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New Grad? Here’s 10 Spot-On Tips for Job Hunting via A Beautiful Mess

9 Jun

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This article by Trey George from A Beautiful Mess has some wonderful advice for new grads and seasoned professionals considering new career moves. We’ve included highlights below, please click here to read the full article on their blog »

1. Identify your strengths, not just interests
First, you need a clear definition of yourself as a worker. Your interests are simply what you like to do, whereas your strengths are what you can offer an employer. A company only cares about your interests insomuch as it improves what you can offer them. Plus, if you start with your strengths, you open yourself up to positions you might’ve otherwise overlooked. Read More »

2. Keep the resume prioritized and concise
There could easily be a whole post about resumes. But above all else, lead with the most important information, and only make the resume as long as it needs to be.

3. Network, network, network
Where do your friends and family work? Find companies where you might fit and excel. Then, find a connection to someone with hiring power/influence. You have to find a way to get your resume to rise above those online forms they make you fill out, and nothing does that better than word of mouth within the company. Read More »

4. Informational interviews
Here’s a networking tool. Don’t overlook a company just because they’re not hiring. If you’re able to track down a valuable contact there, see if they’ll set up an informational interview to talk about their company and the kind of employee they’re looking for.

5. LinkedIn
Believe it or not, when it comes to job hunting, LinkedIn is far and away the most useful social network. It prioritizes sorting people by the company they work for. You can find a company you love and then find a person that could connect you to it. I’ve had several job recruiters find me because of it.  Read More »

6. Never overlook internships or any chance at experience
The more experience you have, the easier you make the job hunt. In general business, experience wins over education every single time. I’ve seen college dropouts with ample freelancing/contract experience get the job over people with their masters. So if you’re looking to break into a field, consider an internship. Or start freelancing for some of your friends’ small ventures or needs. Offer up free services. Employers aren’t going to ask how much you got paid to do it. They just want to see what you’ve done in a real-world situation.

7. Take any opportunity to show you care
Every piece of extra effort is noticed and appreciated. If you’re applying, definitely write a custom email (or cover letter) for each company. We can always tell when it’s copied and pasted generically. Dress up for an interview or meeting. Do your homework on the company. Learn about their values, culture, news, or just anything you can find online about them. Make it really clear you want the job. Read More »

8. Think of an interview like a conversation more than an audition
Yes, they need someone with the right skills, and the interview will mostly center on that. But more than hiring a functional set of skills, they’re hiring a friend—someone they’re going to have to be around for 40 hours a week. Ask a lot of questions about the job. As far as you’re concerned, they’re experts about the company. Make them feel like that, and be sure to show your interest in what they’re saying. Follow the rabbit trail down any tangents they want to go on. Make them laugh. I promise if they enjoy the conversation, they’ll remember you. Above all, be comfortable.

9. Follow up
This is an easy one. Again, you’re dealing with busy people. It’s very possible they didn’t get your email with your resume. Or if you’ve already interviewed, and it’s been a couple weeks, check in and see where they are in the decision-making process. Anything you can do to elevate your name a little helps. Read More »

10. Be patient and try not to get your heart set on one job
You will find several jobs that you think are the one, the kind that get you daydreaming. Most of them won’t be. You will not get the vast majority of the jobs you apply for. And don’t be discouraged by that. It’s just a game of numbers. Keep applying. Keep trying. I’ve applied for hundreds, if not thousands, of jobs in my life. It can take months, a year, or in some cases, years. You might have to take a lesser job while you continue to hunt. The only way you can guarantee you won’t get a job you love is to stop trying.

Read the full article from A Beautiful Mess right here »

18 Bookstores Book Lovers Must Visit via Business Insider

10 Feb

Taking notes from Business Insider’s Ashley Lutz on these highly recommended book havens from around the world. By the way, we’re thrilled that our very own Boulder Bookstore made the list! As huge fans of the BB, we’re sure the list of destinations is as sound as our love for our bookstore champion. Below you’ll find the the succinct list, click here to read the entire article »

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Bookstores can be a destination upon themselves. From Venice to Mexico City, check out some of the most interesting book retailers out there.

