You Are What You Read :: So What Am I?

by derek on November 20, 2008 · 31 comments

Last week, freelance writing extraordinaire Michael Kwan discussed the belief that much like the saying that you are what you eat, you are what you read.
Focused on advancing your career? You’re likely reading business books. Raising a family? You’re likely reading parenting books. Concerned about the state of the economy? You’re likely reading financial publications.
The important take-away here is that we are influenced by what we read, therefore we should strive to find a healthy balance in our reading materials. Unfortunately, many of us are limited in the amount of time that we can devote to reading.
As Michael concluded his post, he asked whether or not people still read for pleasure or if people only read material directly related to their work or education. As I commented on the post, I do still read for pleasure – although much of that reading is now done online.
However, after a recent order arrived from Amazon, plus a trip to the local library the other day, I have found myself with a stack of reading material on my desk. I thought it might be interesting to share with you the books that are on my desk right now. Whether or not this gives you an insight into who (or what) I am, I will leave you to decide.

Artie Lange – Too Fat to Fish

On my morning commute, often times I am listening to The Howard Stern Show on Sirius satellite radio. For those that aren’t familiar with the show, Artie Lange is the side-kick on the show and also has a successful stand-up comedy career.
Being a fan of the show, I’ve heard numerous stories from Artie that have had me in tears with laughter. Naturally, I had to pick up a copy of his book when it came out to see what other kind of bizarre stories he had to share.

Blog Blazers

While I am intimately familiar with one chapter in this book – the one about me – I am extremely interested in what the other 39 bloggers have to share as well.
One look at the lineup of bloggers that have been included in this book and you can see why this would be on my reading list even if I had not received a copy. You still have time to enter to win a copy of Blog Blazers!
With this book, I can clearly see that Michael’s belief that you are what you read has some merit. Obviously I am a blogger, whether I can be considered a “top” blogger is not for me to decide, but I am a blogger reading about blogging.

Meatball Sundae: Is Your Marketing out of Sync?

One of the bloggers featured in the book Blog Blazers is none other than Seth Godin. After reading Seth’s chapter in Blog Blazers, I was interested in reading one of the books that he has authored.
Recently, Shoemoney had been talking about the book the dip and I found myself at the library looking for this book. Unfortunately it was not on the shelves, but they did have Meatball Sundae so I grabbed it.

The Secret

Anyone that is familiar with the law of attraction has likely heard of this book. While I have read a fair amount about it, I have yet to read the book most often referenced when discussing the law of attraction.
Do I believe in the law of attraction? Not really, but I think that I need to read more to fully understand the message before I can say for sure. There have been times that I thought there was some validity to the law of attraction, however I also question whether that is just a convenient explanation for the results of my actions.

WTF?: How to Survive 101 of Life’s Worst F*#!-ing Situations

A couple of weeks ago, I was contacted by someone working with this book that thought it might of interest to my community over at TMP. When the review copy arrived, my wife grabbed it and could not put it down.
Whether it be how to handle the times when you can’t pull down your pants to crap because someone peed on the floor (#12) or your computer crashes and you lose the big presentation (#33), this book is guaranteed to have you laughing.

Click Here to Order: Stories of the World’s Most Successful Internet Marketing Entrepreneurs

Joel Comm may be well known for his advice related to Google AdSense, but he has a long history with internet marketing.
In this book, Joel takes us through the “underground” history surrounding some of the most successful internet marketers. While this isn’t a step-by-step guide to replicate the success that these people have had, it does offer insight into what these people did to achieve their goals.
As you can see, my reading list has a couple of books focused on blogging and internet marketing – which is certainly inline with the belief that you are what you read. However, I also have a couple of books on my reading list that are of a broader, or different, demographic.
I’d be interested to hear what is on your current reading list – are you what you read?

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{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Nicole Price November 21, 2008 at 1:14 am

That is some list there. I am reading two books now and find both extremely interesting.
1. Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert, and
2. The trouble with Islam today by Irshad Manji.
Nicole Prices last blog post..The Best Recipe Sites


derek November 24, 2008 at 6:07 pm

Stumbling on Happiness sounds like an extremely interesting read and seems like it would blend nicely with things that have been on my mind for quite some time now.
Thanks for sharing your reading list.


