Think Better

Dear Scriveners,

I’m pleased (and relieved) to say that a few minutes ago, I sent off the final
MS of my book, Think Better, to my publisher McGraw Hill. The text is in, the
art is in, interior pages and cover have been designed, and the whole thing
is now in the production process. Next step is pages for review and tweaking, then
galleys to send to a series of kind folks who may be willing to write nice words.

Think Better is scheduled for launch in November.

I wanted to say a big thank you to you, Keith. I don’t think I’d be celebrating
this milestone if it weren’t for Scrivener.

All the best to all of you,


Congrats! Now…what’s the book about?

Congratulations, Tim! Now relax and have a glass of wine!


That’s fantastic!!! Many, many congratulations!! If you have a moment to share a bit about Think Better, it would be interesting to know more. But in any case, yes, kick back and bask in the glow of having it finished!!!



congratulations from the land of kaizen as well. I am surprised that Keith recommends a glass of wine instead of beer, but I second that!



With what confusion thinking’s fraught,
I sometimes think I’ll think no more,
For when I spend much time in thought,
I unthink things I thought before!


Excellent news Tim. All the very best for the launch.

Thanks for asking, mamster. Most people think they think as well as they can,
that thinking skills are somehow innate. But research has shown that thinking
skills of all kinds can be taught and practiced. An analogy might be that when
you buy a BMW, you may not get all you can out of it, unless you learn some
new skills.

For many years I’ve been studying and working with creativity. And a big question
for me has been: How is it some people are highly creative and some people less so?

I’ve discovered that there are several key indicators, almost all of which are
behavioural! In other words, people can learn to think more creatively.

I’ve developed a method (based on lots of other people’s work) that can substantially
improve creative output. It’s called productive thinking. Using productive
thinking techniques, you can have more ideas, better ideas, more of the time.
It’s really quite amazing.

Some people (particularly in the arts) think this is hogwash and that creativity
is innate. My work suggests that creative intelligence is a skill that anyone can
learn and cultivate.

Will some people always be more creative than others? Of course. But whatever
the engine you start with, whether it’s a BMW or a Skoda, you can learn to use it better.

The book presents background and method for doing so.

Thanks for asking!


Wow! Can’t wait to read a copy. November, you say? Will there be a UK edition?


Sounds great.

Can you post a short reminder here when the book is available?

Thanks, Franz

Count me among the interested–I can use all the help I can get.


crimewriter: yes there will be a UK edition. I believe the UK and US launches will
be within a few weeks of one another.

Franz: yes, I will be happy to post a reminder as the launch approaches
(as long as people in the forum don’t object to the crass commercialism.8))

Also, those of you who know a bit about the field of creativity might be interested
to know that, Roger von Oech (A Whack on the Side of the Head) and Sid Parnes
(The Magic of Your Mind) have both already agreed to blurb the book.

All the best,


The reminder would be really useful, Tim.



For those of you who might be interested, I am posting a preliminary, pre-publication
flyer that the marketing people from McGraw Hill put together. A little over the top maybe,
but that’s marketing!

As you can see it’s being marketed to a business audience*, though many of the anecdotes
in the book are general. The productive thinking process is about creative thinking per se,
not necessarily in any particular domain.

All the best,


*Those who buy the book will become rich, achieve instant fame, and realize their wildest fantasies.
Those who don’t won’t.


The cover art looks like the morning after a Pink Floyd photo shoot. :slight_smile:

Actually, Amber, this is just a mock-up.
The final art has about three times as many discarded bulbs in it!

:bulb: :bulb: :bulb:
:bulb: :unamused: :bulb:
:bulb: :bulb: :bulb:


Congratulations! A better way of thinking is highly desirable to me, so I’ll take the book as soon as it is out.


At first glance, just scrolling quickly down the page, I thought they were nice, fat penguins! Which was very sweet, but didn’t make a lot of sense, even in my surreal world. Lightbulbs are much more sensible. That’ll teach me to skim through visual stuff instead of looking at it properly - if I’d focused on the picture, I wouldn’t have had to spend such a long time trying to work out what the Pink Floyd reference meant :slight_smile: Must get my eyes checked again…

I’ll watch out for your book in the shops :slight_smile: Wishing you lots of luck with it.

P.S. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with your artwork - they’re definitely lightbulbs. It’s just that I was using the wrong eye and should have been wearing my glasses.

Thanks Paolo. Given that a number of people here have said they might be interested
in looking at the book, I will find out from the publisher if there is some discount
arrangement that can be made for members of the forum. I have no idea yet if this is
possible or even how it might work, but it’s worth a try. I will post something as soon
as I find out (which may not be for a while). Again, thanks for your interest.

All the best,


Now that’s funny! One of the sections of the book talks about the relationship
of the aha! response (to an insight of some sort) to the haha! response of humour.
I don’t think I could have illustrated that relationship better than you did with your fat
penguins, Siren. Many, many thanks!


PS The third response is the aah… response to beauty. So humour, insight, beauty.

What about the “AAAH!!!” response? Total abject terror? I find I use that one quite a bit… :slight_smile: