Read A Whack on the Side of the Head: How You Can Be More Creative by Roger Von Oech Online


This is the 25th anniversary edition of the creativity classic by Dr. Roger von Oech. Over the years, A WHACK ON THE SIDE OF THE HEAD has been praised by business people, educators, scientists, homemakers, artists, youth leaders, and many more. The book has been stimulating creativity in millions of readers, translated into eleven languages, and used in seminars around thThis is the 25th anniversary edition of the creativity classic by Dr. Roger von Oech. Over the years, A WHACK ON THE SIDE OF THE HEAD has been praised by business people, educators, scientists, homemakers, artists, youth leaders, and many more. The book has been stimulating creativity in millions of readers, translated into eleven languages, and used in seminars around the world. Now Roger von Oech's fully illustrated and updated volume is filled with even more provocative puzzles, anecdotes, exercises, metaphors, cartoons, questions, quotations, stories, and tips designed to systematically break through your mental blocks and unlock your mind for creative thinking. This new edition will attract an entire new generation of readers with updated and mind-stretching material....

Title : A Whack on the Side of the Head: How You Can Be More Creative
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780446404662
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 256 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

A Whack on the Side of the Head: How You Can Be More Creative Reviews

  • Mary
    2019-06-01 07:53

    This is a book to always come back to. When I am in a slump and not feeling "it" I turn to Roger Von Oech. A mentor 16 years ago highly recommended this book. It is one of the well worn books on my shelf!

  • Tatjana
    2019-05-29 03:57

    I read this book in a couple of hours.It's an older book that has been on my shelves for an age. Maybe two ages. It's the 1983 version and lacks the slick, over-designed look of today's books. It has comments by people relevant at the time. In fact, it was from a time when our industries were still relevant. Before we started truly believing that Americans are no longer innovative industrialists.This book made it clear to me what thinking has made it so.This book also made it clear how I've participated in the way of thinking that prohibits true innovation.It's a marvel. Really. Everyone needs to pick up a copy of this book and read it. There's nothing startlingly new in it. Even the way it's illustrated is a little old school and kitschy. It says everything you need to know succinctly without dragging on and on. It keeps it simple. You will want to start every meeting with puzzles after reading this book. It will make you consider your black and white thinking, even if you think you don't have any. You will go for a walk/run/swim/bike ride with your eyes wide open, excitement filling your brain like you've suddenly woken up after a really long nap. You will feel ready to DO not just to study.You will close your laptop and go make something.You will.Seriously. Read. This. Book.

  • Steven Cole
    2019-05-29 01:56

    I read this because Mark Rosewater (of Magic the Gathering fame) recommended it in a number of his podcasts. It's sort of a self-help book for people who want to be more creative. Or a study in the whys and wherefores of creativity. And if you're truly in a position where constantly reinventing your approach to become essentially institutionally (or even industrially) creative, this book has a lot of great approaches.For the rest of us... It's nice to look back on when we're stumped about stuff, I suppose... But I'm not certain I take anything away from it directly. Maybe the next time I'm stumped on something it'll help, but in all honesty, it's been quite a while since I've been that kind of stumped. Perhaps rather than "more creative", what I truly desire in my own projects is "more artistry", which this book doesn't really address.Anyway: it's got some nifty thoughts. It'll sit in the back of my mind for a while, and I probably won't trade the book away, so that I can come back to it in the future. It spoke truth, not shyster-ism, to me.3 of 5 stars.

  • Karen Burton
    2019-06-02 03:08

    Of all the "how to" books I've read, this is the one that really stuck with me. I often think of the simple principles so vividly presented in this book, and employ them at every opportunity. Stuck in a rut? Drive a different way to work, take a different set of stairs, shop the grocery store in the opposite direction of the way you normally go. Most memorable is the exercise in looking at common, every day experiences in a new way. For example, a revolving door as a merry go round. I read this book more than 20 years ago, but still smile every time I enter the "merry go round" at the office. Sometimes we just need a "whack on the side of the head".

  • Kathleen
    2019-06-02 00:07

    This was honestly an awesome book I read after it was given to me from a work colleague. It helps you look at things differently, problem solve differently, etc. I think this would be a great tool for anyone in any field of work- from real estate, to legal work, to being a stay at home mom. It's an easy read and one that can be read quickly-

  • Judy
    2019-05-22 07:52

    This is a wonderful book for anyone - teachers, office workers, students, salesmen - anyone can get something helpful out of spending a little time with this book. It gives you methods for looking at problems from outside the box - WAY outside the box in some cases! But it can help you break out of the, "we've always done it this way..." solutions to problems!

