Thursday, December 04, 2008

Malcolm Gladwell

Malcolm Gladwell: "Outliers-the Story of Success" 7:44am

I read an article by Malcolm Gladwell about the time it takes to be very good at anything (10,000 Hours) and that tied in with my beliefs about the sheer VOLUME we have to produce to gain mastery of our writing.

Beginners and intermediates take a lot of convincing over this. I say quantity begets quality but so much of “common-knowledge” suggests the opposite.

Anyway, I had to buy Gladwell’s book, even though we’re broke and I picked up his book “Blink” which is just as good a read. In Blink, Gladwell talks about instant decision-making and how it works, why it’s often brilliantly effective. But in there is much more including how easy it is to change people’s moods AND behaviour merely by salting a conversation with key words. That was, frankly, a bit scary, as was the tests that can show, even for those of us who believe race and colour is irrelevant, just what in-built biases we have.

These books are really excellent, great reads, stimulating, but also, VERY important for serious writers.


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