What I'm Reading...

Designate someone to represent your audience

Stephen King advises that you designate someone you know, you trust, and whom you think represents the audience of your work to act as “The Reader.” Then, write for that person. They don’t even have to know that you’re doing this. In his case, it’s his wife, and she eventually does read his drafts, but he always keeps her in mind when writing and directs everything he creates at her. – Gareth Branwyn, How to Be a Better Writer

stephen-king target-audience writing

Attention Span

They joined Facebook to stay in touch with friends across the country, and then ended up unable to maintain an uninterrupted conversation with the friend sitting across the table. – Cal Newport, Digital Minimalsm.

Replace Facebook with your favorite social network or messaging app.

attention facebook minimalism

Journaling

Keeping a journal of your thoughts on anything (not just the daily details of your life) or engaging in good online conversations are great ways of learning how to write with freedom and immediacy. You’ll be surprised how much turns out to be usable material. – Gareth Branwyn, How to Be a Better Writer

journaling writing

Later

A quote about leaving things for later:

Later is where excuses live. Later is where good intentions go to die. Later is a broken back and a bent spirit. Later says “all-nighters are temporary until we’ve got this figured out.” Unlikely. Make the change now. – It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work, by Jason Fried, David Heinemeier Hansson.

A second quote:

‘To-morrow’: sometimes it is prudence; very often it is the adverb of the defeated. – The Way, n. 251, by St. Josemaría Escrivá.

fear later prudence

Psychology as Superpower

A quote from Brandon Sanderson’s novel Legion: The Many Lives of Stephen Leeds:

Psychology-as-superpower is a recurring theme in my works. I’ve always believed that the personality traits that make us each distinctive (the way we process information, the way we motivate ourselves, the way we shelter our psyche from the bad while learning to cherish the good) can be either our greatest strengths or our most dramatic limitations. How you see yourself, along with how you use what you have, often more important than talents, skills, or even supernatural abilities.”

skills talent