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Catch Pokémon for Fun and Money: Lessons in Paying Attention

File under: entrepreneurship is everywhere.

And so are Pokémon hunters. No matter where you’re reading this, you’ve probably seen them—and maybe you are one of them, staring at your phone while walking through the streets in search of winged creatures.

Or maybe you think the Pokémon craze is silly. Personally, I think it’s interesting to see how quickly it caught on, with millions of players all over the world, as well as how it encourages people to get out and walk more, since Pokémon are clustered around parks and other walkable areas.

I enjoyed this article about how some enterprising players have set up digital shop in helping new players “level up” or catch rare Pokémon.

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The Craft of Editing a Very Short Story

Lydia Davis, an author of “very short stories” for more than 40 years, described her editing process in feature for The Atlantic. The image above contains the original handwritten text. She then made these edits: 1. The two dogs and two cats, as well as the mice, were part of my real situation, but I…

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What Is Freedom?

For me, everything began with the notion of freedom—the ability to determine the course of my daily schedule and overall life direction. I was very motivated by the opportunity to decide for myself. A normal job didn't fit into those parameters, so I did everything I could to create my own employment and well-being. But that was early on. Freedom is still extremely important to me. I'll walk away from any business deal or career option that restricts my choices or limits future decisions in a way that doesn't feel right ...

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It’s Not the Process, It’s Not the End Result, It’s the Act of Making Things

We all know there is a problem in focusing entirely on the end result. When you reach the end, what comes next? What if the end wasn't what you really wanted? That's why you have to love the milestones along the way, reminders that you appreciate what you're doing and that it's all for a good cause. But there's also a problem in focusing entirely on process. Working strictly on process takes you away from the big picture can lead you astray. Besides, it's OK to have goals, right?

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The Feeling of the Entire Day Unfolding Around You

In JFK I got on the 16-hour Cathay Pacific flight to Hong Kong. It was 3pm in the New York afternoon, and 3am in HKG—exactly halfway around the world. The Boeing 777 took off, I had lunch, and I took a short nap. I always set my watch to the destination time when boarding a flight, so it was now sunrise in Hong Kong ... with 13 hours to go. What's next?

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1,000 Days After Overnight Success

More than two years ago, I wrote a free manifesto on becoming a professional writer in less than a year. It was called 279 Days to Overnight Success, and the purpose was to outline the roadmap I had followed in crafting a new career after moving back to the U.S. from overseas and finishing grad school. Somewhere around 15% of the total AONC readership can be traced to the worldwide interest in this manifesto, so I thought I'd take a quick look back at the lessons from it.

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Life In the Tower, Somaliland Edition

Many thanks to everyone who has been reading or supporting the launch of The Tower, my new manifesto. If you missed it on Tuesday, you can pick up your free copy in a range of formats. I also want to thank my long-time friend and colleague Reese Spykerman, specialist in branding and magic, for her great work on the design. Reese truly raised her game on this one as we worked on telling a story through words and images.

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Notes from a Cold Bathroom Floor in South Africa

Tomorrow I'll be headed to Madagascar, the final stop of my latest trip before I begin the long process of returning home. But at the moment, I've been spending the past three hours sitting on the floor of the bathroom during a brief stopover in Johannesburg. Why the bathroom? Because it's freezing here in Johannesburg—we're now in the middle of the southern hemisphere winter—and the only heater in my room is located by the sink.

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Rain Running

Every Sunday morning that I'm in town, I head out for a long run. Two weekends ago at the waterfront, the weather was glorious. The whole city of Portland took up jogging or cycling. Last weekend at the waterfront, the weather was more to our usual end-of-Spring form ... rainy and gloomy. The whole city of Portland stayed indoors. On the sunny day, joggers and cyclists smiled at each other with a mutual appreciation of our good fortune. The implied message was, “It's good to be alive!”

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Feeling Stuck? Try This

If you're involved in any kind of creative work, you and inertia are probably well acquainted. I wish I were an exception, but no—inertia and I are mortal enemies. Every day I get up and fight a battle against that beast. Sometimes I win; sometimes I lose. Sometimes we get “stuck” in something and have a hard time figuring out what to do next. If you're feeling stuck, try one or more of these ideas ...

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Sitting Out the Global Recession?

Sitting-Out-Recession

I’m about to get on a plane and head out to Washington, D.C. by way of Seattle and Chicago. After a few days there, I’ll begin a longer journey to several countries in Southern Africa. Expect more about the trip later. For now, something else has come up – specifically, the small matter of the global economic recession.

Unless you live on another planet (you never know), I’m going to assume that you’ve noticed it too... and there are probably as many opinions about what’s happening as there are readers of this post. Today I want to look at one specific question:

"Is it possible to completely avoid the effect of a serious global recession?"

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