Top Reads for Artists and Entrepreneurs in 2012

Jan 06, 2012
Nicole Arnold

stack of booksFor those of you that don’t already know; I am a crazy, avid reader.  I just can’t get enough!  I read over 80 books last year; not including the ones I read to the kids or all the online reading I do.  I have actually given up watching TV to make more time for reading.   If you are looking for a great author in 2012, here is my list:

1. Steven Pressfield, The War of Art:  Amazing, amazing author.  This is actually my number one read for the year, and possibly all of time.  You must read this book.  If you are an artist than you understand the internal struggle that occurs when you are creating, Steven Pressfield taps into that chaos and helps you transform it into usable energy.  This book is inspirational, deep, kick your ass awesome.  READ IT!

2. Michael Stelzner, Launch and his blog Social Media Examiner:  Michael is my go to guy for anything social media.  His blog is chock full of all the current, juicy stuff that is going to get your business on top of the social media game.  His book Launch, gives you the tools to blast your business into orbit.

3. New Rules of Social Media Series:  This is actually a series of five books, Content Rules, Social Media Metrics, Inbound Marketing, Get Seen, and Beyond Viral.  Each book lays out a different concept within the framework of social media.  I consider this series my encyclopedia of social media, and I suggest you get a set.

4. Scott Belsky, Making Ideas Happen:  This book changed my outlook on how to get things done.  It’s one of those books that you read and say to yourself, “That is the answer I have been looking for, and it is so easy.”  Scott’s simple, no no-sense approach to organizing projects will have you finishing up projects in no time.

5. Twyla Tharp, The Creative Habit: Looking to unleash your inner creative genius?  This is the book for you.  Twyla walks you through a series of activities that will help build that creative muscle that leads to your most impressive works.

6. Douglas Merrill, Getting Organized in a Google Era: Tired of organizing books that don’t take into account all of the technology gains made in the last 5 years alone?  This book will help to get you on track to being able to access all of that information you come across daily.  Doug shares his personal experiences as well as his top tips to using the internet and technology to your advantage.

7. M.J. Ryan, This Year I Will:  If you are looking to figure out why you haven’t been able to move past the first few weeks of your new year’s resolutions, then read this book.  This little book is packed full of useful tools to help you understand why you do what you do when it comes to goals setting.  It also helps you to set clear goals and actually achieve them.

8. Dan & Chip Heath, Switch and Made to Stick: Both of these books are must reads.  Switch is a perfect complement to This Year I Will.  It helps you to understand why change is hard and what to do about it.  I haven’t quite made it through, Made to Stick; it is one of books in the stack on my nightstand.  What I can say is that if you are working on your content strategy this is the book that will help you to understand what ideas are the ones you should use and the ones you should overlook.

9. Jerry Acuff, The Relationship Edge in Business: This book was originally published in 2004, but the information is timeless.  I picked this one up from the library not really knowing what to expect, but I was happy once I dove in.  This book reinforced the importance of building relationships in business, and how to go about doing so in the most effective and genuine way.  I am a firm believer that the success of your business is a direct outcome of the relationships you build with those around you.

10. Tony Buzan, The Mind Map Book:  Excellent book.  If you are looking to step away from linear thinking and get your ideas flowing, this book is the one that will take you there.  This book lays out the why and the how of Mind Mapping.  I personally use this tool for all of my clients as well as for myself to organize my ideas coherently.

11.  Nicole Arnold:  Shameless plug for myself.  This year I will be publishing my book, Stuff Diet, and I highly recommend you pick up a copy or two.  Keep an eye out for more information.

So that is it; my top reads for the New Year.  I hope you stop by your local library and check one of these gems out, or load up that Kindle Fire you got for Christmas.

“You’re the same today as you’ll be in five years except the people you meet and the books you read.” –Charlie “Tremendous” Jones



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