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Accidental Genius: Using Writing to Generate Your Best Ideas, Insight, and Content Paperback – Jul 16 2010

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers; 2 edition (July 16 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1605095257
  • ISBN-13: 978-1605095257
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.4 x 21.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 272 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #337,670 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


“I’ve been a fanboy of "Accidental Genius" and the genius of Mark Levy for five years now, and I couldn’t work without these ideas.” —David Meerman Scott, author of "The New Rules of Marketing and PR"

"I've been a fanboy of "Accidental Genius" and the genius of Mark Levy for five years now, and I couldn't work without these ideas."--David Meerman Scott, author of "The New Rules of Marketing and PR"

I ve been a fanboy of "Accidental Genius" and the genius of Mark Levy for five years now, and I couldn t work without these ideas. David Meerman Scott, author of "The New Rules of Marketing and PR"

About the Author

Mark Levy is the founder of Levy Innovation, a marketing strategy firm. Levy works as a consultant to entrepreneurial companies where he dramatically increases fess through positioning, ideation, and book coaching. He also works as the CMA of Creative Realities LLC, an experiential branding and marketing firm that creates powerful and innovative environments and experiences. As a consultant, Mark Levy gives multiple speeches, talks, and webinars annually. In addition to writing articles for national newspapers, including the New York Times, and industry magazines, such as American Bookseller, Levy served as co-creator and magic consultant on the book Magic for Dummies, which is widely considered to be the most valuable primer on magic ever written. Levy is also the author of How to Persuade People Who Don't Want to Be Persuaded. Mark Levy teaches Writing for Businesses and Professionals at Rutgers University. Mark Levy lives in Lebanon, New Jersey.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
Chalked full of great creativity insights. Mark dives deep into the creative process and sparks several 'never thought of it that way...' moments throughout the book. I particularly liked his use of 'free-writing' to get to the truth of something, may it be in your business or just during a crummy day. His methods get me out a creative funk and back into a productive mindset faster then any other technique I've tried. The marathon writing is extremely useful (although extremely intimidating at first!).
Great read, highly recommended for those willing to give an unorthodox method a try. Surely not to disappoint.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars 60 reviews
92 of 98 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How to write efficiency and crank stuff out July 23 2010
By David Meerman Scott - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
In a typical year, I'll write one full-length book, a smaller ebook, about 100 blog posts and deliver about 50 talks all over the world.

People ask me all the time how I can be so prolific. "Where do all your ideas come from?" they ask.

The answer is simple: I put my internal editor on hold for first drafts. This allows me to crank stuff out very quickly. A technique called "Freewriting" that I learned from Mark Levy in his terrific "Accidental Genius" allows me to get ideas down very quickly without seeing if it is "good."

With Freewriting, I write and write and write for ten minutes or thirty minutes without caring about spelling or grammar. Then I look for nuggets of inspiration, which I edit to become blog posts. The better blog posts then become raw materials for books and stories in my speeches.

Accidental Genius is your guide to Freewriting. But it more than that. It is your guide to success.
77 of 82 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A powerful method to see things differently, come up with new ideas, and create compelling content July 19 2010
By Larina Kase - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I read the first edition of Accidental Genius several years ago, was moved by it, hired Mark Levy to help me with positioning, and have had the privilege of getting to know him. I don't say this about many people (in fact I don't think I've said it about anyone) but this guy is a genius. The more you read about him, the more you'll see how many people use the word "genius" to describe him. This is not a coincidence.

How did he become a "genius"? Well, I think he's naturally bright, but I also think it's because he practices what he preaches. He regularly uses the freewriting ideas he teaches in this book. These ideas help you to see what other people don't see, and see what you typically don't see. Freewriting is how Mark sees things differently, which is the heart of "genius".

Mark may be a genius, but his approach is completely simple, hands-on, creative, fun, and doable by anyone. Here's how it works...

When we set out to solve a problem, position ourselves or our businesses, come up with interesting new ideas, or anything else that determines a "solution" we face a problem: Our internal editor takes over. It wants to keep things status quo, safe, low-risk. We reproduce the same type of ideas and remain stuck in place. Of course this comes at a cost, which is that we prevent breakthroughs and neglect our own genius.

What we need to do is to quiet this internal editor, but we can't just say, "shhh!" Instead we need an approach that circumvents this editor and silences it. Freewriting is one such way to silence the editor and allow our inner genius to speak.

The method of writing in Accidental Genius has 6 basic tenets, such as "Try Easy," and "Go with the Thought," and numerous specific techniques such as "Open Up Words," and "Hold a Paper Conversation". If you've read the first edition, be sure to read this one as well, there's a lot of new stuff including how to create an inventory of ideas that you can use in social media or whenever you need them. Enjoy, and get ready for groundbreaking ideas to start flowing.
5.0 out of 5 stars Just buy it! Aug. 12 2016
By Ricardo Pérez Fernández de Castro - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Great book. Truly insightful and easy to read
23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's "just about freewriting," or is it just that? Dec 23 2011
By ECD - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One line summary: this book was the first on my mind when I was asked about the most useful books to me in 2011.

Somebody may look at this book and say, "Well, it's just about freewriting. I don't need a book to tell me to just write a bunch of words on the page." Even I was saying that after the first few chapters. But after completing the book, I realized that the book wasn't "just about freewriting," it was a general technique for getting past your inner critic, truly brainstorm solutions to a problem, and come to a decision that is more correct, because you have considered all the options without censorship. I lock up when it comes to decision making, and the process pushed me to open up on why I get stuck on these decisions, and all too often once those blocks are out of the bag, the solution presents itself in that free flow of ideas. I like to call it unthinking my way out of a problem.

I have used the techniques to dig into some philosophical conflicts I have had recently. They have given me a new clarity about my career and my outside interests, and gotten me a little bit closer to that thing that is the purpose of my life. So yes, it is "just about freewriting," but the technique unlocks so much more if you stick with it.
30 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must Read Genius Book! July 22 2010
By nettie reynolds - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is filled with incredible insight for writers, entrepreneurs, thought leaders and marketers. I highly recommend it to anyone who is interested how to break out of their rut of ideas and find new ways to position themselves.

Levy's insight on freewriting and how to incorporate it is fantastic. It has inspired me to keep a journal and re-evaluate all of my work processes. Chapter 4 titled, "Secret 4: Write the Way You Think" is invaluable. The process that Levy takes the reader through in Chapter 13: Getting A Hundred Ideas is Easier Than Getting One" is spot-on for marketers, writers and idea generators.

This book is a must read!