Author(s): Andy Selsberg
In "The Jottery, " you'll find a series of prompts, suggestions, commands, and questions that are intended to cause neurons to fire and a spectrum of ideas to surface--possibly good, potentially useful, conceivably profitable, maybe illuminating, and hopefully amusing. There's also a chance you'll come up with nothing, and experience a beautiful "idea-lessness" that would be the envy of Zen monks everywhere. Also a win. Think of this as The Book of Questions for creative types, from writers and artists, to idea gurus and daydreamers, perfect for writing classes, train rides, parties, meditation retreats, game nights, insomnia bouts, lulls in dates or low points in relationships, company brainstorming meetings, waiting rooms, therapy sessions, and more. The dozens of ingenious prompts include: You create something called Soul Lotion. What are the best places to rub it? (Don't limit your answer to human body parts.)You're commissioned to design a bridge to nowhere. Briefly describe possible nowheres you might build it to.Where did the fun go? Suggest four hyper-specific places. If you do manage to track the fun down and tie it to a chair, what do you do or do with it?You're commissioned to write a pilot script for a post-apocalyptic sitcom. It's based not on the "next" post-apocalyptic period, but the one after that, after a new civilization arises and collapses. What are seven things you do to celebrate this cool new job?You design vending machines that sell things that are not physical objects. Like what? And for how much?List twelve things you can have instead of "it all."List a handful of elevator tension-breakers, and a handful of elevator tension-makers.
Andy Selsberg is a former staff writer for the "Onion," and his writing has appeared in the "New York Times, GQ," the "Village Voice, Salon," the "Oxford American," and the "Believer," among other publications. He is the author of You Are Good at Things and "Dear Old Love."