Leaning in and leaning out

Your posture matters: in conversation at the table or fireside; on a video call (especially on a video call!); with your kids; while you work alone. It’s a signal of intent to yourself as much as to others, and so often our minds follow our bodies. Leaning in usually helps, especially when you don’t feel like it. Leaning out comes…

Neil Gaiman on character, motivation and plot

The next [building block of story] is the characters. Who are they? What do they want? I’m going to harp on a lot about what characters want. I’m going to harp on about what characters want because over and over again you’ll find that when you’re plotting, when you’re putting something together, it’s the only question that opens the door…

When I’m bigger

My sons tell fantastic stories about what they’re going to do and be when they’re grown up: spies, taxi drivers, race-car drivers, generals, fathers of improbably large numbers of children (!), expert fighters, designers, inventors… The stories are a wonderful mix of the improbable and the impossible with a smattering of the realistic and the actual thrown in for good…

Portfolio

Not: “I worked at this company.” “I held this position,” or even “I performed this role.” But rather: “I helped these people.” (Please go and talk to them.) “I made this thing” (Have a look and try it out.) “I caused this to happen” (Let me tell you how.) And most importantly: “It made this difference.”

The practice school

This is the PRACTICE school of writing. Like running, the more you do it, the better you get at it. Some days you don’t want to run and you resist every step of three miles, but you do it anyway. You practice whether you want to or not. You don’t wait around for inspiration and a deep desire to run.…

Broker books

There are network effects between books / knowledge gained from books; Not all network connections are created equal; New books within your areas of experience and specialism will strengthen that part of your network but are subject to the law of diminishing returns: once you’ve read the classics, the remaining books are likely to be less good; The best books…

Tim Ferriss on negotiation, using writing to think, specialisation and some other stuff

These brief videos are worth watching: On negotiation On using writing to help you think On “vanity metrics” and creating worthwhile content On specialisation vs being a generalist