From “Show Your Work:” Quotes Pt. 2

Austin Kleon's take on what you should share, how to share and getting fans and followers.

In Show Your Work, Austin Kleon encourages creatives to share.  But what does that mean? What does he want you to share?

It means you unveil your process. Show what you’re working on and the tools you’re using to do that work. Tell the world what’s worked for you and what hasn’t. Talk about what you’re reading and what’s keeping you motivated. Thoughts, updates, lessons; it’s all fair game, according to Kleon.

Sharing helps others but it also helps you. It exposes you to yourself. You’ll notice themes and trends, said Kleon. You’ll find patterns in your flow. Plus, tidbits like tweets are little things that could become big things later.

On viewing social media as a tool…

“Social media sites function a lot like public notebooks—they’re a place where we think out loud, let other people think back at us, then hopefully think some more.”

 

On choosing platforms…

“Don’t worry about being on every platform; pick and choose based on what you do and the people you’re trying to reach.”

 

On Building a body of Work…

“Focus on days. The day is the only unit of time that I can really get my head around. Seasons change, weeks are completely human-made, but the day has a rhythm. The sun goes up; the sun goes down.”

On Sharing Things You Discover…

“Dumpster diving” is one of the jobs of the artist—finding the treasure in other people’s trash, sifting through the debris of our culture, paying attention to the stuff that everyone else is ignoring and taking inspiration from stuff that people have tossed aside for whatever reasons.”

On Carving Out Your Own Turf…

“Build a good domain name, keep it clean, and eventually it will its own currency. Whether people show up or they don’t, you’re out there, doing your thing, ready whenever they are.”

On Writing Bios…

“Bios are not the place to practice creativity…Keep it short and sweet…Don’t get cute. Don’t brag. Just state the facts.”

On Getting Followers…

“Stop worrying about how many people follow you online and start worrying about the quality of people who follow you…Don’t talk to people you don’t want to talk to and don’t talk about stuff you don’t want to talk about…If you want followers, be someone worth following. ”

On Communities…

“If you want fans, you have to be a fan first. If you want to be accepted by a community, you have to first be a good citizen of that community….If you want to get, you have to give. If you want to be noticed, you have to notice.”

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