December 11th, 2021: Greetings from New York City. It’s been a fun first month in the city and I think I’ve met up with about 100x more people than I did in the previous ten months. I’ve loved all of this but am also craving a bit more quiet time to think and reflect. I’m planning on taking it easy this upcoming week before easing into the Christmas season.
📕 I’ve been working with a great editor over the past couple of months who has really helped me improve the book and get it to the finish line. The good news is that she thinks it pretty good! The bad news is that it’s likely going to come out in January or February. I am doing my best to ship this, soon I promise!
The Learning Culture Experience with Andrew Barry - Jan 2021
My friend Andrew Barry is launching a new course targeted towards business and culture leaders in companies who are interested in building learning cultures. I spent a bit of time talking through some of the material and helping him think about corporate culture last week and I think his course is going to be great. I also love this high-level framework he came up with to share how he thinks about learning in organizations:
If you use this link you’ll get $200 off if you decide to signup.
#1 People I Like To Follow
I find it amazing that there is so much good writing on the internet now. A lot of people are surprised when I saw this. They spend their days scrolling feeds and feel like there is a lot of trash online. They are right too.
This is why I spend a lot of time customizing my feeds, actively blocking sources of information that want to make me angry or try to denounce certain groups of humans, and seeking out individuals that inspire me. Today I’m going to share some of the people and sources that inspire me. These people generally fall into a few buckets:
Positive and generally see people as good
People that are trying to get better at writing
Deep thinkers who like going into rabbit holes with information
People that generally have an interest outside of politics and the culture war as their primary topic of writing
By the way, If you want to read my high-level thinking on what I call my “creative engine” and how it fuels my life, you can read that here.
Some People I Like Reading
Byrne Hobart: Ten years ago, Byrne’s ideas would be walled behind some financial firms (correct) motivation to use his thinking to make money. But it’s 2021 and you can sample a uniquely brilliant mind every Friday, for free! What a world. Check out his newsletter here.
Anna Codrea-Rado writes about being a freelancer writer, solopreneur, and life in general. Her post this past week on how she is making sense of making less money this year was powerful and definitely furthered my own ongoing explorations of how I related to money.
Sasha Chapin: A beautiful mind and someone that has helped me in my book writing process. I love his newsletter because its like signing up to a mystery newsletter box where you never know what will show - perfume, MDMA trips, writing inspiration, thoughts on Los Angeles - but it’s always good. Check it out here.
Stories by Shiv: While we’ve only exchanged a few emails, I’ve enjoyed “Stories by Shiv” which are generally thoughtful reflections on life. I really enjoyed her thoughts on how she balances a need for security with a desire for adventure.
Kevin McGuire: He’s writing about being a parent, being self-employed, and living abroad. All in my wheelhouse and someone who I think is channeling similar energy to me. We connected a few months ago and it was surprising how much we had in common. I’ll definitely be looking to him for tips once we start expanding our squad. Check out The New Fatherhood.
Lauren Razavi: She’s writing about remote work, travel, creativity, and borderless living - so the overlap with my interests is like 90%! Also just a kind and generous person that is writing her own book on the history of digital nomadism and offered me many tips a few months back. Check out her newsletter here.
Matt Levine: He sends out an e-mail almost daily on what’s happening in the world of finance that somehow takes the most mundane topics and turns them into unique, and interesting stories all told in a very “only Matt could write this” way. If you’re any bit interested in finance and wonder if there are better news stories than “Stock are up on Covid news” headlines, click "+Get Alerts” at the top of this page.
Charlie Bleeker: Writing under a pseudonym, Charlie writes about life, having a young son, marriage, challenges with family, and much more. I find her writing style interesting and fun to read. Also she has a kick-ass site that I’m very jealous of that you can check out here.
Kris Abdelmessih: I love Kris’ newsletter Moontower Meta newsletter for similar reasons. He writes about finance, life, parenting, and can turn almost any topic into one about advanced derivatives and financial options trading. We did a podcast together a few months ago but if you haven’t subscribed to his newsletter yet, please go here.
Tom Critchlow: I like following Tom’s writings on freelancing consulting, indie life, and his ongoing battle for the perfect space for notetaking, connecting ideas, and sharing of ideas on the web. See here.
