10 Books Every Creative Entrepreneur Should Read / by Jordan Hefler

10 Books Every Creative Entrepreneur Should Read | Jordan Hefler

Between podcasts, Netflix, and social media, it's become incredibly difficult to choose how we ingest information these days, but sitting down and reading a book will always rank towards the top for both business and pleasure in my opinion.

I've always loved to read, from when I was in school to when I used to work in an office and use my lunch break every day to read. Now that I'm working for myself and my days are loosey-goosey, I'm learning that I have to legitimately structure reading time into my schedule! It's like giving myself homework which is kind of weird, but at the end of the day I really enjoy what I do so I enjoy learning about it even more.

10 Books Every Creative Entrepreneur Should Read | Jordan Hefler

I'm a firm believer that freelancers have to work twice as hard if they want to level up, and in the creative marketing world, things are ALWAYS changing which makes it even harder.

Here are my top 10 favorite books (in no particular order) I've read of late that have helped me gain a ton of knowledge and confidence as an artist and a creative business owner:

1. THINGS ARE WHAT YOU MAKE OF THEM - ADAM J. KURTZ

I'm obsessed with this little book. I saw Adam speak at Venture Pop! a creative conference recently in New Orleans, and as part of our swag bags we got an advance copy of this book. It's simple, blunt, and incredibly relatable. I think this will be my new gift for other creatives whenever I get the chance.

2. CONTENT INC. - JOE PULIZZI

big nerd at the hair salon #sry ๐Ÿค“

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Ok so I haven't actually finished this book yet.. I just got it for Christmas but I'm already finding it to be incredibly helpful. There are a ton of case studies in the book that prove content marketing is the way to be successful in this day and age. I'm eager to keep reading it but already definitely recommend it to anybody trying to scale their business.

3. BIG MAGIC - ELIZABETH GILBERT

This was probably one of my favorite creative books I've ever read. I had heard a lot about it and finally understood all the hype when I finally cracked it open: Elizabeth Gilbert digs deep into the idea of creativity being the "big magic" of the universe that fuels all of our passions. Yeah I know it sounds a little "woo-woo" but trust me on this one and keep an open mind.

4. THE SUBTLE ART OF NOT GIVING A F*CK - MARK MANSON

Lol. This title says it all. It's a refreshing attitude towards self-help. I really enjoyed this one (plus it's orange so it matches my aesthetic, which is always a plus!)

5. #GIRLBOSS - SOPHIA AMORUSO

I feel like this book gets a bad rap sometimes since Sophia Amoruso has very controversial tactics when it comes to business. However, I still found it to be extremely motivational. Sophia's real life story is rags to riches and how she built an empire is incredibly inspirational.

6. THINK AND GROW RICH - NAPOLEON HILL

This book was hella weird. It was written in the 30's so it was really hard to get through the language in some parts... but all in all, the ideas in the book were still solid even in this day and age. I read it because I had heard countless people recommend it to me, so here I am recommending it to you too. I think it's probably an entrepreneurial staple more so than an enjoyable read. I will say I felt pretty fancy reading this book in public.

7. SHOW YOUR WORK! - AUSTIN KLEON

I love this book as well as Austin's other book "Steal Like and Artist." His ideas about not holding your art back and instead sharing it with the world are extremely relevant to today's social media climate. As an art school graduate, we were sometimes encouraged to not show our work until it was done or perfect. His ideas about sharing your process to help connect with your supporters is refreshing.

8. ART & FEAR - DAVID BAYLES AND TED ORLAND

I was required to read this book in college and I'm so glad. I've read it like 4 or 5 times now. It's a solid read for young artists, old artists, people aspiring to make art a business, the starving artist... really any artist. It's a bit on the metaphorical side but it will totally pump you up.

9. THE LIFE-CHANGING MAGIC OF TIDYING UP - MARIE KONDO

This isn't technically a book directed for creative entrepreneurs, but I did find it to have transcendent ideas about de-cluttering your life. It is a New York Times best seller and I really encourage everybody to read it.

10. YOU ARE A BADASS AT MAKING MONEY - JEN SINCERO

Most everyone has probably seen the bright yellow "You are a Badass" book by Jen Sincero in every book store and Urban Outfitters across the country, but I find that little people know about her follow up book. I had a lot of takeaways from both books, but this one was extremely helpful in terms of learning to think of money as energy instead of a slimy, weird topic. She goes into depth about manifesting your reality which I thought was completely stupid at first, but after implementing some of her practices I've had some really spooky things happen to me.  Jen Sincero is basically a wizard.

I'm getting ready to read Creativity Inc. which I've also heard great things about! What self-help or creative/freelance books have you read that you recommend? I'd love to hear so I can add them to my reading list! P.S. if this post helped you, please feel free to share on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest!