The original content creation medium (if you don’t count paint on rock,) paper is the must-have form of pulp.
Julia Cameron , author of the creative journaling guide The Artist’s Way says: “When we write by hand, we connect to ourselves. We may get speed and distance when we type, but we get a truer connection–to ourselves and our deepest thoughts– when we actually put pen to page.”
What she’s talking about isntt pulp fiction. But it is pulp. Paper is still the very best place to start an idea. Earthwise is affordable – check current price; – and is 100% recycled. The stock as a good “hand feel,” but not so much it seems precious. I’ve weened myself away from those high-end notebooks. I feel compelled to decorate them with greatness. The pressure!
With a deliberately un-fancy sensibility to your paper, you’ll flow with the go. You’ll feel no hesitation in grabbing a pad from the stack and making your mark(s) on the world.
Call me a Sharpie collector. Or perhaps a Sharpie loser: I tend to lose more than I gain – I think I must leave a Sharpie everywhere I go (you’re welcome) – and thus I replenish my supplies frequently. The black fine-points are my every day, all-day tools: I love the precision of the line, the depth of that black color, and even the sound of the “scritch-scritch” on the paper.
Oh, the sad feeling when I am out of Sharpies and must use a mundane ballpoint to ideate. Somehow, the logo designs, the name ideas, the lists, the character sketches, the flow charts just aren’t as… sharpie.
And then there is the highly saturated color set: so great for accents, adornments, fheading titles, and more robust sketches and doodles. Day or night, home or away, Sharpies are never dull. They are the Walt Now Creative Ideation pens of choice.
Bulletin: your creative content is only as good as your content creation tools. And your brain, but that’s another story. In this post, I highly recommend Apple’s MacBook Air laptop. Five stars for content creation, unless you need battery life, then, for serious, buy something else.Here’s my review, supported by affiliate links.
Apple’s MacBook Air is so colossally cool for content creation, I use two at once. Really. I was such a heavy user of my first one, an 11.6-inch model purchased in 2014 and still killing it, the “a” key now looks like a font from an alien dimension. When I was offered a used 13-inch, as inheritance from an elderly family member, I thought I was walking on MacBook Air.
1. They’re shiny. Like robots in a mirror wearing bling. I just like to look at them.
2. They’re powerful. Mine have mega-memory (newer ones even more) and 1.4 GHz Intel Core i5 processors. Gigantic iMovie files into convert into mp4s in a blink; your YouTube channel need not wait. Every task in Photoshop happens at the speed of thought: yes, you should have a tighter crop on your headshot. De-saturate it while you’re at it.
3. They’re thin. “Have-you-been-working-out?” thin. Look how thin.
4. They’re light. At about 3 pounds each, I can put both into my backpack and zip out the door without straining any upper body muscles.
6. They’re trouble free (but then, trouble is always free.) I’ve had both since 2014, and have had 0 virus or performance incidents. I think the Apple store misses me.
7. They make your fingers feel good. Great keyboard response and large trackpad action to… to… excuse me, I have to kiss my fingers now.
8. Flawless, no-dropout videos conferences while executing all of the above. It’s the laptop for multi-taskers. Or those who aspire to be.
Why do I have two of them?
Hey, why not?
I can have two screens open at once, which reduces the amount of tabs I have open on either one of them. It also suits my creative ADHD: when I look away from one screen to avoid thinking too hard (“brain hurts”,) my eyes and hands fall on the other keyboard, and keep working away on something else.
And, yes, I assign different types of projects to each MacBook Air, by category. The slightly bigger screen 13-inch is better for using InDesign, Photoshop and Comiclife. The slightly smaller 11-inch where I pound out copy in Word: scripts, screenplays, stories, posts and exasperated tweets. Correspondingly, it’s also the one with the most social tabs open.
Is there a “con” to the MacBook Air?
Yes, and it’s a big one:
It’s plain terrible. Awful. Neither of my MacBook Airs can hold a charge.. If I dare try to use without power cord, I’ve got about 15 minutes to live, sometimes less. In my particular creative venues, from home office to library to coffee shop to Whole Foods, I am never far from a wall outlet, so concern over battery life has, like Elvis, left the building. BUT BUT BUT…
If you are, say, a frequent flier, and need a laptop that works reliably on airplanes, forget the MacBook Air. Wipe it from your memory, like Men in Black. In fact, in my experience, battery fans, forget Apple laptops altogether. Go another route. Laptop Mag says the best three laptops for battery life are the Dell Latitude 7400, the HP Spectre x360, and the Dell Latitude 7400. I believe them. On the charged issue of charge, I’m envious.
On the whole, though, if battery life isn’t in your top 5 content creation criteria – as it is not in mine – you will love the Macbook Air. Business Insider agrees: this article is headlined, “After one year with Apple’s latest MacBook Air, I remain convinced it’s worth the high price tag.”
Price tag? Though I’m a freelancer on a budget, and live frugally, I can’t imagine life without these babies. Sometimes day-in, day-out value is worth that first investment.
Dr. Albert Einstein has a new theory. He’s just not sure how to “market” it. In fact, he’s “pulling his hair” over it. And if this genius can’t figure it out, who can? In this dialogue-driven radio commercial, the good doctor is pointed to CreativeWorks, a “one-stop shop for all his marketing materials.” Listen to great Hollywood voice talent having fun in this spot, written and produced by Walt Jaschek for client CreativeWorks of St. Louis, and recorded at World Wide Wadio in Hollywood. The script is below.