Kelvin Kao November 21, 2008 at 3:45 am

Interesting. I’ve actually just started reading The Secret. Now I’m only on page 2. I don’t believe in this law of attraction thing, but I’m going to read the book and see what I think about it.
Also, if you are what you read, then… if you read nothing, then you are nothing?


Nicole Price November 21, 2008 at 4:31 am

After having read the book, seen the movie and visited a number of sites propagating the law of attraction, I have come to the conclusion that it is just the old fashioned thing that we used to call prayer. I suppose that it is unfashionable now a days to say one prays and so all these razzamatazz around it.
I hope that this finds some contrary views here!
Nicole Prices last blog post..The Best Recipe Sites


derek November 24, 2008 at 6:10 pm

Whether you want to call it the Law of Attraction or even praying, I believe it is all just a description for putting yourself in the proper mental position to take the actions necessary to reach your goals.


Kelvin Kao November 24, 2008 at 6:10 pm

I haven’t read the book yet, but I’ve read some people’s blog posts about the law of attraction.
My counter-argument for it is usually: All men think about sex all day. Not all men are getting laid. Tada!!
And then they will say, no no no. You can’t just think about it. Your actions have to be aligned with the goal too.
Okay, fine, but to sum that up: “Want something really bad and work really hard for it”. I don’t really need to be told that.
Let’s see if I think any differently after reading the book.
Kelvin Kaos last blog post..Cool Links to Check Out (11/17/2008 edition)


Kelvin Kao November 24, 2008 at 6:12 pm

Oh wow, Derek, our comments are only 25 seconds apart!
Kelvin Kaos last blog post..Cool Links to Check Out (11/17/2008 edition)


derek November 24, 2008 at 6:29 pm

Lol, funny that our timing was so close!
And I love your example re: men thinking about sex, that is hilarious!
We both seem to be on the same page with our thoughts of The Secret prior to reading the book. It will be interesting to see if there is anything there to make us think differently.

Jerry@air beds November 29, 2008 at 10:00 pm

If thats true, I suppose I am nothing. Or maybe a small selection of paragraphs here and there flung into nothing…creepy. 😛


Urban Dweller November 21, 2008 at 12:17 pm

I’m reading the Secrets of the Millionaire Mind and Celestine Prophecy. The Secret, its a bit cheesy. The law of attraction has its merits in that if you think positively and what not you will attract positive people and actions to you. It’s like mind over matter in a way I guess.
Urban Dwellers last blog post..Vancity Buzz Christmas Giveaway: DIPT


derek November 24, 2008 at 6:15 pm

Appreciate your feedback, as well as you sharing the books that on your reading list. Is the Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T. Harv Eker? Also, is it Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth or Think Rich to Get Rich?


Michael Kwan November 21, 2008 at 2:03 pm

WTF sounds like an interesting read. I’ll have to check that out.
Seeing how I’m the one who said, “You are what you read,” it’s only fair if I were to provide my current reading list as well. I’ll try to put up a blog post over the weekend.
Michael Kwans last blog post..NFL Week 12 Predictions


derek November 24, 2008 at 6:16 pm

I’d be interested to hear what you think of WTF if you do check it out, I’ve found it to be pretty funny reading.
Thanks for sharing your reading list on your blog!


student loans November 22, 2008 at 12:02 pm

i read the secret right now, its great and valuable book
read your post about WTF? make me want to buy this book
student loanss last blog post..Is it possible to transfer student loans to a different school?


Erik Johansen November 23, 2008 at 2:26 am

Yeah, you are what you read is somehow true; probably because the books that we read reflects our personality and our intellect. But of course, like food, we sometime try out other “cuisine” or sometimes just because we need to read it (temporary state of mind, work related, reference, etc)


derek November 24, 2008 at 6:19 pm

Absolutely. However, like with your food analogy, some people do not like to stray outside of their own area of comfort to try new things – which is fine, but does define who we are.
Personally, I like to try – and read – new things and that is why I am really enjoying the fact that people are sharing their reading material here.


