The Jottery: Thought Experiments for Everyday Philosophers and Part-Time Geniuses by Andy Selsberg
Review by Lauren
Source: publisher sent a copy; all opinions are my own
Official Summary: In The Jottery, you’ll find a series of prompts,
suggestions, commands, and questions that are intended to cause neurons
to fire and a spectrum of ideas to surface–possibly good, potentially
useful, conceivably profitable, maybe illuminating, and hopefully
amusing. There’s also a chance you’ll come up with nothing, and
experience a beautiful “idea-lessness” that would be the envy of Zen
monks everywhere. Also a win.
Review: This book reminds me a bit of those Wreck This Book titles, except instead of doodling on random pages or ripping another to shreds, this book is full of random ideas and questions to get you thinking…and hopefully writing. There is a bit of room after each prompt where you could write in the book, if you wished, but it’s also a place to jot ideas or thoughts before using another medium for your actual writing.
I wish writing classes had books like these as part of the curriculum. It would be a great way to get people writing and seeing what they can discover about themselves and their imagination.
Here are some examples from the book (in bold) and my own answers.
What could ATMs dispense, other than money?
Gift Cards – Books (I’d really love the book idea).
Your personal trainer instructs you to do fifteen dudesquats. Describe what you do.
Squat down into a chair (basically just sit) and eat some chips, watch some television. Repeat fifteen times per week.
Now it’s your turn! How would you answer either of these prompts? Do share in the comment section!