43 Folders

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Merlin’s weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin. We talk about creativity, independence, and making things you love.

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”What’s 43 Folders?”
43Folders.com is Merlin Mann’s website about finding the time and attention to do your best creative work.

Mark Pilgrim, On *Really* Writing

Mark Pilgrim on The Setup

I'm a three-time (soon to be four-time) published author. When aspiring authors learn this, they invariably ask what word processor I use. It doesn't fucking matter!


Picking the right text editor will not make you a better writer. Writing will make you a better writer. Writing, and editing, and publishing, and listening -- really listening -- to what people say about your writing.

As I said in that interview with Seth Godin, most people are taken way aback when they unknowingly receive the advice they really need — rather than the advice that's just fun to listen to. Well, guess what, Fiddly McMaybewriter? Mark's your new coach, so get ready to run some bleachers.

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TOPICS: Writing

Admin: Pardon My Dust (On Many Levels)

Forgive the site some hiccups over the next few days. After what feels like decades of neglect (read: ugh, book), I'm happy to say I'll be returning to occasional 43f posting this week.

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`Nerdgasm.txt` - Notational Velocity Now Syncs with Simplenote

Happiest thing I saw on my phone this week

Notational Velocity - Version 2.0β2 Release Notes

Two of the best things on my Mac now sync programmatically and without the need for either spit or baling wire— that means syncing with "the cloud," syncing with my iPhone (App Store link), and, by extension, syncing with every computer I own via the game-changing Dropbox. Yes. Big.

If you live in text files and crave seamless, no-brainer syncing (that doesn't require growing a neckbeard), that little icon represents a milestone in the evolution of simple, low-friction workflows.

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43 Folders - Interview with "Linchpin" author, Seth Godin

43 Folders - Interview with "Linchpin" author, Seth Godin (audio mp3, free on iTunes)

I talk with Seth Godin, whose new book, Linchpin (Kindle, Hardcover, Worldcat, ISBN), comes out today. Topics include, "The Lizard Brain," Bob Dylan, protecting the well, and beating back the fear and resistance that drive mediocrity.

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24,000 Times Per Year

Seth’s Blog: What Matters Now: get the free ebook

A few months ago, Seth Godin asked about 70 people to talk about a word or phrase related to their own idea of What Matters Now. He collected them all into one big ol’ file, and now you can download a PDF of all those contributions, including pieces by folks like Elizabeth Gilbert, Kevin Kelly, Steven Pressfield, and, improbably enough, yours truly.

My essay’s called, Enough.

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NaNoWriMo: A Pep Talk and a Warning

I honor any project to write something — especially to write a long piece of fiction. It's something I've always wanted to do but, like most people, I have always been too scared to attempt it.

So, kudos.

But, here's the thing: it's hard to start writing, and it's almost as hard to keep writing. Believe me, I know. And, there will be times every day when you get discouraged or you want to throw in the towel because you feel lost or depressed or useless or just plain tired. Empty. That's the word. Empty.

All I want to say is, keep at it. You can do this.

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An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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Merlin used to crank. He’s not cranking any more.

This is an essay about family, priorities, and Shakey’s Pizza, and it’s probably the best thing he’s written. »

Scared Shitless

Merlin’s scared. You’re scared. Everybody is scared.

This is the video of Merlin’s keynote at Webstock 2011. The one where he cried. You should watch it. »