gatsby Got Gut-Punched

Podcast Of The Week: The Fault In Our Birbiglias

Two masters of the amusing but heartfelt story, from two different domains, just hanging out for an hour. Listen for how they each pull and pick at details from their own lives and consider how they apply that level of awareness to their craft. Listen to John Green on the Working It Out podcast with … Continue reading Podcast Of The Week: The Fault In Our Birbiglias

Podcast Of The Week: Remembering Sondheim

NPR ran a series of 3 podcasts on the life and career of Stephen Sondheim full of Terry Gross interviews, clips from songs, and conversations with others about his influence. With his recent passing, I realized I only knew some bits and pieces and was so moved by the outpouring of love I figured I … Continue reading Podcast Of The Week: Remembering Sondheim