10 Best How-To Books Ever Written


Somebody once said there are more book titles beginning with the words "how to" than with anything else. Perhaps that's because we all want to learn to do things better.

I've spent hours combing library shelves for how-to titles. (I've also spent several minutes combing my hair, but that's another story.)

What follows is a completely subjective list of outstanding books that teach us how to improve ourselves. Warning: Some of these titles do NOT begin with the words "how to."

1. "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie - written in 1936 - offers great tips on "six ways of making people like you," "12 ways of winning people to your way of thinking," and much, much more. It's one of history's greatest guides.

2. "How to Make Your Advertising Make Money" by researcher John Caples provides great advice for just about anybody, especially those looking for ideas to help them write better.

3. "Simplify Your Life" by Elaine St. James offers "100 ways to slow down and enjoy the things that really matter."

4."The 100 Simple Secrets of Successful People" by David Niven, Ph.D. talks about the "traits, beliefs, and practices" successful people share.

5. "Tuesdays with Morrie" by Mitch Albom tells the true story of a dying professor who offers great lessons on living. It's a wonderful book for any reader.

6."Free Publicity" by Jeff Crilley. This "TV reporter shares the secrets of getting covered on the news."

7. "Panati's Extraordinary Origins of Everyday Things" by Charles Panati discusses the origin of hundreds of "items, expressions, and customs," and offers fascinating facts.

8. "The Practical Guide to Practically Everything" by Peter Bernstein and Christopher Ma offers ideas and advice on many, many subjects.

9. "What Every American Should Know About American History" by Dr. Alan Axelrod and Charles Phillips discusses "200 events that shaped the nation."

10."Cracking the Network Code" by Dean Lindsay. This terrific book from Lindsay - a popular business speaker - offers ideas for "meeting, connecting, and developing long-term relationships with co-workers and others."

Rix Quinn wrote the new book "Words That Stick," a practical writing guide for people who hate to write. It's available from your local bookstore, or www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1580085768/qid/">http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1580085768/qid/


MORE RESOURCES:
Novelist V.S. Naipaul, who won the Nobel Prize in literature, has died at his home in London aged 85. He was born in rural Trinidad in 1932 and wrote more than 30 books including A Bend in the River and his masterpiece, A House for Mr Biswas.

Bookmarks Bookshop, a socialist bookstore in Bloomsbury, in London, has received outpourings of support after 12 far-right protesters stormed in and vandalized the store on Saturday evening, the Guardian reported.

As two staff members were closing the store on August 4, a dozen men, one of them wearing a Donald Trump mask, entered the store and began "knocking over displays and ripping up magazines while chanting far-right slogans." It is believed that the men took part in demonstrations earlier that day protesting the "censorship" of Alex Jones's website InfoWars.

Although Amazon's sales in the U.K. continue to grow--rising 20%, to $11.4 billion, in 2017--for the second straight year the company was able to halve the amount of corporate tax it paid.

The Washington Post asks why China is so afraid of author and book publisher Gui Minhai (also known as Michael Gui):

Gui Minhai, a Chinese-born Swedish citizen, was riding a train from Shanghai to Beijing in the company of two Swedish diplomats in January when 10 Chinese plainclothesmen stormed aboard, lifted him up and carried him off the train and out of sight.

Three weeks later, Gui was paraded before Chinese media to recite a bizarre and apparently coerced confession. He hasn't been heard from since.

This is what passes for the rule of law in China today.

I think of Gui sometimes when I hear Chinese President Xi Jinping boasting about a country that "has stood up, grown rich and is becoming strong."

Would a truly strong and self-confident nation behave this way? Why would it feel the need to kidnap -- for the second time, no less -- a peaceable 54-year-old gentleman such as Gui and keep him, in poor health, locked up for, now, more than a thousand days?

New research suggests that Dr. Seuss's Lorax is based on a particular monkey that the writer encountered in Kenya...

Recently, a group of researchers posited that the Lorax is not entirely invented, like Sam I Am or Things 1 and 2. Instead, it's inspired by a particular real-life species, a fuzzy-faced primate called the patas monkey that Geisel got to know in Kenya. Their conclusion, a paper called "Dr. Seuss and the Real Lorax," was published in Nature Ecology & Evolution earlier this week.

Do you have a habit of picking up books that you never quite get around to reading?

If this sounds like you, you might be unwittingly engaging in tsundoku - a Japanese term used to describe a person who owns a lot of unread literature.

One of the many great things about languages worldwide is the sizeable number of words for which there is no real English translation. Often they tell us about concepts and ideas that we are missing out on in the anglophone world.

As the northern hemisphere heads abroad in the coming holiday season, here are a few to be looking out for:

SPAIN: sobremesa
You may have witnessed the ritual, knowingly or not, while on the hunt for a coffee or a cold beer towards the end of another long Spanish afternoon...

"Lost" material from The Autobiography of Malcolm X, reportedly seen as too controversial to publish in the 1960s, has emerged this week at an auction in New York.

Along with the original typed manuscript, which reveals the back and forth between the black activist and his collaborator Alex Haley, to whom he told his story, the unpublished writing was put up for sale on Thursday by New York auctioneer Guernsey's. The papers, including an unpublished chapter and a series of unpublished pages, were acquired by the New York Public Library's Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.

Even the light of 200 birthday candles couldn't pierce the gloom of "Wuthering Heights." But the fire that burned within Emily Brontë roars across the centuries.

How remarkable that on the bicentennial of her birth, this reclusive woman should still be crying at our window like Catherine, "Let me in -- let me in! I'm come home!" ...

The Guardian posted the Man Booker Prize longlist early, in advance of Wednesday's scheduled announcement, and then promptly took it down. But the list survived in the Google cache and across social media and thus is now public.

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