1. Libreria Acqua Alta, Venice, Italy. 

This bookstore features classic volumes of American and Italian books packed in traditional Venetian gondola boats.

2. John K. King Used And Rare Books, Detroit, Michigan. 

This houses more than a million books in an abandoned glove factory in Detroit’s industrial wasteland.

3. Boekhandel Selexyz Dominicanen in Maastricht, Holland.

This epic bookstore is a converted Dominican church from the 13th century. The serene alcoves of the church now serve as reading nooks.

4. BookPeople, Austin, Texas. 

Texas’ largest independent bookstore is situated in the trendy Market District of Austin, Texas. The store prides itself on its knowledgable staff and epic selections.

5. Strand, New York City. 

This East Village retailer boasts 18 miles of books.

6. Livraria Lello & Irmao, Porto, Portugal. 

This gorgeous, 100-year-old bookstore is known for its stunning architecture and “stairway to heaven.”

7. The Bookworm, Beijing, China. 

The Bookworm is both a lending library and a bookstore with a ridiculously expansive collection. There’s also a gourmet European cafe on the premises.

8. El Ateneo, Buenes Aires, Argentina. 

This bookstore is housed in an ornate theater building from the 1920′s. Customers can sit in still-intact theater boxes to relax and browse their books.

9. Cafebreria El Pendulo, Mexico City, Mexico. 

This bookstore and cafe has ample greenery inside.

10. Books & Books, Coral Gables, Florida.

This Miami-area bookstore is especially known for its great selection of art titles and is housed in a stunning building from the 1920′s.

11. Shakespeare and Company, Paris, France. 

The original Shakespeare & Company  on Paris’ Left Bank was a hangout for Ernest Hemingway, Ezra Pound, and James Joyce, but closed during World War Two.

12. Politics & Prose, Washington D.C. 

This bookstore in the nation’s Capitol is best-known for its amazing line-up of speakers. Past guests have included J.K. Rowling and Bill Clinton.

13. Bart’s Books, Ojai, California. 

Bart’s books is the largest outdoor bookstore in the world, and is situated in a picturesque town in Southern California.

14. Corso Como, Milan, Italy. 

This gorgeous bookstore, named one of the 10 most beautiful in the world, doubles as a flea market and is sure to keep everyone entertained.

15. Barter Books, Alnwick, UK. 

This shop used to be a train station, and miniature trains still go around the shelves. The architecture, which includes rounded ceilings and decorative lighting, is stunning.

16. Prairie Lights, Iowa City, Iowa. 

This bookstore is next door to the University of Iowa’s famous Writer’s Workshop, a program with famous alums including Kurt Vonnegut.

17. Boulder Books. 

This eclectic bookstore is known for its indie vibes and knowledgable staff.  It’s also a hub for famous authors’ readings and book signings.

18. Powell’s Books, Portland, Oregon. 

This former car dealership takes up an entire city block and boasts more than 1 million titles.

 

Catch the full article on Business Insider right here »

Link Love : Plants for Workplace Productivity & …

9 Jan

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1. We loved reading about the magical powers of desk plants from Fast Company »
2. Some of the best office memos we’ve found »
3. Get a quick (nutty) refresh and check into grammar school with the Huffington Post »
4. Starbucks has a new design plan : act local from Wired Magazine »
5. Fold your old books into a beautiful design with Weekday Carnival’s DIY tutorial »
6. Check out Nubby Twiglet’s BlogLog series, especially this one, complete with 30 content ideas for future posts »
7. Will MoMA get the grand redesign of minimalism’s dreams? »
8. Also via Nubby, the 3 major flavors of “writer’s block” — and how to get over ‘em, once + for all »

Enjoy!

Gifts to Give : Ideas from The Well Appointed Desk’s Ana Reinert

28 Nov

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! Here are some vetted gift ideas from our fave, Ana Reinert of The Well-Appointed Desk. Enjoy!

Paper goods are great gifts. The key to making a great gift is picking just the right angle. What else does your paper lover like? Movies? Cooking? Gardening? Travel? It seems every paper lover in my life also has other hobbies or interests.

