It’s been a whirlwind year for Matt Inman, #1 New York Times bestselling author and the mastermind behind The Oatmeal—one of the internet’s most beloved comics. In May, Tesla CEO Elon Musk agreed to donate $1 million toward the completion of a Nikola Tesla museum, a project Inman’s been working on since 2012. Then, in June, he was awarded the Eisner Award for “Best Digital/Webcomic” at San Diego Comic Con. Today, Andrews McMeel published his latest book: The Terrible and Wonderful Reasons Why I Run Long Distances.
“This is not just a book about running,” Inman writes. “It’s a book about cupcakes. It’s a book about suffering. It’s a book about gluttony, vanity, bliss, electrical storms, ranch dressing, and Godzilla. It’s a book about all the terrible and wonderful reasons we wake up each day and propel our bodies through rain, shine, heaven, and hell.” Runners will love his hilarious observations about the world of marathons—an early excerpt from the book was published in June by Runner’s World Magazine. But these insightful comics are meant for a much larger audience: The Terrible and Wonderful Reasons is sure to resonate with anyone who’s ever done anything borderline insane, and then tried to explain why on earth they did it. The book features over 100 pages of new comics. It also features stickers.
Already, The Terrible and Wonderful Reasons Why I Run Long Distances is a Barnes & Noble in-store bestseller and has been selected as an Amazon “Best Books of the Month” pick. Not only will the author kick off his book tour tomorrow, but he’ll also be hosting the Beat the Blerch marathon series, where you, too, can be chased around by a fat little cherub while you run long distances.
Praise for The Terrible and Wonderful Reasons Why I Run Long Distances
“The hilarious and the profound are often only inches apart, and Inman consistently nails the space between them.” – Kirkus Reviews
“There’s a thrill that comes from simply being physically active. Even if you don’t intend to aim for perfect looks or health – the process of running brings countless rewards. And Inman beautifully expresses quite a few with his geek chic humor in this short volume.” — Michael Walsh, NY Daily News
“The perfect book for anyone who’s ever felt torn between eating cake and running in a big sweaty circle.” – Ryan North, Eisner Award winning author of Adventure Time Comics and Dinosaur Comics
“He runs. He sweats. He heaves. He hates it. He loves it. He runs so hard his toenails fall off. He asks himself, why? Why do I do this? Here, gorgeously, bravely, hilariously, is Matt’s deeply honest answer.” – Robert Krulwich, NPR
Shalom! The popular blog Porn4Jews, run by Sarah Rosen, has attracted thousands of fans for its humorous depiction Jewish values mixed with modern-day memes.
Rosen’s first book, Kosher Porn, takes the very best of her website and condenses it into a portable book that is nudity-free, 100 percent kosher-certified, and downright hilarious. It is a perfect gift for all, Jewish and non-Jewish alike.
Sarah Rosen is an actress and writer. She graduated from Yale with a BA in Film Studies and studied acting at the William Esper Studio. She lives in Brooklyn.
Check out the Kosher Porn short, which proves that there is such a thing as love at first bite.
All eyes were on Betty Halbreich at the release party of her memoir I’ll Drink to That: A Life in Style, With a Twist, hosted September 4 at Bergdorf Goodman in New York City.
On the heels of fashion week, this event celebrated not only Ms. Halbreich’s memoir, but also her influence in the industry, where she has spent nearly forty years as the legendary personal shopper at Bergdorf Goodman. She is trusted by the most discriminating persons—including Hollywood’s top stylists—to tell them what looks best.
According to The Wall Street Journal, Halbreich said, “‘I don’t like the crowds and the people-watching. Dear God, I’ll be glad to get this over with. I have 300 people coming tonight whose names I’m not going to remember.’ This star-studded event included big names such as designers Zac Posen, Isaac Mizrahi, Duro Olowu, and Bergdorf Goodman’s Linda Fargo, and Lena Dunham, who is developing a HBO series loosely-based off Ms. Halbreich’s life.
