George Lois Has A New Book!

And it has quite a few things going for it.

1. It's George Lois. That means it will be full of great advice, acerbic wit, confidence.

2. It's published by Phaidon. They simply do not make bad books. Their books are always well art directed. Always well written. Always a good length. They also print on a thicker stock. If you know Paul Arden's books, you know Phaidon.

3. It's $9.95. Other, older, Lois books go for well over $100. They are fantastic books, I was lucky enough to work with people who owned "Lois on Advertising," but most people don't have that kind of money lying around. Affordable George Lois is a very good thing indeed.

4. It tells you whether or not you're in the target market. Right in the title. "Damn Good Advice (for people with talent!)." Even if you think you don't have any talent(!), you might want to check this out. A professor of mine once kicked everyone out of class who hadn't read the material for the day. At the end of class he said, "If any of you still here didn't do the reading, but had the intelligence to stay anyway, that's good. You stole the lesson. I would have done the same." Steal the lessons in this book.

5. It comes out March 26th. If you don't have $10 to spend on it now, save $2 a week and buy it then.

Now, after all that convincing, here's the link. Go buy it now.

(Hat tip to Dave Trott for tweeting about this earlier)

On the topic of books, buy "101 Contrarian Ideas" for less than a cup of coffee.

UPDATE: For the next 5 days "101 Contrarian Ideas" has been deeply discounted to $0.99! There is absolutely no reason you shouldn't buy it THIS INSTANT.

There are a few blogs I really love. I tend to post about them, or repost their thoughts, rather frequently. One of these blogs is Bob Hoffman's The Ad Contrarian.

The Ad Contrarian is a refreshing blog thanks to its honesty. It's aggressive because Bob wants people to wake up to the cold realities that exist in advertising, then overcome them. For years TAC has been available for people across the world. 100% for free. There was even a great free ebook produced for it a couple of years back.

That's not changing. The blog is staying free. That first ebook is staying free. However, TAC has recently released a new ebook called "101 Contrarian Ideas About Advertising" which costs money.

Not much mind you. It's priced at $2.99 so there's a good chance it costs less than the coffee you had this morning. And you get it instantly, which means you don't have to wait to pore over its pixely pages. And, unlike your coffee, you own it for life and can use it over and over. You can't even wear out the spine because it doesn't have one!

The book is a collection of some of his best blog posts from the past 5 years. Brilliant posts, thought provoking posts, post that, again, make you remember why you got into advertising. You might think, "if it's only blog posts why don't I just read them on his blog?"

You could, but for less than three dollars that's not really worth the effort.

Not to mention you get to give back to someone who has provided so much for so many others—for free. Be a mensch and buy his book. You'll be happy you did. I know I am.

Getting Bit By The Book Bug.

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.

Genuine excitment.

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)