I gave myself one Christmas present this year. It was Steal Like an Artist, by Austin Kleon. I’m about half way through what I figured would be a reminder book, that is, one full of thoughts I know or have heard, but could use to hear again as inspiration. (Sometimes that feels like nagging, sometimes like restating the obvious, sometimes Pollyannaish.*)

The book is inspiring, but done with such a creative flair that for me it avoids all the potential cynical escapes. The drawings help make the messages more real, serving as an example of the advice from the page I’m currently on: use your hands, and turn off the computer.

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*Following some other advice from the book, I’ll remix in something that occurred to me during my research (Rhymes with POLLYANNA: French Guiana, Indiana, Juliana, poinciana (source,

Who wouldn’t be a Pollyanna lounging in French Guiana — shit, even Indiana — with Juliana in that poinciana print dress.