10 Great Books that Will Boost Your Creativity

By Jessica Millis

October 14, 2014   •   Fact checked by Dumb Little Man

Becoming more creative can be challenging, especially if you have no idea where to start. You’ve probably already scoured Google for the answers to all your creative problems and whether if you’ve found answers or not, you walked away from the search engine not feeling like you found what would get you over the hump. Today you’ll read about books that are designed to do just that and boost your creative qualities as much as you can imagine.

The following list was formed with no particular order in mind. They are all equally beneficial to boosting your creativity; however, you will not receive all of them the same. You are suggested to read each one and find out which one you can relate to the most.

“Ignore Everybody” by Hugh MacLeod

There are mixed reviews on this book like everything else. Some call it common sense; some feel as though the book is incredibly insightful. The subtitle is “And 39 other keys to creativity,” some of which should be what you need to unlock your potential and let your creativity shine through. Ignore everybody, except yourself and feed the creative beast inside you.

“The Art of Non-Conformity” by Chris Guillebeau

Keeping with the theme of the previous book, most artists or successful people do go through a period of ‘going against the tide,’ or ‘solitude,’ or non-conformity. The principle is the same; you must stop living the life others have designed for you, and start living the life you’ve always dreamed to live. Guillebeau helps you de-bunk the excuses you’ve been telling yourself and excite you for your future.

“Spark: How Creativity Works” by Julie Burstein

Sticking to the trend, Spark by Julie Burstein offers you the perspective of some of today’s most revered creators on the impact and potentiality of art, creativity and what it is made of, and the back story on what was involved in them finding their ‘spark,’ to their creative genius inside. Most of them overcame some type of overhanging dark cloud, which they used to drive them towards their dreams and aspirations rather than succumb to it and never fulfill their purpose.

“The Creativity Checklist: The 11 Step System That Instantly Pulls Million Dollar Ideas Out Of Your Head” by Tim Castleman

Once you’ve accepted the art of non-conformity, ignored everyone you know, and found your spark, here is a book written by Tim Castleman that will put the ideas that you have, into an easy to follow 11 step system that’ll get the wheels turning in your head, on the ground with 100% traction.
“Play: How it Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul” by Stuart Brown
Don’t get caught up in all the serious, super analytical conversations about creativity. Dr. Stuart Brown has studied the biological benefits to play and desires to share them with you and the world here in his book. Inside Dr. Brown explains why play is essential to so much more than just our creativity; furthermore, he explores how in our toughest times we need play more than ever.

“I Swear To Good You Are God At This” by Holiday Matinee and Dave Brown

The raves of this book are particularly about the positivity that bursts from its pages and grabs you by the belt loop to bring you on the ride. With 25 stories of others who have been in your same position, lacking confidence and need of insights to encourage and influence you enough to get up and take the risks to show your passion to the world, I swear to good you are god at this will help you build the confidence to do so.

“The Mind Map Book: Unlock Your Creativity, Boost Your Memory, Change Your Life” by Tony Buzan and Barry Buzan

Mind Maps have scientifically been proven to be a powerful tool to unlocking potentiality you’ve buried deep in your own mind. Fortunately for you, this book will help you unlock that potentiality by letting you in on this ground-breaking, note-taking technique. Don’t just leave your life cluttered with thousands of pieces of paper that are incoherent or make little sense to you. Utilize the power of a mind map and take control of your most intuitive, creative moments with Tony and Barry Buzan.

“Manage Your Day to Day” by Jocelyn Glei

Jocelyn Glei is credited as the author; however, it is put together by a number of featured contributors including names such as Seth Godin, and Behance founder & CEO Scott Belsky. The book is heralded as a great reference material, consisting of many perspectives on the same ideas all in one spot; however, for the same reason, some readers feel they don’t receive much depth from each contributor as they would like. Regardless, the insights here for fighting back the non-stop working world of this century are priceless.

“Show Your Work!: 10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered” by Austin Kleon

When you’ve figured out what the best creative qualities are and began putting them to use, you’ll eventually end up with a bunch of work. What are you going to do with it all? Discover the answer to this question with New York Times bestseller of “Steal Like an Artist,” Austin Kleon as he shows you how to let others in to your creative world by following an etiquette of sharing so that you’ll succeed as an artist or entrepreneur in the digital age.

“Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles Between Vision and Reality” by Scott Belsky

The last of the list, intentionally so, because this is the most important thing! Taking those ideas and all the creative qualities the books above have helped you develop bridge the gap between your vision (imagination, dreams, aspirations) to reality (published books, music videos, plays, etc.). Evidentially this is the hardest part so you’re encouraged to rely heavily on the wisdom inside of this book so that you turn those creative qualities into efficient creative productivity.

The first half of the list has been geared towards helping you first understand what creativity is all about, learning how to develop those creative qualities, and then lastly turning them into habit. The second half of the list has aspired towards helping you turn those new found creative habits into risk taking actions you would’ve never had the confidence to do before.

Jessica Millis

Jessica Millis, an aspiring writer and educator at JMU. Her dream is to finish her first novel.

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