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My co-worker is a foodie so I think I’ll get her a Rite in the Rain notebook with a box of Palomino Blackwing 602s and a sharpener so she record her recipes in the potentially wet, messy environment that is a working kitchen. The Cavallini Garden Calendar would look great in her kitchen too.

 

the-well-appointed-desks-gifts-to-give-ana-reinert-european-paper_05For my (geek of a) husband, I think a new Star Wars A5 Moelskine and an Eames Acme pen would make a perfect gift. And they’re cheaper than the new guitar.

 

the-well-appointed-desks-gifts-to-give-ana-reinert-european-paper_03For the bike geek in my life,  the engraved Jan Petr Obr Bicycle note cards are cool enough for any guy, bike Fred or not. To keep with the bicycling theme, the Upcycle Tire brush bag would pair well with the cards.

 

the-well-appointed-desks-gifts-to-give-ana-reinert-european-paper_04My “other mother” is an inspiring artist, I think she’d love the Fabriano Classic Blue Journal and thePalomino wood box 12-color set of colored pencils.

 

For my friend who’ll be travelling over the holidays, the Mudlark Artifact Luggage Tag for her suitcase, theEvernote A5 Moleskine and a Frank Lloyd Wright Robie House Acme Pen to document her travels.

 

I hope they won’t be too disappointed that I spoiled their holiday surprises here! Hopefully, it gave you some ideas.

*Meet the Writer : * When Ana Reinert is not designing greeting cards for
the world’s largest greeting card company she fancies herself an office
supply ninja, yarn hoarder, letter-writing secret agent and coffee junkie. She
also writes superfluously about all thing office-related for The
Well-Appointed Desk.*

How Do You Keep Up the Tempo? Enter, Efficiency Secrets from Hemingway & Fast Co.

21 Nov

 

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Written by Drake Baer for Fast Company

To Ernest Hemingway, writers are like wells: “The important thing is to have good water in the well,” he told the Paris Review, “and it is better to take a regular amount out than to pump the well dry and wait for it to refill.”

In this way, Hemingway coined the phrase leaving water in the well: instead of spending all your creative juices all at once, you leave a little bit of inspiration so that you can return to the same momentum that you left it with. Hemingway, whose habits of badass productivity we’ve talked about before, said to never stop writing without knowing how you are going to start again, to, in other words, never end a day’s work without knowing how you are going to start the next day.

But why does this help a workflow work so well?
Read the full article from Fast Company, right here »

The Well-Appointed Desk’s Ana Reinert Shares What’s on Her Wishlist

5 Nov

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For the most part, stationery and office supplies are not super expensive
and perfect for gift-giving. Unfortunately, non-paper geeks have no idea
what do buy for the paper-and-pen geek.

Here are a few things I think would love to find under the tree this
Christmas:

1. I love high-quality fountain pen inks. Both J. Herbin and Noodler’s make
great inks and have lots of colors to choose from. I particularly like the
icy aqua blue Noodler’s Navajo Turquoise Ink ($12.50)»

2. The amusing Cavallini Oops Eraser ($3.50) would make a perfect stocking
stuffer.

3. I’ve been on the lookout for a great dry highlighters and the Moleskine
Highlighter Pencil Set ($16.50) with its matte black casing and cool
carpenter-style shape make this an appealing option.

4. I’m always looking for good-quality stationery and the G. Lalo Medium
Tablet & EP Set ($23) in mint green looks like the luxury option. Wrapped
with a red bow, it’s holiday-ready. And those lazy post-Christmas days are a
great time to catch up on all my correspondence.

5. So many wonderful things have been said about the Apica Premium A6 CD
Notebook ($14.70) but I’ve yet to buy a pad. I think the plain paper pad
with the black cover would be a great way to try it out.

6. Anything by Midori is a welcome gift. Their products are high quality and
have great classic looks. The Midori B7 Spiralbound Envelope Notebook
($8.35) would be a great catch-all for receipts, stamps or travel ephemera.

7. Finally, in preparation for 2014, I will definitely need a new calendar for
my desk. The Cavallini Around The World Desk Calendar ($12.95) is just the
right sort of retro cool for me to dream of my next vacation while sitting
in the office.

Maybe I need to fill my own stocking this year?