Internet Strategist November 24, 2008 at 2:30 pm

You asked “What Am I” based on what you read? A leader among bloggers…a role model for good Fathership…a serious writer…fun to read…
What do I read regularly?
I would be reading but he hasn’t been posting. Where or where did Andy go. I hope he’ll come back some day.
Keep up the good work, Derek. Drop me an email or twitter me please. I’d like to reconnect with you.


derek November 24, 2008 at 6:26 pm

First, thank you for the opening comments. It is hard for me to see myself as those things but I do appreciate you sharing that.
You’ve listed some great blogs there, outside of mine, and are on my regular list of reads too. I’ve not spoken with Marty from AimClearBlog in some time but he has taught me many things.
Thanks again and I’d be happy to connect via email or twitter.


Nick@romandock dot com November 25, 2008 at 12:37 am

I agree with that analysis of you based on your current reading list…also, aside from “The Secret” which I am decidedly undecided about reading, and Artie Lange because I’ve never heard of him or his book, I think I would like to read pretty much all of the books on your reading list.
Personally, I have a couple of books I’ve thought about reading but I just don’t have the time right now so I just stick to the blogs in my RSS feed.
Nicks last blog post..Code of Federal Regulations


Jessica W November 25, 2008 at 4:20 am

That is interesting list indeed. I haven’t read any of those books, but i am sure i will read the one from Seth Godin.
Jessica Ws last blog post..Why is Professional Web Design so Important


Neil @ Free Wii November 25, 2008 at 5:54 am

I would probably be a serial killer or a detective as the only books I read seem to be crime thrillers and detective stories.
Great article and thanks for the insight into your reading habits


Internet Strategist November 25, 2008 at 2:56 pm

I forgot to mention a couple of major blogs I read regularly and came back specifically to share two important posts I just read at One is that a good deed he did brought him a $5000 donation that he donated to feed the hungry. He is offering a link on his popular blog to anyone who donates just one meal – only $3.29 – to the same charity.
He is also offering a contest prize of $6,000 – $5000 of it to be given to your favorite charity and $1000 to spend on yourself – for trying and writing about (a tiny url service). Both are featured on his blog right now.
I also failed to mention ProBlogger – another exceptional blog I read every day and highly recommend.
I know you have readers who aspire to being great bloggers or who have blogs that could really benefit from links from and JohnChow,com as well as the ones you share with them.


Neil@PS3 November 27, 2008 at 2:46 am

Thanks for the insight into your reading list. It made me realise that I probably don’t read much diverse books and only seem to read the same things


Nicole Price November 28, 2008 at 4:03 am

I have ordered for WTF! I am sure that it will be as good as you sound about it. I just wanted to share with you about another very good book that I have just finished reading. Prisoners of our thoughts – by Alex Pattakos.
This has truly left a great impression on me.
Nicole Prices last blog post..The Best Recipe Sites


law of attraction February 25, 2009 at 4:02 am

This many thing do help to build them self. I fell your work to be regard as top. Some great comments are thanking you for some good linkings. and am too….
I have set back my mine through LOA – the secret and your shows some similar points. thnx… I look forward at you for same things…


law of attraction March 16, 2009 at 4:44 am

I had created most out of law of attraction, but with the time every thing change and I too… Today “I am becoming a millionaire” or “I am in the process of becoming a millionaire.” but its credit is not me… but my way to think… and my way of thinking is changed with simple following the Law of attraction. Now its important for me to be grateful for all that you have and all that you are attracting into your life.


Jake@Teen Fiction Centre July 9, 2011 at 3:34 am

WTF looks like a pretty fun read, the thing about not knowing what to do when someone’s peed on the floor cracked me up!
This is the first time I’ve visited your blog, but it won’t be the last!
Jake, Teen Fiction Centre


Teen Fiction Centre July 9, 2011 at 3:38 am

I don’t know what happened with the name in that last comment? Weird!


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