SCRIPT “Marketing Genius” 60-second radio commercial for CreativeWorks
SOUND FX: LABORATORY SOUNDS, UNDER
HOST: Welcome back to “Creative Thinkers.” Today we’re talking with Dr. Albert Einstein.
EINSTEIN (in German accent): Hello there.
HOST: Hey, Doc, how are you?
EINSTEIN: Oh, fine, fine. (Makes a deliberate joke) At least… relatively.
HOST: You’re a genius.
HOST: Hair’s kind of wild, though.
EINSTEIN: Yeah, I’ve been pulling it.
HOST: Pulling it?
EINSTEIN: See, I’ve developed a brand-new theory…
EINSTEIN: Und I’ve been putting together a big marketing push for it. But I can’t find one place to handle all my creative materials.
HOST: Have you considered CreativeWorks?
HOST: CreativeWorks is the one-stop expert at creating complete advertising and marketing solutions.
EINSTEIN: Even for a genius?
HOST: Especially for a genius.
EINSTEIN: I’m there!
HOST: Good! By the way, Doc, what is your brand new theory?
EINSTEIN: Well, get this. As it turns out, “e” only equals “mc squared” some of the time.
(Beat as they take this news in)
EINSTEIN: Crazy, huh?
HOST: That’ll have an impact.
EINSTEIN: No kidding.
ANNOUNCER: CreativeWorks. Bright ideas…
SOUND FX: LIGHT BULB CHAIN PULLED, HARP GLISTEN, UNDER
Funny dialogue and theatre of the mind are at play in this radio spot for Miami’s NewsCenter 7 and their fraud-exposing team of reporters known as the Wastebusters. In it, a Miami businessman – Mr. Rippemoff – is not happy to hear from his assistant Dorothy that the Wastebusters are in his outer office. This is the kind of spot you don’t hear much anymore: a well acted and produced scene that’s more akin to what one of associates calls “adver-tainment.” It also helps to have clients who want it and appreciate it! (Bless ’em!) Turn up your speakers for…
:60 RADIO SCRIPT “MISTER RIPPEMOFF” For: NewsCenter 7 Wastebusters Writer: Walt Jaschek Producer: Paul Fey
SOUND FX: OFFICE INTERCOM BUZZES
DOROTHY THE ASSISTANT (voice over intercom): Mister Rippemoff?
MR. RIPPEMOFF: Yes, Dorothy?
DOROTHY: A reporter and crew from NewsCenter 7 Wastebusters is here to see you, sir.
MR. RIPPEMOFF: NewsCenter 7?
DOROTHY: Wastebusters. They expose mind-boggling wastes of taxpayers money right here in the Miami Valley.
MR. RIPPEMOFF: What do they want with me?
DOROTHY: They said you sold the government a ballpoint pen, sir.
MR. RIPPEMOFF: So?
DOROTHY: For a thousand dollars.
MR. RIPPEMOFF: Well, it came with refills.
DOROTHY: And a jar of paperclips for two thousand dollars.
MR. RIPPEMOFF: They were multi-colored paperclips.
MR. RIPPEMOFF: Red ones, blue ones…
DOROTHY: What should I tell the Wastebusters, sir?
MR. RIPPEMOFF: Do they have lights and cameras?
DOROTHY: And the ballpoint pen, sir.
MR. RIPPEMOFF: Tell them I went out my window, down my fire escape, then booked down the street, screaming like a madman.
DOROTHY: I don’t think they’ll believe that sir.
SOUND FX: FOOTSTEPS AND WINDOW OPENING
DOROTHY: Mister Rippemoff?
MR. RIPPEMOFF: (SCREAMING)
ANNOUNCER: NewsCenter 7 Wastebusters expose government waste right here in the Miami Valley. And see the Wastebusters in action.
SOUND FX: OUTSIDE TRAFFIC
MR. RIPPEMOFF: (STILL SCREAMING)
DOROTHY (yelling): You can’t escape them, sir! They’re the Wastebusters!
MR. RIPPEMOFF (running away): I know!
ANNOUNCER: NewsCenter 7 Wastebusters. Weeknights at 6. Coverage you can count on.
He’s bold. He’s bald. He’s back. “Star Trek: Picard” starring Patrick Stewart is streaming NOW on CBS All Access. You can try it for free for a week and gets tons of Trek, old and new.
Here are some funny, Picard-loving commercials for his previous show, Next Generation, which you can still watch on Prime Video. In the first campaign – both TV and radio – devoted Picard lover say they are “shaving their heads” to declare their fandom.
And last but not least, we take you back to the original auditions for the role of Jean-Luc Picard!
Hope you’ve enjoyed these audio flashbacks to an earlier era of Picard, and join us in watching the new show!
Any and all things. But usually Walt helps expand ideas in and around creative content. Projects needing shaping, cheering. Marketing and ad campaigns. Screenplays, teleplays, video scripts. Creative careers, endeavors and dreams.
What is a brainstorm?
Two or more people creating ideas, sharing ideas, and honing ideas toward a specific goal or metric.
It’s more fun that, though, right?
Ha! Yes. “Metric” is such a serious word. It just means, you’ll figure out where you’d like to be by the end of the session.
What if I don’t know my goal or metric?
Then that’s the first thing to be discussed in the brainstorm!
How are these brainstorms conducted?
By Skype or Zoom. In front of our computers.
Or live, in person. In front of a whiteboard at your place or ours.
What’s the length of these brainstorms?
90 minutes to 2 hours. Not exactly “deep dive.” More “medium dive.”
But medium dives can move you forward.
What have people said about booking a brainstorm with Walt?