Are the productivity tools you need already in your pocket?

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Photo by Alexander Schimmeck on Unsplash

I have a hard time keeping track of the things I read online. I want to write more reflection and review pieces, but if I don’t immediately and rigorously reflect on something I’ve read or watched, it simply evaporates from my brain.

Last summer, I read a clever little book written by a 1930s ad man named James Webb Young, which I highly recommend. It’s called A Technique for Producing Ideas, and it lays out a 5 step technique for producing creative content:

  1. Gather raw materials.

Creativity is…


The write support system. Get it?

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Photo by Van Tay Media on Unsplash

On the night I graduated from the top law school in the country, my parents sat me down and asked me, “What will you do when you fail?”

That’s right, on what was supposed to be one of the happiest days of my life, my parents spent over an hour lecturing me about how I’d thrown my life away by abandoning a career in law to become a writer.

For most of the four years that have followed that conversation, I’ve felt like an imposter. …


10 strategies for reading 50+ books in just one year.

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Photo by Dev Asangbam on Unsplash

I have a confession to make: last year, I read embarrassingly few books for someone who calls herself a writer. Seriously, I tried to make a list of the books I read this year, and I could only count 10. I’m sure I read a few more, but honestly, much of this year has been a blur.

Some people found 2020 a triumphant year for their reading goals. Cooped up in their apartments with nowhere to go, they devoured book after book after book.

I, too, started the year with grand ambitions, but the pandemic quickly wrecked those. In a…


Brunch can wait.

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This week has been a tough one for writing. The topics I’ve been able to wrap my head around enough to write about feel too trivial in this moment, and everything worth writing about requires quite a bit more research, discussion, and grappling on my part before it’s ready to publish.

But here’s one thing I’ve been thinking about:

I came across this video election night from the Matamoros refugee camp. In it, men, women, and children standing in a tent, bundled up, singing along to evangelical hymns as they wait for the election results to come in.

Matamoros…


The pandemic has accelerated automation in non-creative fields, but are creative jobs vulnerable, too?

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Photo by Photos Hobby on Unsplash

Since the 1700s, when Luddites started smashing English looms, automation has been putting people out of work.

In the 20th century, automation took over manufacturing jobs, data entry jobs, manual computing jobs. Now, breakthroughs in “deep learning” have exponentially increased the number of jobs that can be automated. McKinsey estimates that, by 2030, as much as 30% of work will be done by machines, displacing almost 400 million workers.

If you’re entering the job market or considering a career change, you’re probably wondering whether your job will still be around 20 years from now.

AI is now being used to…


What to do when the little voice in your head tells you you’re not good enough.

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Photo by Charles Etoroma on Unsplash

“The counterfeit innovator is wildly self-confident. The real one is scared to death.”- Steven Pressfield, The War of Art

Four years ago, I decided to become a writer. I’d just graduated from law school and was so repelled by the idea of being a lawyer that I moved to New York City and began pursuing my life long dream of becoming a writer. I’d written a (very bad) draft of a sci-fi novel while in school, but I wasn’t singularly focused on that project. Really, I just wanted to make a living from writing anyway I could.

In the beginning…

Kaye Dems

Freelancer, former lawyer, aspiring novelist. Kind of a New Yorker. In awe of everyday things.

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