Dave Perell: Gets a lot of attention on Twitter for his courses business which is awesome but I just love the “I really want to explore interesting ideas and become a better writer” side of David that is always exploring different topics and ideas. He runs two newsletters on Monday and Friday which always have interesting ideas or link to some of his writing. Newsletter here.
Patricia Mou: She seems to have a similar delight of reading all corners of the internet and I always find something I am inspired by or want to read in her newsletter. And she does it on top of her day job which impresses me. Go check out Wellness Wisdom here.
Sara Campbell: A raw, interesting, and reflective newsletter from someone who explores the ups and downs of life and is going through he own journey of “how we can adopt practices and attitudes that can make us not just happier, but stronger, more resilient, and more self-actualized” Check it out here.
Dror Poleg: One of the most interesting writers on the future of work right now. He typically brings together interesting ideas, a unique perspective, and clear concise writing in his newsletter each week. Plus Dror is a kickass name. Follow him here.
Mike Solana: Probably the only writer in the tech industry that makes me laugh out loud. Genuinely funny and interesting takes on the world of venture capital, and tech from his own position as a venture capitalist. Check his newsletter out here.
Lyle McKeany has written a better intro to his own writing than I could, so I’ll just copy that here:
I write about the struggles of being a father to a daughter with cerebral palsy. More generally, I write about life. The messy life we all deal with every day. The ups and downs. The crap bouncing around in my head, which probably bounces around in yours too. The funny, insightful, inspiring, annoying, terrifying, and poignant things that happened to me. Or, you might say, they happened for me because now I get to write about them and share them with you.
The Browser: A great curated newsletter of Goodreads from Uri Braum and friends at the Browser. They have a free edition which shares a couple good reads each day and a paid version which offers even more. Check it out here.
Michael Ashcroft: I’ve shared Michael’s journey a few times through podcasts but he also writes quite a bit on mindfulness, the solo journey, awareness, and other random topics. I really liked this essay on letting people find you.
Astral Codex Ten: Scott Alexander is one of the most prolific, nerdiest, and deepest thinkers on the internet. I don’t read most of his posts but when I find a topic I’m interested in, it’s typically one of the most thoughtful assessments of the topics. This essay telling people to have kids despite climate change is typical of his style.
Rob Hardy: A filmmaker who burned out and is trying to find a new way forward with running a business and making it his own. I’ve really enjoyed his thoughts on creating online. Check out his site here.
Derek Thompson: One of the few journalists with deep and interesting takes on the world of work. He just launched a newsletter through the Atlantic. Hoping he continues to channel his deep curiosity into that as well. Here’s a link to his newsletter.
Jonny Miller: While he hasn’t written it as consistently lately when he does publish his Curious Humans newsletter, it’s worth reading. Always an interesting mix of thoughts on technology, creating online, mindfulness, breathwork and whatever else he’s exploring. Check it out here.
Jen Vermet: A genuinely curious person who has been consistently writing about her adventures with work, being a nomad during the pandemic, and various experiments of self-improvement. Approaching the impressive 100 newsletter issue count soon, which is amazing. Check it out.
Venkatesh Rao: This is one of the few paywalled newsletters I subscribe to. Consistently one of the best writers on tech, culture, and work. Check out Ribbonfarm Studio, and I definitely recommend subscribing.
John Mauldin: A financial writer I’ve been following for years. Worth subscribing to his Thoughts From The Frontlines solely for the interesting charts and data. Typically offers interesting perspectives, backed by data, that you’d have a hard time stumbling across if you are a passive consumer of news. Check out his newsletter here.
Zeynep Tufekci: Has consistently written the best stuff about Covid for the past two years. She’s writing at the New York Time which sucks because they have a paywall but if you are creative you can usually find your way around it. Here is a link to her writing.
Tyler Cowen: I’ve been a fan of his blog, Marginal Revolution, for years. I usually check the blog, which is an older style blog, a few times per week. There are pretty much always interesting reflections from Tyler or links to things worth reading. Check out Marginal Revolution.
Emily Oster: Writes a lot about parenting and has done a lot of writing about Covid during the pandemic. I appreciate how skeptical she is of much of published research and science and walks you through how she approaches decision-making and risk. A great follow, especially if you have kids. Find her here.
+Bonus: The only reading app I use for discovery is the Matter app. I find the quality of content that shows up in my feeds (after building it around some of the above writers) to be quite high. Here is a link to the app.
Have any others I should be following? I’d love to hear them!
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