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          10 stories we've enjoyed this week      

Image by Justine Allenette Ross - Buy Her Work
Hi All, 

There was something in the air this week. Did you feel it too? Something I hadn't felt for such a long time. It felt like optimism. And it felt so good. Long may it continue. 

Inspiration and thanks this week go to Genius Steals, Julian ColeNihal ArthanyakeBen Dietz and Jason Kottke

Have an absolutely wonderful bank holiday weekend and I hope you all get the table reservations you wish for.

Hugh
The Short Story
A Brief History of Stuff: Bath Toys
(25 min listen)

Post-Pandemic New Yorker Covers
(Twitter thread) 


The Fascinating Factors That Have Shaped Book Lengths For Centuries
(10 min read)

A Long List of Brilliant Free Strategy Tools
(Resource)

Why You Can't Write Great Rock and Roll in Your Fifties
(1 min read)

How the World's Most Famous Companies Chose Their Name
(1 min read)


The Importance of Spotting Organisational Anti-patterns
(4 min read)

How the Clash Embraced New York’s Hip Hop Scene in 1980
(2 min watch)

Artists Fill The Void Left By California's Dying Salton Sea
(5 min watch)

52 Comfort Films to Watch Again and Again 
(List)
Illustrated cover of The New Yorker featuring a black family sitting down to dinner after the pandemic. There is an empty chair.

How can we help you?

Storythings is a strategy and content company based in Brighton and London. We'd love to help you with some creative and bold ideas.

Here's 3 reasons to get in touch

1. You want to talk to us about content production: podcasts, videos, animations, illustrations, editorial. 

2. You want to talk to us about content strategy or format development.

3. You want to create a brand or an identity that makes it easier to communicate your message.


We do other things too. We're very friendly and always enjoy meeting people, so get in touch

 
The Full Story
A Brief History of Stuff: Bath Toys
In the first episode of this podcast we made with the Science Museum Nihal Arthanayake hears the story of what happened when 30,000 bath toys washed overboard during a storm in 1992 and how these cute plastic critters helped scientists uncover the mysteries behind ocean currents. Listen and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts. 
(25 min listen)

Post-Pandemic New Yorker Covers
Tomer Hanuka asked his illustration students at the School of Visual Arts to come up with a post-pandemic cover for The New Yorker. The results are outstanding. Some of these really moved me. 
(Twitter thread) 

The Fascinating Factors That Have Shaped Book Lengths For Centuries
This is a great read on the history of book lengths looking at the economics and physical forces that have determined how many words a novel should be. It features some fascinating stories such as how those wireframe book stands popular in supermarkets in the 80s we influential on book lengths, why digital books should cost as much paper books and what the future holds for book lengths. 
(10 min read)

A Long List of Brilliant Free Strategy Tools
I stumbled across this via the Genius Steals newsletter and it's an absolute gift. Compiled by Julian Cole from Planning Dirty this Google doc features over 50 tools to make your job a hell of a lot easier. There are research tools, project management tools, tools for creative inspiration and more. Bookmark it now. 

(Resource)

Why You Can't Write Great Rock and Roll in Your Fifties

A superb short piece on the problem of writing when you get older. 
(1 min read)

How the World's Most Famous Companies Chose Their Name
Choosing a name for your company is hard. Really hard. So if you're ever looking for inspiration when naming a company or project check out this huge list of company name etymologies.  
(1 min read)

The Importance of Spotting Organisational Anti-patterns
The term 'anti-pattern' was coined in 1995 by the programmer Andrew Koenig, who said, “An anti-pattern is just like a pattern, except that instead of a solution it gives something that looks superficially like a solution but isn't one.” This 'Why is This Interesting' post looks at how you can use the idea, originally a reference to code, for thinking about your organisation.  
(4 min read) 

How the Clash Embraced New York’s Hip Hop Scene in 1980
Six months before Blondie's Rapture stormed the charts The Clash were getting heavy rotation on New York hip hop radio station WBLS. In this short video Joe Strummer talks about how Mick Jones introduced the band to the New York hip hop scene that inspired their song The Mangificent Seven.
(2 min watch)

Artists Fill The Void Left By California's Dying Salton Sea
When travel becomes a thing again I may have to pay a visit to the Salton Sea. It formed when a dam broke and it stayed alive with agricultural water runoff. Today, its water supply has dried up, and the sea is dying but the area has a new life as a haven for artists in the middle of the desert.
(5 min watch)


52 Comfort Films to Watch Again and Again
This has saved me spending the bank holiday weekend scrolling and scrolling through Netflix. 
(List)
We hope you've enjoyed this week's newsletter. I'm sure some of your friends would love to read it. Sharing it would be really appreciated. If you've received this from a friend you can subscribe here and get it direct to your inbox every Friday.

Thanks for reading and see you all next week,

Hugh, Matt, Anjali and the team at Storythings
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