Monday, January 23, 2006

The War of Art

Here's a very nice, short, readily accessible book about moving yourself forward. It's openly talking to aspiring artists, but those who would like to explore entrepreneurship and emerging enterprises would do well to read this.

First published in 2002, it's called The War of Art. Subtitled: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles.

Esquire called it "A vital gem...a kick in the ass"

The author, Steven Pressfield is a very good writer. Quick, direct and tough with his subject.

Mr. Pressfield writes from an artist's perspective, but he's also a former marine with a love for the harder path. He drove cabs and tended bar in New York, taught school in New Orleans, drove tractor-trailers in North Carolina and California, worked on oil rigs in Louisiana, picked fruit in Washington State.

A number of essays discuss the subject of what it means to be a professional in your attitude toward your enterprise.

A nice quote from that section, I thought: "The professional keeps his eye on the doughnut and not on the hole. He reminds himself that it's better to be in the arena, getting stomped by the bull, than to be up in the stands or out in the parking lot."

And another, which speaks to my suggestions that you need to build good bones into any enterprise; "A professional recognizes her limitations. She gets an agent, she gets a lawyer, she gets an accountant. She knows she can only be a professional at one thing. She brings in other pros and treats them with respect."

Sustainable enterprise as art? You bet.

Steven Pressfiled's web site

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