Day 409 – Be A Documentarian.

If you haven’t discovered Austin Kleon yet, do it now!

He describes himself as ‘a writer who draws’ but he also just happens to be a New York Times bestselling author of books about creativity in the digital age.

In a conversation with Chase Jarvis, Kleon gives you three reasons why we must show our work – apart from it being in the title of the video.

I want to just focus on the first reason.

Be a documentarian.

In the digital age we are in control of our work and how our audiences can access it.

If you are a writer then you used to write a book, it would get published by a company, someone from a newspaper/publication would review it, and then readers would go to a book shop and buy a copy. Now you can publish it yourself on your blog, on Kindle, via email, or what ever platform they invented this week.

The cool thing, which most authors don’t seem to realise yet, is that you can now have the equivalent of the DVD extras with your work. You know the short interviews with the actors and directors, the locations details, the ‘making of’ features.

Any modern creative can now do this for themselves.

Document your creativity.

Open up your blog, for example, and type away ‘here’s p.73 of my latest book – it only took me 7 hours and 23 cups of coffee to write’, then stick in a screenshot of p.73, or the coffee, or both.

Share that quick scribble in your notebook, ‘I think the person at the next to me just killed someone’ . . . At the very least we can tweet it into the police if you don’t post for a while.

If our favourite author, painter, musician, posted this kind of content on their websites, we would probably pay for it.

Anyway, I have a few more ideas about this which I will share over the next few weeks, but until then check out Austin Kleon on the links above.

Where Are You Going To Take Your Literary Coffee?


I came across this article from LitHub and thought it was kinda cool, so I’m sharing it with you.

If you could go to any particular café, and the writers be there, which one would you choose to go to?

I want to go to The Eagle and Child, in Oxford, because of J.R.R. Tolkein and C.S. Lewis, but the Antico Caffé Greco, in Rome, would be pretty cool also.

Creative Swagger.

Click the link for a video about a running group – hear me out – I promise I’m not going to make you run!

Watch, then continue reading.

Writers, artists, and musicians, used to do the same kind of thing.

They would meet up and hang out. In coffee shops, and salons, and restaurants.

They would meet up and share ideas, be inspired, argue, fall in love and out of love.

They would debate society and plot new artistic revolutions.

Like the Track Mafia, they had a purpose and a passion.

Is there such a thing as the Creative Mafia?

Not that I like the term ‘mafia’, with too many connotations of crime and nefarious personalities. A rough translation of the word mafia, which derives from the Sicilian adjective mafiusu, means ‘swagger’, but it can also be translated as ‘boldness’ or ‘bravado’. I like swagger much better.

Do creatives ‘hang out’ anymore. If not, why not?

How many other creative do you know? Are you hanging out with them?

Twitter doesn’t really count, by the way.

Maybe it is time for a new creative movement, which takes back the coffee shops, and bars, and restaurants?

What do you think?