*Meet the Writer : * When Ana Reinert is not designing greeting cards for
the world’s largest greeting card company she fancies herself an office
supply ninja, yarn hoarder, letter-writing secret agent and coffee junkie. She
also writes superfluously about all thing office-related for The
Well-Appointed Desk.*

Link Pack of Amazing Creative Business Resources, Vetted by SwissMiss

7 Oct

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We’re huge fans of the incredible Tina Roth Eisenberg, founder of Swiss-Miss, a brilliant design blog. One of our favorite columns from her is her end of the week wrap up, Friday Link Pack, where she shares resources that intrigue with abundant amounts of education, life hacks, and humor.

Here are our favorite links she’s shared from volumes of her Friday Link Packs :

1. Start Something : The Power of Side Projects
“Side projects are much more than simply hobbies, they are indicators of what you are capable of building. In an age where so many people are talkers and so few are doers, side projects can be the factor that sets you apart from the rest of the pack.”

2. How Effective People Handle Emails
“If you’re like most people, you feel overwhelmed and frustrated by the amount of email you receive. You would rather spend time on high-impact projects instead of digging through your inbox.”

3. The Noise of Stuff by Mikael Cho
“Cleaning out your closet, emptying your inbox, putting things where they “belong.”

4. Startup Toolkit: The Best Tools for Entrepreneurs
“Today, we’re gonna list all greatest tools for entrepreneurs and startups.”

5. What happens in one second on the internet – an amazing, alive infographic »

6. Ten Things I’ve Learned – Milton Glaser »
“Professionalism is not enough, or the good is the enemy of the great.”

 

Monday Notebook, Pen, & Ink Review Round-up

13 May

Notebook/Planner Reviews

Gourmet Pens: Review: @Exaclair G. Lalo Verge de France A5 Tablet – Blue

EdJelley: Clairefontaine Classic Notebook – Handwritten Review

These Beautiful Pens: More Paper Love: Le Typographe Writing Pad & Journal

Ink of me Fondly: Rhodia No.11 Notepad

Notebook Stories: Review: Piccadilly Softcover Notebook

Pens, Paper, Inks, Whatever: Clairefontaine Back to Basics 1951

Rants of the Archer: Review: Unlimited Notebook by Rhodia

Pen/Pencil Reviews

Comfortable Shoes Studio: Review: Palomino Blackwing Pencils

Well Appointed Desk: Ticonderoga Sensematic Mechanical Pencil  and Vintage Parker 21 Review

Ink of me Fondly: Lamy Raspberry Al-Star with J. Herbin Rouge Opera

Pencil Revolution: Review of Palomino Blackwing 602

Built from Ink and Tea: The Grand TWSBI Review – Part 2. A Review of the TWSBI Diamond 530 Fountain Pen

EdJelley: Lamy 2000 Fountain Pen – Handwritten Review

Pentorium: TWSBI VAC 700: Unboxing, First Impressions, and Writing Test! (Video) and TWSBI VAC 700 Long-term Review

On Fountain Pens: Review: Platinum Pocket Pen – from the 1970s!

Ink Reviews

EdJelley: J. Herbin – Terre de Feu – Handwritten Review

Ink of me Fondly: Tchaikovsky – De Atramentis Ink Review

Inkdependence: De Atramentis Moss Green and Noodler’s Gruene Cactus Eel

Inked Up & Happy: Requested review: Iroshizuku´s Ku-Jaku

FPGeeks: Inkcyclopedia: Cross Blue

Built from Ink & Tea: Review of Noodler’s Nightshade Ink

PenInkCillin: Private Reserve Invincible Aqua Blue

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Have a review you’d like included in the round-up? Post the link and title in the comments and we’ll add it here! Note that our comments are moderated, so if it doesn’t show immediately we’ll get to it soon.

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Link Love: Rhodia Drive & Derek Lam

19 Apr

We were so excited to see Derek Lam mention RHODIA as one of his travel essentials! Derek Lam is SUCH a fashion force and we love to see he uses Rhodia Notepads.

See the original article on Rhodia Drive here and discover more about Derek Lam here.

