There's something magical about creating something. From getting your hands dirty with a DIY project, to cooking a new recipe, to painting your nails on a Sunday night (we see you, Girl) it's both fun and fulfilling to make something from scratch that did not exist before you got there. But the creative process can be frustrating, too. Sometimes we can all feel like we are running to stand still and need a little inspiration to get unstuck. Here are 6 books that will help you unleash your inner muse and live your best creative life!
1. “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert: Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you may have heard of Elizabeth Gilbert’s international literary sensation “Eat Pray Love“. Her newest book “Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear” explores the desire we have to create and the playful abandon, self-compassion, and good habits we need to bring “Big Magic” into our daily lives. Incredibly inspiring at every turn, this book is a must-read if you need to re-light the creative spark in your routine. Bonus: We recently told you about Liz Gilbert’s podcast Magic Lessons- give it a listen for an extra dose of inspiration!
2. “Year of Yes” by Shonda Rhimes: Shonda Rhimes is one of the most groundbreaking creators and producers of TV today. Her shows “Grey’s Anatomy”, “Scandal”, and “How to Get Away With Murder” (all of which she creative and executive produced, NBD) feature some of the bravest characters and boldest stories in entertainment. So who woulda thunk Shonda was an introvert who has to work really hard at overcoming her shyness in order to succeed creatively? Her book “Year of Yes” chronicles her decision to say “yes” to everything- everything- for one year, no matter how much it scared her. It entertains the reader just as much as her TV shows do, and we guarantee you’ll be inspired to just say YES after reading about her amazing journey.
3. “Brave Enough” Cheryl Strayed: This pocket-size creative companion is like a third-base coach waving you in for the home run. Cheryl Strayed, author of a little masterpiece called “Wild“, has compiled all the quotations, sayings, affirmations, prayers, and truth bombs that have inspired her in her creative life. Pick it up, turn to a random page, and get both a daily dose of sage wisdom and a kick in the pants to get out there and live your best life without fear.
4. “#GirlBoss” by Sophia Amoruso goes to show that you can be down in the dumps (Or in Sophia’s case, in a dumpster. Literally.) and turn your life around in the most amazing way. Her story proves that no matter what your circumstances are in the present, what really counts is your creativity and entrepreneurial spirit. If you want a book to light a fire under your butt, this one’s for you.
5. “Damn Good Advice (for people with talent!)” by George Lois: So, you know that show Mad Men? This guy George Lois is the real-life Don Draper. No, really. Through illustrations of his legendary ad campaigns, he shows and tells the reader how to creatively think outside the box and problem solve at the same time. The content is organized into bite-size pointers, often with a business twist that make this book both practical and fun to have around.
6. “Bossypants” by Tina Fey This book will have you LOL’ing the entire time. Tina Fey brings her comedy A-game to the story of how she went from cleaning toilets in an improv club to creating and producing some of the most influential content of our generation. She also uses her dry wit to bring a fresh (and much needed) take on simultaneously being a boss and being a mom. Side Note: she narrates the audiobook herself and it’s comedy gold. We love you, Tina! “What the what?!”
7. “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron is a great option if you’re looking for a more hands-on approach. The Artist’s Way is less a book and more a way of life. It takes you through a step by step process to unlock your creativity that involves some serious soul searching. Highly recommended for anyone who feels extremely stuck and in need of a life path shake-up.