Best Advice Ever: Read a Book (Or Two)

I attend a lot of networking events. And at these events, there is always that smart and talented group of individuals (typically the speakers or panel members) whom I would love to emulate. Despite the initial awkwardness of meeting them and forcing myself to ask “smart” questions, I always manage to say hello before I run off to the nearest cash bar.

Talking to smart people require liquid courage. (Via  Tumblr)

Networking.
Liquid Courage Required.
(Via Tumblr)

At these awkward events, at least one student will inevitably ask the following question: “What is the best advice you could give to someone like me?” (as in someone with absolutely-no-experience. Thanks communications degree!)

As you can probably guess, reading is the first thing many of these highly accomplished men and women suggest. Now, I was quite the bookworm in high school and for the longest time I really thought I had great reading habits. But, after evaluating my daily reading intake, I realized that most of what I read was forgettable and, therefore, useless. Ouch.

In order to be smarter, healthier, and more creative — which are just a few of the benefits of reading — I’ve decided to purge myself of all those meaningless things I consume online. Mainly anything that comes in the form of HuffPost slideshows, Mashable How-Tos, and, the most evil of them all, BuzzFeed articles on Beyoncé.

Just like any famous marathon runner trains by eating healthy and exercising religiously, I’m going to “train” to be a better writer by reading not only for pleasure, but for advancement.

And, to celebrate, I’m heading to Harvard Square this weekend to buy a brand new book. I figured the location would set the right mood for thought-provoking reading. Watch out y’all, this BU biddie is about to take on the marketing and business world!

Lilo and Stitch Book in Face GIF

Take that, Harvard. (via Tumblr)

Below are a few book choices as well as some of my favorite sites. I’ve also started a Delicious profile to keep track of the articles I read (you can see them on the sidebar to the right as well). Feel free to follow me or make any recommendations!

Books — Which one should I try next?

Clean by David Sheff

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Ann Fowler

Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood

Once Upon a Secret by Mimi Alford

The Onion Field by Joseph Wambaugh

Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

Favorite Reads on the Daily:

Frugal Traveler: For travel inspiration you can afford.

Summer Tomato: Healthy living, the right way.

Longreads: Though-provoking stuff. Not for leisure.

The Onion: Always on-point and so much better than Thought Catalog for a dose of comedy.

Smitten Kitchen: Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful food.

HowStuffWorks: Everything on here is so fascinating.

DesignTripper: Amazing homes you can rent.

Stone Soup: Making a quick dinner has never been easier.

NPR: Good writing and even better podcasts. Love to listen to them while I’m chillin’ at home.

Marketing Charts: Daily dose of interesting stats.

The Big Picture: I recently became a fan of this blog. Barry Ritholtz talks about “The Big Picture” in ways I can understand it — a lifesaver.

The Etsy Blog: For pretty things.

SEOmoz Blog: An absolute must for my internship. Learned the “link juice” basics from their guide.

Distilled: The excel for SEO’s tutorial is awesome. Lots of solid tips and tricks.

The Greenway Mural: Controversy, Art, and Creativity in Boston

Cheers Boston

(Source: Rob Young)

About a month ago, I had an eye-opening discussion with someone I randomly shared a cab with. I was going downtown and, of course, the 57 was late. I checked my phone and saw that the next bus wouldn’t arrive for another 30 minutes. Annoyed and frustrated, I decided I couldn’t wait any longer and would simply take a cab.

There was an elderly man standing next to me in dirty jeans, a red sox hat and jacket. I assumed he was going to pick up his family after the game since it was already 10pm. I asked him if he wanted to share a cab with me. He happily agreed and off we went.

The guy was a Bostonian through and through. Accent, clothes, political views, everything. We chit-chatted a little and I asked him bout Boston. As a non-native, I was curious to see what his thoughts were. His reply surprised me. Continue reading