I’ll Drink to That chronicles Ms. Halbreich’s personal transformation from a cosseted young girl to a fearless truth teller, proving that ambition is the key to success. She now humbly hopes her memoir will inspire others. “I really wanted people to know that you can pull yourself up from the bottom of the well,” she said.
Cheers to Betty!
In a series of conversational observations and meditations on the writing process, The Art of Slow Writing examines the benefits of writing slowly. DeSalvo advises her readers to explore their creative process on deeper levels by getting to know themselves and their stories more fully over a longer period of time. She writes in the same supportive manner that encourages her students, using the slow writing process to help them explore the complexities of craft. The Art of Slow Writing is the antidote to self-help books that preach the idea of fast-writing, finishing a novel a year, and quick revisions. DeSalvo makes a case that more mature writing often develops over a longer period of time and offers tips and techniques to train the creative process in this new experience.
DeSalvo describes the work habits of successful writers (among them, Nobel Prize laureates) so that readers can use the information provided to develop their identity as writers and transform their writing lives. It includes anecdotes from classic American and international writers such as John Steinbeck, Henry Miller, Virginia Woolf and D. H. Lawrence as well as contemporary authors such as Michael Chabon, Junot Diaz, Jeffrey Eugenides, Ian McEwan, and Salman Rushdie. DeSalvo skillfully and gently guides writers to not only start their work, but immerse themselves fully in the process and create texts they will treasure.
“Leavened by her own elegant and energetic prose, The Art of Slow Writing distills the wisdom of long experience. Whether in the classroom or on the page, DeSalvo is that rare teacher who is both exacting and inspiring.” – Kathryn Harrison, New York Times bestselling author of Enchantments, The Kiss, and The Binding Chair
“DeSalvo turns what might have been an exercise in navel-gazing into a lively and inspiring guide for writers of all stripes. Buy two copies – the first will quickly sprout dog-ears. – Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Virtually Human explores what the not-too-distant future will look like when cyberconsciousness—simulation of the human brain via software and computer technology—becomes part of our daily lives. Meet Bina48, the world’s most sentient robot, commissioned by Martine Rothblatt and created by Hanson Robotics. Bina48 is a nascent Mindclone of Martine’s wife that can engage in conversation, answer questions, and even have spontaneous thoughts that are derived from multimedia data in a Mindfile created by the real Bina. If you’re active on Twitter or Facebook, share photos through Instagram, or blogging regularly, you’re already on your way to creating a Mindfile—a digital database of your thoughts, memories, feelings, and opinions that is essentially a back-up copy of your mind. Soon, this Mindfile can be made conscious with special software—Mindware—that mimics the way human brains organize information, create emotions and achieve self-awareness. This may sound like science-fiction, but the nascent technology already exists. Thousands of software engineers across the globe are working to create cyberconsciousness based on human consciousness and the Obama administration recently announced plans to invest in a decade-long Brain Activity Map project. Virtually Human is the only book to examine the ethical issues relating to cyberconsciousness and Rothblatt, with a Ph.D. in medical ethics, is uniquely qualified to lead the dialogue.
