Mix Tape Mastery

I miss the days of mix tapes. CDs were fine too. Yes, I know you can still do playlists, but the skill of the mix tape master was to optimise the content within the limited amount of playtime. As soon as the playtime limits are removed the skill of curation was lost.

I wasn't particularly good at it really, but I had a few people I knew that were excellent. A mix from them would give you more than just listening to some good songs. The songs would flow from one to another. There'd often be some sort of theme connecting them. They always introduced me to new artists. I didn't necessarily like all of them, but when I did (and most often I did) I would then go off and explore their other offerings and expand my musical library.

I listened to the Maria Popova interview on the Tim Ferris podcast this morning and she shared a similar story about how she views literature. She described books as being the original internet. How authors referencing other texts and writers was like a hyperlink. New areas of knowledge to be explored that you might not otherwise have come across.

I think that's a good position for a writer, particularly a non-fiction writer, to take.  To consider; how can I distil all that I have learnt from these different information sources into something that incites curiosity in the person that reads my work. So that they can expand their intellectual and humanistic library.