Category: Writing

I Read 72 Books in 2017

I’ve always been a reader (at least since I learned how).

If you like learning things, I think there is hardly a better way then to get someone’s distilled wisdom in a book. Being an author, I’m biased. But I think it was my love for reading that turned me onto writing in the first place.

My books. Pain in the ass to move, but great for learning.

Based on hearing some people talk about how many books they read in a year, I decided to actually keep track over 2017.

In the end I read 72 books!

This is cover to cover and this is actual reading. (For audio I tend to do podcasts, rather than audio books. Just a personal preference.)

I did not count any books that I only read part of.

I also did not count my own book, Powered By Nature, that I read countless times as I was writing and editing it either.

If you look through the list, you’ll see a fairly wide variety of topics, but certain focal points as well. In this and the following posts, I’m going to dive into my own analysis of this list.

The 72 Books I Read in 2017

This list is in chronological order of when I finished the books.

01 The Nature Principle by Richard Louv
02 The Lost Language of Plants by Stephen Harrod Buhner
03 Psychonavigation by John Perkins
04 The Great Work of Your Life by Stephen Cope
05 The Rise of Endymion by Dan Simmons
06 Succeed and Grow Rich through Persuasion by Napoleon Hill
07 Ensouling Language by Stephen Harrod Buhner
08 Primal Fat Burner by Nora Gedgaudas
09 The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho
10 The Great Disruption by Rick Smith with Mitch Free
11 The Book of Joy by Douglas Adams, Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu
12 King by Elliot Hulse with Chris Barnard
13 The Fourth Phase of Water by Gerald Pollock
14 Illumination by Alberto Villoldo
15 Simple Numbers, Straight Talk, Big Profits! by Greg Crabtree
16 The Man in High Castle by Philip K. Dick
17 Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time by Jeff and J.J. Sutherland
18 How to Live a Good Life by Jonathan Fields
19 Let My People Go Surfing by Yvon Chouinard
20 Hacking Marketing by Scott Brinker
21 The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni
22 The Tao of Power by Lao Tzu and R.L. Wing
23 Scaling Up by Verne Harnish
24 Losing My Virginity by Richard Branson
25 Ilium by Dan Simmons
26 The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi
27 The Vegetarian Myth by Lierre Keith
28 Eating on the Wild Side by Jo Robinson
29 What a Plant Knows by Daniel Chamovitz
30 Stealing Fire by Steven Kotler & Jamie Wheal
31 Tools of Titans by Tim Ferriss
32 Vitamin N by Richard Louv
33 The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben
34 Expert Secrets by Russell Brunson
35 Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari
36 Head Strong by Dave Asprey
37 Homo Deus by Yuval Noah Harari
38 Maxims and Reflections by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
39 Daily Rituals by Mason Currey
40 Essentialism by Greg McKeown
41 The Secrets Teachings of Plants by Stephen Harrod Buhner
42 The Bay Area Forager by Kevin Feinstein and Mia Andler
43 Rigor Mortis by Richard Harris
44 Slow Death By Rubber Duck by Rick Smith and Bruce Lourie
45 Who by Geoff Smart and Randy Street
46 Move Your DNA by Katy Bowman
47 The Vaccine Friendly Plan by Paul Thomas, MD and Jennifer Margulis, PhD.
48 Evolution 2.0 by Perry Marshall
49 In the Dark by Jason Bawden-Smith
50 Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
51 The Rebirth of Nature by Rupert Sheldrake
52 Trust Us, We’re Experts by Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber
53 Fat for Fuel by Dr. Joseph Mercola
54 The Sale of a Lifetime by Harry S. Dent Jr.
55 The New One Minute Manager by Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson
56 Olympos by Dan Simmons
57 Predictable Success by Les McKeown
58 No by Jim Camp
59 The Surrender Experiment by Michael A. Singer
60 The Last Safe Investment by Bryan Franklin and Michael Ellsberg
61 The Art of Living by Bob Proctor
62 Automatic Wealth by Michael Masterson
63 Running Man by Charlie Engle
64 The Art of Dramatic Writing by Lajos Egri
65 The Synergist by Les McKeown
66 The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer
67 Key Performance Metrics by Bernard Marr
68 Survival Handbook by Peter Darman
69 Buffettology by Mary Buffett and David Clark
70 Magicians of the Gods by Graham Hancock
71 Why Science is Wrong…About Almost Everything by Alex Tsakiris
72 Science and Spirituality by Rupert Sheldrake

