- manage your day-to-day: build your routine, find your focus, and sharpen your creative mind by jocelyn k. glei. i've already mentioned this here, but it bears repeating-- this book is really helpful and is, among a few other things, a major reason this site exists.
- daily rituals by mason currey. see how famous people from every field got it done. spoiler: abundant drug use ahead.
- choose yourself! by james altucher. happy with your corporate life? that's about to change. inspiration for striking out on your own. prepare to fluctuate between "i can totally do this" and "oh my god, what am i thinking?"
- blue truth by david deida. he's a controversial guy but i appreciate his insights. this is the best book of his i've read for both men and women.
love yourself like your life depends on it by kamal ravikant. really quick, powerful read. i don't do what he suggests, but you know. whatever. impressive story. i wanted more.
- the artist's way by julia cameron. basically guaranteed to improve your life. buy it in paperback, mark it up while doing everything she tells you, thank me later.
- bird by bird by anne lamott. a conversational classic on how to write and how to stave off the crazy inherent in writing a lot.
- big magic by elizabeth gilbert. the subtitle is "creative living beyond fear." i love the personal stories she weaves into each chapter. wise.
- the creative habit by twyla tharp. full disclosure: haven't finished it yet. but it's thorough and demanding. a good follow-up to the artist's way. #takeitfromtwyla
- steal like an artist by austin kleon. great quick guide. join his email list.
- show your work! by austin kleon. good but more technical, so might be less eye-opening. more grunt work, less starry-eyed head in the clouds daydreamy creative stuff. overall, pairs well with its predecessor, above.
- the war of art by steven pressfield. one of the best books on getting your creative house in order. he's a no excuses, tough love, old school guy. naturally, his advice works. what are you waiting for?
- tao te ching by lao-tzu. i never felt as calm while reading as i did when i began reading this. although the debate over which translation is best rages on, i've made up my mind. i like the stephen mitchell one because it's clear as can be. personally, i'm not looking for poetry but metaphors to bear in mind.
- midnight in sicily by peter robb. if you have any interest in digging deeper into the italian mafia. i'd catch myself at work looking forward to something, then i'd realize it was going home to read this book. so engrossing and unbelievable it'll have you wandering around muttering, "oh my GOD" under your breath. i may or may not have done that.
- underground in berlin by marie jalowicz simon. a young Jewish Berliner assumes an identity and stays in Berlin for all of WWII. sound impossible? fact is stranger than fiction. an insightful look at human nature and the codes by which we choose to live.
- the orphan master's son by adam johnson. a brutal but worthwhile story about North Korean life. interestingly, it's written by an American and based on his brief visit, research, and accounts from defectors.
- the elegance of the hedgehog by muriel barbery. sweet and inevitably sad. about a young girl, the caretaker of her apartment building, and a new neighbor.
- the pleasure of my company by steve martin--yes, that one. about an obsessive guy who can only leave his Santa Monica apartment under strict conditions, which are rarely met. of course he eventually learns to lead a fuller life.
- an object of beauty by steve martin. an intriguing look at the New York art world, friendship, truth and what blinds us from it.