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If watching stale old festive films and TV reruns isn’t your bag, you might want to pick up a few books to see you through the Christmas break. We quizzed our contributors to see what they recommend and here’s a reading list in no particular order.

51zf0fcf0ll-_sx317_bo1204203200_Ugly is Only Skin Deep

by Dominik Imseng 

My friend Dominik published this book a couple of months ago. It’s the story of advertising’s creative revolution in the late 1950s (and – by gum! – does it need another one now!) He tells the story of the people, the companies and the campaigns that changed ad-land. I highly recommend it (as you’ll see on the second page of the book).

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51oigdqhcal-_sy385_bo1204203200_Copy, Copy, Copy

by Mark Earls 

We’ll be featuring an interview with Mark very soon. But his latest book is one that brilliantly shows how new ideas are often adaptations of old ones. And not only does he give you great examples, he explains very practically how to do it. You can even get a special pack of artefact cards that you can use to help you generate ideas immediately.

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More festive gift ideas to feed your mind and inspire ideasClick To Tweet

51yoansklhl-_sx382_bo1204203200_Design Essentials for the Motion Media Artist

by Angie Taylor

Angie is a contributor-to-be and has a written a couple of books on motion graphics. Her latest book here has 5 star reviews on Amazon. If you – or any of your loved ones – are interested in animation and moving images, this is the book that will really improve your skills.

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51emxrh7nll-_sx311_bo1204203200_Nobody wants to read your sh*t

by Steven Pressfield

The author believes that this blunt and painful truth is what can change you from an amateur to a professional. And I think he’s got a great point. You can use it to generate more empathy and understanding of your audience. You can use it to connect more deeply with them and create something they’ll really want. And it’s just as important for creativity in business as it is in creating works of art.

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sapiens-a-brief-history-of-humankindSapiens

by Yuval Noah Harari

This book blew me away earlier in the year. I kept putting my kindle down to tell me wife about what I’d just read. It’s the story of humans from beasts roaming the African savannahs through the birth of civilisation to the modern mind. It’s beautifully written and offers you a completely different perspective on humanity.

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by Tina Seelig

We posted a TED talk from Tina a couple of weeks ago. She’s a super-inspiring professor and one of the brains behind the Stanford d.school. It’s a practical book about innovation. When there’s so much echo-chamber dross around the subject of innovation, this book is a refreshing and intelligent alternative.
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by Dave Birss

And finally, a little plug for my own book. You can get it for free by subscribing to the site. But if you’re a lover of paper books – or enjoy scribbling notes in the margin – you can get the paper version right here. There’s even a little photo of me at the back that you can cut out, put in an expensive frame and place lovingly on your desk at work.

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If watching stale old festive films and TV reruns isn’t your bag, you might want to pick up a few books to see you through the Christmas break. We quizzed our contributors to see what they recommend and here’s a reading list in no particular order. Ugly is Only Skin Deep by...
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Dave Birss
Founder and Editor at OpenForIdeas.org
Dave is obsessed with creativity. He's been a musician, illustrator, stand-up comedian, poet, radio DJ, television presenter and advertising creative director. He also wrote A User Guide to the Creative Mind.
Now he runs Open for Ideas and helps individuals and companies become more creative.
You can find him speaking at conferences all over the world. And sharing his thinking in boardrooms, universities and dimly-lit pubs.