Fiction vs. Non-Fiction

In breaking down these into categories I come up first with the following:

  • Fiction (5 books)
  • Non-Fiction (67 books)

The five fiction books are:

  1. The Rise of Endymion by Dan Simmons
  2. The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho
  3. The Man in High Castle by Philip K. Dick
  4. Ilium by Dan Simmons
  5. Olympos by Dan Simmons

You’ll notice Dan Simmons features prominently on this list. These are 3 of his science fiction books (The Rise of Endymion being the final book of 4 in the Hyperion series). The Ilium and Olympos being a two part series. Amazing writer! I was recommended his work last year and glad I read it. Will probably read more from him in 2018.

I kept hearing about The Alchemist so I finally got it and read it. It’s a good parable. Didn’t do a whole lot for me.

The Man in High Castle was probably the only book I read on Kindle this year. I liked the movies based on Dick’s work, but this was my first time reading him.

Overall, I feel this is too little on the fiction side. In the coming year I’ll aim to increase the ratio somewhat.

In the next post, I’ll be going over the non-fiction breakdowns.

  • Nature (9 books)
  • Shamanism (2 books)
  • Science/History (10 books)
  • Self-Help (8 books)
  • Business (13 books)
  • Health (9 books)
  • Biography (4 books)
  • Ancient Wisdom (3 books)
  • Writing (4 books)
  • Finances (5 books)

How many books did you read this year? Answer in the comments below…

Asking for Writing Topics

When it comes to writing blog posts and email broadcasts, I write best reactively.

In a previous post, I talked about how to generate lots of writing ideas. That’s all well and good because I think those will be fun to write and interest people. And, in addition to coming up with ideas on my own, I find that some of my best stuff comes based off of another person’s question.

Question Mark

A few things can happen when I receive a question:

  1. I might not think the question is broad enough to be interesting to more than the person asking about it. Or it is just a bad question (yes, they do exist). In this case I’ll answer individually or not. But these cases are actually in the minority.
  2. I know the answer to the question and it is worth posting about. The question sends my mind off in a direction and the words just flow from my fingertips. The more you know a topic, the better you’ll be able to do this. This is wonderful because it may not be a topic I would have thought of myself. Still, if someone is asking it, probably lots of people are thinking the same things.
  3. I don’t know the answer to the question, and it is still worth posting about. In these cases, if it holds my interest, I’ll have to do some more research to give it a good answer. These posts take more time, but I learn as I go along so it is often worth it.

Although this happens more often than not with a question, it can also happen with comments. Those too can send me off in writing. Maybe to fill in more details. Maybe because I disagree with what was said. Maybe it just sends me off on a tangent.

You can see plenty of examples of these on my other sites. Some good recent examples include:

Just recently I did this in regards to topics for filming Youtube videos. It works much the same there.

On this note, what are your questions? I want to do the same thing here at based on what YOU want to read about. Ask me anything that doesn’t have to do with health and fitness. (I may answer those things, but it will be at the other websites.) Questions on business. Questions on money. Questions on productivity. Questions on writing. Questions about how to be an awesome human being. Whatever you want to know, ask away…

Along with this I always like to put this disclaimer. There are no guarantees that I’ll answer your question.  And it probably won’t be individually but instead here in a future post. But if it fits in the categories 2 or 3 above, there is a good chance I will answer it. Please post your questions below…