in Reading Notes

Books Read in July ’16

Work on the summer test talk show wrapped up near the end of July, so I vaulted back into reading with a vengeance. I have four weeks off before returning to The Real, and I’m fired up to take on my reading pile, my projects, and a few other great opportunities.

Best July BookDeep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport – I waited to read this until I knew I’d have swaths of time in which to practice the ideas espoused in Newport’s latest book. They are ideas I’ve flirted with before. In early post-college days, I could sit on my bed and write down a ballad in three hours without taking a break. I’ve since become more distracted. Of particular merit in this book is his any benefit mindset –  that just because something, some app, some social media tool, gives you a benefit, does not make it worth your time, especially when you could use that time in deep work and develop something of real value.

Other Non-Fiction Reads:

Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert – this is a great treatise on creativity and ideas, particularly on recognizing when an idea is there for you, make time for it. Once you’ve entertained and developed that idea, don’t fear perfection. “Done is better than perfect,” Gilbert says, and for someone like myself who lives through his projects, this is much needed sense.

The Time Paradox: The New Psychology of Time That Will Change Your Life by Philip G. Zimbardo

Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford

Other Fiction Reads:

Blindness by José Saramago 

Be Frank with Me by Julia Claiborne