I have often professed my love for books here. Literature, business books, short stories, and the like. But advertising books (including annuals) hold a special place in my heart.
So it came as a great surprise when I read this post by George Tannenbaum. The place I worked this summer (post forthcoming) everyone read books. When we weren't pouring our brains out onto paper we would grab any book sitting around and read it. That's one of the reasons I loved working there so much.
But apparently this is not the norm. Most people are not reading books about advertising on a regular basis. Sad. Because there are little nuggets of truth locked into those pages just waiting to inspire people.
The book I go back to time and time again is D&AD's "The Copy Book." I think it is tremendous and, as a writer, the best resource when I'm in need of a mentor. The people who provided their insights to that book are legends. Their campaigns make me drool in a mixture of awe, excitement, and. Maybe one day I'll be able to come up with something as brilliant as that*.
So for the past few weeks it has been my mission to introduce people in my advertising classes (and friends within shouting distance) to books and annuals. And when I open those pages and let people see the awe-inspiring work I see something beautiful.
That twinkle in someone's eyes when you have opened up their world to something wonderful. I hear people ask the same questions I asked when I first starting reading these things. I see people get that feverish look on their faces like they need more.
The awesome thing about books is that insatiable thirst for knowledge they unlock. People think, "if this is out there, what else could be out there." And all it takes is something giving enough of a fuck to introduce people to these texts. So if you haven't been reading books like The Copy Book, Bill Bernbach's Book, Ally &Gagarno, Communication Arts Annuals, One Sow Annuals, pick one up and start exploring.
And if you own one share it with someone. The Book Bug is about the only virus you can feel good about sharing.
*then again, maybe not.
(image via the fantastic Sell! Sell! Blog, which you should also be reading)