Derek Lam's Travel Essentials : Rhodia Drive

Derek Lam’s Travel Essentials : Rhodia Drive

Monday Notebook, Pen, & Ink Review Round-up

25 Mar

Notebook/Planner Reviews

Life Imitates Doodles: Review of Stillman & Birn’s Zeta Paper #Stillman&Birn

EdJelley: R by Rhodia No. 18 Lined Notepad – Handwritten Review

Plannerisms: Moleskine Action Planner

Pen/Pencil Reviews

FPGeeks: Edison Beaumont Pneumatic – The Awesome Review

Well Appointed Desk: TWSBI Mini Review…Finally

Ink of me Fondly: Lamy Safari & Al-Star Nib Size Comparison

Fine Points: Review: Pentel Slicci .25

Built from Ink and Tea: Review of the Hero 616 Jumbo Fountain Pen

Gourmet Pens: Review: Airmail 444 Eyedropper Fountain Pen – Flex

Fountain Pen Quest: Review: TWSBI Vac 700

From the Pen Cup: Icon: Lamy 2000 (Makrolon)

Pentorium: Fountain Pen Guide Series, Session 2: The Difference A Filling System Makes

Ink Reviews

EdJelley: Noodler’s Apache Sunset – Handwritten Review

Built From Ink and Tea: Review of Noodler’s Blue-black Ink

Fountain Pen Quest: Ink Notes: J. Herbin Cafe Des Iles

Pentorium: Ink Review: Noodler’s Bulletproof Black

 

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Have a review you’d like included in the round-up? Post the link and title in the comments and we’ll add it here! Note that our comments are moderated, so if it doesn’t show immediately we’ll get to it soon.

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Monday Notebook, Pen, & Ink Review Round-up

4 Mar

Notebook/Planner Reviews

Ink of me Fondly: Clairefontaine Collection 1951 Notebook Red Coral

FPGeeks: Whitelines A4 Side Wirebound Grid Notebook

EdJelley: Leuchtturm Jottbook Handwritten Review

Gourmet Pens: Whitelines Link A5 Notebook

Ethereal Voices: Rhodia Weekly Notebook Calendar

Pen/Pencil Reviews

Inktronics: U.S.S. Constitution Fountain Pen Review

From the Pen Cup: Inspired: Lamy AL-Star Ruby Red Limited Edition Fountain Pen

Pentorium: The Battle Between Japan’s Big 3

Fountain Pen Quest: Waterman Liaison Cobra

Palimpsest: Montblanc Meisterstück Classique Platinum Fountain Pen

Ink Reviews

Inkophile: Can You Match Pen Or Ink To Pantone Emerald?

EdJelley: J. Herbin 1670 Bleu Ocean Handwritten Review

Ink of me Fondly: Diamine Violet Ink

Built from Ink & Tea: Noodler’s Van Gogh Starry Night Ink

Misc. Reviews

Comfortable Shoes Studio: KUM Oval Pencil Shapener- 2 Hole

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Have a review you’d like included in the round-up? Post the link and title in the comments and we’ll add it here! Note that our comments are moderated, so if it doesn’t show immediately we’ll get to it soon.

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Pull Out Your Finest Pens, Stationery & More: It’s Letter Writing Month!

1 Feb

February is Letter Writing Month! Accept the Challenge at EuropeanPaper.com

We’re psyched to begin February with news of two fabulous letter writing challenges from around the blogosphere!

  • First up is the Month of Letters Challenge (LetterMo.com) started in 2011 by novelist Mary Kowal
  • FPGeeks also created a “mail a day” challenge called International Correspondence Writing Month (InCoWriMo, which is inspired by NaNoWriMo if the acronym doesn’t sound familiar).

Both challenge websites have forums and more information, but the premise is simple: mail one thing per day over the course of the month. (Technically, LetterMo’s challenge is for you to send 23 pieces of mail, one per every day the postal service runs, while InCoWriMo’s challenge is 28 pieces of mail, one per day.) Whether you send a postcard, 5-page handwritten letter, mail art, or package is completely up to you.

Resources:

Have you written a blog post about Letter Writing Month or have another resource for us to list? Add it in the comments below and we’ll add it up here!