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10 Books that Shaped Our Business, 2018

The ability to self-educate is a key skill for running a small business. It’s been critical to the growth of our SaaS copywriting firm Lewis Commercial Writing.

Combined, we’ve read a lot of books in 2018. Some fiction (This Boy’s Life by Tobias Wolff -Sarabeth), some science nonfiction (The Tangled Tree by David Quammen -Alex), and a whole lot of business how-to (both of us).

After some careful consideration, here are the 10 books that informed our business decisions and boosted our growth in 2018:

1. Deep Work by Cal Newport

In the age of social media and distracting open office plans, focused attention has become a rare skill to come by. At the same time, highly-skilled work requires deep focus more than ever. In Cal Newport’s book Deep Work, he argues that the most important, well-paid workers of the future will be those who know how to block out distractions. They will be the ones doing the work that matters. -Alex

2. On Writing Well by William Zinsser

This is one of the classics. For those who want to learn the techniques of good writing, On Writing Well is up there with The Elements of Style and Stephen King’s On Writing. With clear techniques, inspirational anecdotes, and lessons that have stood the test of time, Zinsser offers a guide that is both practical and enjoyable. -Alex

3. Content Design by Sarah Richards

Sarah Richards has become something of a hero to me. Content Design is a book unlike any other. If you want to learn how to produce and organize user-centered content online, Sarah’s book is the place to start.