“Ingenious… a thoughtful philosophical exploration of the role of virtual humans in our future” – Kirkus Reviews
“Exponential technologies are driving a new dimension of human evolution. In her compelling book, Virtually Human, Martine Rothblatt outlines how artificial consciousness is just around the corner, and explores the scientific and ethical ramifications. Science fiction is rapidly becoming science fact and the implications are breathtaking. Virtually Human is critical reading to anyone who plans to be around for the next couple of decades.”—Peter H. Diamandis, MD, CEO, XPRIZE; Exec Chairman, Singularity University; New York Times bestselling author of Abundance: The Future is Better Than You Think
“We are in the midst of a war between biological and electronic brains for dominance in our hybrid population. Bio-brains are, so far, ahead based on their inventiveness, energy-efficiency and exponential improvement rate. Will ethics asymmetrically restrict engineering humans or will it equally apply soon to ‘virtually human’ electronic brains? Martine’s insights on these and many other topics are timely and welcome.”—George Church, Harvard Professor, and author of Regenesis: How Synthetic Biology Will Reinvent Nature and Ourselves
“Virtually Human is a fascinating read that clearly brings Alan Turing into the 21st century. I have argued that we are DNA-software driven machines and as we expand digital-biological interconversions, Martine’s “mind clones” and functional avatars are a logical outcome. Only by attempting to recreate models of humans will we truly begin to understand ourselves. Virtually Human is a great beginning.” —J. Craig Venter, Ph.D., author of Life At The Speed Of Light and creator of the first synthetic cell
Martine was also just featured on the cover of New York Magazine. The article on her remarkable career and life can be seen here: http://nymag.com/news/features/martine-rothblatt-transgender-ceo. Other articles on her can also be seen at:
Eighty-six-year-old Betty Halbreich is a true original. A tough broad who could have stepped straight out of Stephen Sondheim’s repertoire, she has spent nearly forty years as the legendary personal shopper at Bergdorf Goodman, where she works with socialites, stars, and ordinary women off the street. She has helped many find their true selves through clothes, frank advice, and her own brand of wisdom. She is trusted by the most discriminating persons—including Hollywood’s top stylists—to tell them what looks best. But Halbreich’s personal transformation from a cosseted young girl to a fearless truth teller is the greatest makeover of her career.
“Sartorial style becomes a philosophy of life in this spirited memoir…Halbreich comes across as sage and gracious as she narrates a life full of incident, taking us inside the fashion industry and one of its great institutions.” —Publishers Weekly
“Every woman has a piece of clothing that she can’t live without, because in it, she feels most like herself. Betty’s memoir has that effect on a reader. Authentic style is a form of self-knowledge. And in that respect, I’ll Drink To That is like Betty’s famous three-way mirror. She sizes up her own life fearlessly, and in the process, not only helps you to diagnose your own flaws, but to embrace your own beauty.” —Judith Thurman, author of National Book Award-winning Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Storyteller and Los Angeles Times Book Award-winning Secrets of the Flesh: A Life of Colette
“Betty was born to sail through people’s lives telling them what to wear (and even what to do). The other day I overheard her chatting with a client, ‘Oh, she’s been my friend for thirty-five years, and she’s only thirty.’ Lines like that are good enough for George Cukor. The whole scanrio is. Maybe she’s known that all these years. Fashion is not only about necessity but also a form of entertainment—and that is what Betty sells.” —Isaac Mizrahi, fashion designer
In The Lenovo Way, Senior Vice President Gina Qiao and Vice President Yolanda Conyers of Lenovo discuss the best ways of managing a diverse global company and reaching optimal performance. Since its groundbreaking acquisition of IBM’s PC business in 2005, Lenovo has been #1 in global PC sales, making this book a must-read for all future business innovators.
The Lenovo Way illustrates to business leaders how to gain market share and develop new, more efficient business models. Perhaps Lenovo’s most remarkable feature as a company is that it is has roots in both the East and the West; thus, this book is a terrific case study for the best global practices of managing a business. Moreover, it tells the story of how two women from very different backgrounds became leaders within the company, paralleling Lenovo’s rise to the top of the industry. The Lenovo Way divulges not only how to gain market shares or how to create a diverse corporate culture that transcends all borders, but perhaps more importantly, it illustrates how to lead your company successfully through the chaos of change.
“If you want to grow your business and turn global opportunity into reality, read The Lenovo Way. From the new generation of female leadership, this book shares important business lessons for a global world.” — Carol Evans, President, Working Mother Media
“Through groundbreaking and innovative leadership, Lenovo has proven that ‘soft’ values can lead to huge profits. The Lenovo Way shows how they did it–and how you can too.” — Marshall Goldsmith, author of the New York Times bestseller What Got You Here Won’t Get You There
“In The Lenovo Way, authors Gina Qiao and Yolanda Conyers have mapped a course to success for future global leaders.” — Deborah Gillis, President and CEO, Catalyst