On writing for joy, and productivity for rich people

Your weekend serving of good shit. Have you considered knocking off early so you can read it?

It’s been a while since I sent out one of these allegedly weekendly newsletters of excellent curated content. Sorry about that. I’m still grappling with when to send them. Apparently it’s dangerous for me to aim to send them on Saturdays or Sundays because a) I am terrible at doing things in advance, and b) I am terrible at getting myself to do work on weekends.

Perhaps it’s a rebellion against my years as an employee, where I barely ever had an entire weekend free. I remember asking for a weekend off once and my boss was like, you always take weekends off! A shouting match ensued, in which I threatened to fetch the rotas (which I was in charge of) to point out that I had not, in fact, taken a whole weekend off since I’d started working there. But I digress.

Another thing is that I’m badly out of the habit of reading as many as articles as I used to, and I didn’t want to send out a list of mediocre stuff to check out. I don’t use Twitter nearly as much as I used to, and often avoid my feed completely, but Twitter is where I used to find a lot of things to read. So now I’m having to look further afield. Which is fine, because there’s plenty of good shit out there. Speaking of which…

Good shit by me (if I say so myself)

  • What I was doing while I wasn’t working (Article)
    The first paid edition of Clattermouth goes into detail about all the different ways I’ve wasted time and made money during the pandemic. Unflattering reveals contained within.

  • My worst habits (Article)
    The second paid edition of Clattermouth looks at how much my situation has changed since my descent into apathy and bad habits began in 2017 – and what I’m doing to climb back out of it.

  • I have finally conquered my greatest vice (Article)
    In last week’s paid edition of Clattermouth, I talk about arguably the greatest nemesis of my own productivity: video games. I took a decade-long break from gaming in my 20s, and now I’m wondering if life wasn’t better that way.

  • Is it just who I am or can I change it? (Article)
    In this week’s paid edition of Clattermouth, I dive into whether certain traits are innately, irrevocably part of our personalities or if that’s just something we tell ourselves to enable our bad habits. Specifically: can I become the type of person who does things in advance?

Good shit by other people, aka an unapologetic list of things that interest me

  • I’m an unsuccessful writer, how can I escape this feeling of despair? (Article)
    I disagree with the final quote about needing to write every day, but otherwise this article has some solid, affirming advice for the writer who spends too much time worrying and not enough on enjoying the process.

  • Facebook and Twitter are going to ruin newsletters, aren’t they? (Article)
    God, I hope not. I’m subscribed to a bunch of newsletters for the curated content from people I trust, you know? No algorithm nonsense in my inbox please 🙅🏻‍♀️

  • The biggest productivity hack is being rich – and it’s the one we don’t speak about (Article)
    This article raises some great points about how productivity tips – often dished out by CEOs and other wildly successful people – simply aren’t attainable for many, such as lower-down employees who have to stick to someone else’s schedule and demands, or those with money worries who may struggle to sleep and/or be less able to focus. Apparently it’s easier to be productive when you can delegate shit to your minions. Who knew?

  • Let them eat chips (Article)
    On a similar note, here The Guyliner (an excellent, hilarious and down to earth writer) talks about the $200 french fries touted as an ‘escape from reality’ and the ridiculousness of the notion that money can’t buy you happiness. ‘I can’t stop wondering about the kind of reality people rich enough to eat these chips feel the need to escape from? How bad can it be? What are you blotting out – a lack of sleep from the noise of your butler counting your money, maybe?’

  • Twelve Minutes Might Have The Worst Video Game Ending Of The Year (Article)
    When I first heard about it, I thought this game had a cool and interesting premise. But after reading this? Uh, it’s a big yikes from me. How are stories like this still being written in the year of our lord 2021? I’ll take the game in which I can date a sword instead, thanks.

  • The Edge of Sleep (Podcast)
    I binged this entire podcast while I cleaned my flat yesterday. Everyone who went to sleep last night has died, and a group of survivors who had the good fortune to work the nightshift race to uncover the secret of this epidemic before they too fall asleep.

  • Pocket (App)
    I use Pocket to save articles I want to read later. It’s a great tool. It can also be used to read some articles you otherwise wouldn’t be able to because of paywalls, but you didn’t hear it from me.

  • ATONE: Heart of the Elder Tree (Apple Arcade game)

    If you’ve got an iPhone, you’ve probably got a free trial of Apple Arcade waiting for you. And with that free trial, you should play ATONE: Heart of the Elder Tree. It has riddles and puzzles and snarky squirrels and Norse mythology and mesmerising rhythm-based combat and gorgeous hand-drawn art and gut-punching emotional moments. It’s the best thing on Apple Arcade, if you ask me, and I don’t know why more people aren’t talking about it.

  • Get three months of Audible for 99p
    If you’re in the UK, you can currently sign up for three months of Audible for a total of 99p. You get one audiobook credit per month. This isn’t an affiliate link or anything, I just love audiobooks. Right now, I’m listening to Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou, which delves into the scandalous tale behind the fraudulent, multibillion-dollar biotech company Theranos. Juicy.

Take it easy,