This week: how to be creative like Leonardo da Vinci, lifelong kindergarten, killing Nazis, and more...

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A newsletter from Austin Kleon
Owen was looking out the window in the car and he said the clouds in the sky reminded him of a map — I said maybe we could pick a cloud continent to live on
Hey y’all,

Here are 10 things I thought were worth sharing this week: 
  1. So, lots of folks are doing the Inktober thing right now, which is great, but I already draw every day, so the contrarian in me decided to do “Blogtober” instead. Yes, that’s right, I’m blogging every day of October over at my old school, self-hosted Wordpress site, like it’s 2005 again.
  2. I devoured Walter Murch’s short book about film editing, In the Blink of an Eye. There’s a ton in there that applies to writing. Great read, up there with Sidney Lumet’s Making Movies, I think. (I’m now reading The Conversations.)
  3. The mind of John McPhee. (I especially liked this bit on crop rotation.) I loved McPhee’s pieces on writing in the New Yorker, and I’m looking forward to reading them again in his new book, Draft No. 4.
  4. Walter Isaacson boils his new biography of Leonardo da Vinci down to 3 ways you can be more creative. (The piece also contains a great bit about the power of paper.) It’s paywalled, I think, so I’ll spoil it for you: 1) be curious about everything 2) observe attentively 3) indulge fantasy. (Easier said than done, of course, but I would note that most children do these things naturally before we ruin it for them...) 
  5. Speaking of, I enjoyed this video of Mitchel Resnick talking about lifelong kindergarten. He’s written a new book on the subject, Lifelong Kindergarten: Cultivating Creativity through Projects, Passion, Peers, and Play. (I have an almost-5-year-old, so kindergarten is on the brain— I loved this book, if you can find a copy.) 
  6. I already have too much to read, but my smart, cool friends keep making smart, cool books: Kelli Anderson’s extraordinary pop-up book, This Book is a Planetarium is finally out, and Jez Burrow’s Dictionary Stories has a great cover and a release date. (Check out the site.)
  7. I’ve never met Nathaniel Russell, but I love his fake fliers, and now there’s a book of them.
  8. Ear candy: Brian Eno on creating the Windows 95 startup sound, and a new single by The Breeders. (Kim Deal and the gang have never made a bad record, and I am very excited for the new one.)
  9. Time waster: If you feel like killing Nazis (who doesn’t?), you can play the original Wolfenstein 3-D in your internet browser.
  10. RIP Tom Petty. Here’s a great piece about his career.
Thanks for reading! If you like this newsletter, forward it to a friend, buy a book, or tweet me some love

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PS. Happy October, a.k.a. The Best Month. Here’s the October page from my 2017 wall calendar, which you can now get for $2.30, but if you want an equally awesome but much more helpful calendar (because, of course, the majority of its months have not passed), check out the 2018 edition, on sale now!
Austin Kleon is the author of Steal Like An Artist and other books.

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