Author advises metro’s creative class

Austin Kleon

Talking and signing "Show Your Work" at 7:15 p.m. March 28. Free. Decatur Library, 215 Sycamore St., Decatur.

As home to a growing number of creative types — from artists to architects and designers to indie crafters — Atlanta would seem to offer a large potential audience for Austin Kleon.

Author of the new book "Show Your Work! 10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered," Kleon will make a Georgia Center for the Book appearance at Decatur Library March 28.

“In order to be found, you have to be findable,” says Kleon, who gave a keynote address at the recent South By Southwest Interactive Festival (a cousin of the music fest) in Austin, Texas, where he lives.

Published this month, “Show Your Work” (Workman, $11.95) is pitched as a “practical and inspirational manifesto” for artists or entrepreneurs seeking success in the digital age.

Filled with illustrations and advice, the quick-read from the author of “Steal Like an Artist” (in which he advised readers how to unlock their creativity) preaches 10 simple principles for getting discovered:

1. You don’t have to be a genius.

2. Think process, not product.

3. Share something small every day.

4. Open up your cabinet of curiosities.

5. Tell good stories.

6. Teach what you know.

7. Don’t turn into human spam.

8. Learn to take a punch.

9. Sell out.

10. Stick around.

Some may wonder what’s up with No. 9, a suggestion that artists of the pridefully starving variety might take as sacrilege.

“We all have to get over our ’starving artist’ romanticism and the idea that touching money inherently corrupts creativity,” Kleon writes. “Some of our most meaningful and most cherished cultural artifacts were made for money.”

Kleon’s examples: the Sistine Chapel (Michelangelo painted it “because the pope commissioned him”), “The Godfather” (Mario Puzo “was 45 years old, tired of being an artist, and owed $20,000 to assorted relatives, banks, bookmakers and shylocks”) and Beatles hits (Paul McCartney is quoted as saying that he and John Lennon “would sit down before a songwriting session and say, ‘Now let’s write a swimming pool’ ”).

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