43 Folders

Back to Work

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

Join us via RSS, iTunes, or at 5by5.tv.

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

Instapaper 4: Deciding to Read

Instapaper 4 Icon

Introducing Instapaper 4.0 for iPad and iPhone

The lede here is that my pal, Marco, has just released the stellar new 4.0 version of his Instapaper suite.

This is fantastic news, and–as if you needed one more of Marco’s beta testers to say so–I do sincerely hope you’ll mark the occasion (and support his hard work) by purchasing the Instapaper iOS app(s). I promise you’ll be treating yourself to a massive update to an already excellent product.

Now, it’s fortunate and appropriate that you’ll be hearing this advice at length from a lot of people this week. Because, if it’s not already obvious, Marco’s little app (and its associated services) enjoys a rabid fanbase of sundry paragraph cultists who are as eager as I am to spread the word; and, yes, we do want you to join the Reading Nerd cult.

But, I also want to mark the occasion by adding a few thoughts on exactly what Instapaper has done, and continues to do, for me. (As you may already know, I’m a big Marco fan.)

Thing is, I want to tell you how Marco has made a magical machine for people who have decided to read.

read more »



Nothing wrecks your living room decor quite like a giant, rented hospital bed.

The one my Dad laid in for a couple months in the fall of 1974 was an alarmingly stiff and sturdy affair, the frame of which was forged of impossibly heavy iron, with half a dozen jaggy coats of putty-flesh latex paint doing a shit job of concealing the dings and dents kissed by dozens of clutches of burly rental guys trying to navigate unaccommodating residential doors.

Jammed cattywampus between a teddy-bear brown sectional, an antiqued rococo credenza, and what had until recently been my Father's favorite armchair, the hospital bed left little room for easy socializing, let alone aesthetic speculation. This was a living room where a very ill person would mostly die soon.

read more »

Scared Shitless

Merlin Mann - "Scared Shitless: How I (Mostly) Learned to Love Being Afraid of Pretty Much Everything"

Download MP4 Video of "Scared Shitless"

This is the video of a talk I did last month at Webstock in Wellington, New Zealand.

It's pretty different from a lot of stuff I've done. It's about being scared.

read more »



So, yeah. I'll be speaking at Webstock pretty soon. Which is insanely intimidating.

I think I may have my topic.

Video: John Roderick on String Art Owls, Copper Pipe, and Bono's Boss

Hotrod, with cape and flag

[jump to video]

Long story (not very) short? One night in 2003--after killing it in front of audience of about 30 lucky people in Oakland--The Long Winters needed a place to crash, and my wife and I were happy to oblige. 

So, they drove their Big Stinky Blue Van over the bridge, slept on our floor, and by breakfast the next morning, it'd become clear to me that I'd provided lodging to a man who was not only very likely a member of my karass--he was also one of the smartest bullshit artists I'd ever met. 

Almost eight years later, although I don't see him nearly as much as I'd like, I still count the guy as one of my best pals ever.

That's John Roderick.

read more »



An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


Subscribe with Google Reader

Subscribe on Netvibes

Add to Technorati Favorites

Subscribe on Pageflakes

Add RSS feed

The Podcast Feed


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. »