Thursday, April 03, 2014

Show Your Work! by Austin Kleon

I don't know what I read that led me to Austin Kleon's book Show Your Work! The bestselling
author of Steal Like an Artist responds to audience queries. "How do I get my stuff out there? How do I get noticed?" Show Your Work is subtitled "10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered." The book has pointers for anyone in creative fields. However, there are valuable points here that can also be put into place in the workplace, particularly for those working in fields where innovation is prized.

Without using the term "makerspaces", Kleon still points out the benefits of working together. He quotes musician Brian Eno as referring to it as "scenius". He says genius does not dwell in a vacuum. "Under this model,great ideas are often birthed by a group of creative individuals - artists, curators, thinkers, theorists, and other tastemakers." He points out that throughout history, a whole scene of people would work with each other, be inspired by each other, steal and share ideas, "scenius" instead of genius.

Kleon recommends social media, but stresses to experiment, and find the media that works. And, there you'll find people who appreciate what you do. "Share what you love, and the people who love the same thing will find you." It reminds me of science fiction author John Scalzi. Author of Old Man's War and Redshirts, among other books, Scalzi shares his words on his blog, Whatever, and he has used that blog as source material for other pieces. He built an audience for his books by sharing his writing on his blog. People found him.

Show Your Work! is a small book with ten points of advice and supporting material to encourage people to move out in the world with their work. Share it, and they will come.

Austin Kleon's website is

Show Your Work! by Austin Kleon. Workman. 2014. ISBN 9780761178972 (paperback), 216p.

FTC Full Disclosure - Library book


Kaye Barley said...

I find the most interesting and fun books here!

This is one I'll be seeking out.

Thank you, Lesa!

Lesa said...

Kaye, I think you'll enjoy this book, but I also think you could have written it. You've been doing all of it.