  • Eric Maziade
    2019-06-08 01:54

    Loved that one. I bought a few extra copies and gave to a few of my most creative friends. This book gives a few tricks to unlock creative potential, as well as guidelines on how and when to use your creativity.

  • Michael
    2019-05-29 06:42

    Recommended for everyone. If God is the Creator and we're made in His image, then to be creative is to be more like God. This book is a fun and practical guide to awakening and encouraging your creative side.

  • Stacey
    2019-06-10 03:06

    Lots of tips and strategies for jump-starting your students' creativity.

  • Carl King
    2019-05-28 02:41

    This is a classic. I don't know what else to say, but definitely read this if you intend to have a creative career.

  • Cristobal
    2019-06-12 23:50

    An excellent book filled with practical exercises on how to unleash creative thinking. It's a book that merits more than one thoughtful reading.

  • Don Gubler
    2019-05-19 23:41

    Lots of good ideas on how to be creative and improve your creative thinking.

  • Todd
    2019-06-19 02:59

    This book was included in my book: The 100 Best Business Books of All Time.

  • Steve
    2019-06-14 04:04

    I re-read it every few years. It makes me feel centered and is a wellspring of great ideas.

  • Rhys Leclair
    2019-05-27 06:49

    Very approachable in that you can basically open to any chapter and jump right in. Also check out the "Creative Whack Pack" cards, great for brainstorming.

  • Tom Bentley
    2019-06-17 02:02

    I read a fair amount of posts on LinkedIn, Medium and other sources on productivity and creative thinking (which is probably why I don't get around to being productive). So, when I see that this book, written 35 years ago, espouses the same themes of listening to your unconscious, bending the rules, being willing to be foolish, and so many other axioms of accessing your creative self, I understand that these contemporary scribes have been drawing on the original gangster of innovative thinking, A Whack on the Side of the Head.The prevailing "fail faster, fail often" ethos that's got the throat of Silicon Valley has its primordial soup here too. I'm really to be disappointed when I find out that Mark Twain stole all of his lines from Pliny the Elder. Anyway, lots of good exercises in perspective and challenging the status quo here. And the illustrations have a combination of the creepy and the amusing you can't buy now. Get whacked!

  • Robin
    2019-05-21 06:43

    It's a quick read, and probably a useful refresher. I didn't enjoy it much, mostly because I'm currently experiencing a creative block and reading this book just made me uncomfortable. I think that's good and healthy, hence the three stars, but it just felt like forcing myself to eat my vegetables at the moment. Definitely dogeared a few pages as reminders to myself though, and hopefully I can get out of my rut soon.

  • Ram
    2019-06-14 04:10

    A nice entertaining book. You get to learn a lot of interesting facts from history that the author has collated to explain the different scenarios in the book. Overall, a good book and a quick read too!

  • Frank
    2019-06-12 01:45

    평이 좋아서 읽었는데 별로였다. 헤라클레이토스 명언집을 구해서 읽어봐야겠다는 정도.

  • Mary Kelly
    2019-06-12 06:54

    Fun, fast and innovative. I love the drawings and the ideas are pretty good too. I highly recommend it.

  • Oleg Paralyush
    2019-06-01 06:48

    It contains actionable advises nearly on each page. Read it and go create.

  • Susan
    2019-06-07 02:01

    Rather disappointing. I am not sure why people still recommend this book. Most of the information is commonplace now. Dated.

  • Hardy Bazyani
    2019-06-15 06:41

    a very easy read..

  • Kathleen day
    2019-06-01 04:53

    Creativity Inspirational to help anyone realize their mind is just as capable as the greatest in history you just need to believe it too! :)

  • Viraj
    2019-06-07 00:50

    The book has some good ideas… Directly from the book (my comments in brackets): The page numbers were not noted. Pg. Quoted Alber Szent – Gyorgy (Nobel): Discovery consists of looking at the same thing as everyone else and thinking something different. Mental locks: - The right answer That’s not logical Follow the rules Be practicalPlay is frivolous That’s not my area Avoid ambiguity Don’t be foolishTo err is wrong I’m not creative We need the ability to unlearn what we know The danger of habits is that a person can become a prisoner of familiarity Children enter school as question marks & leave as periods. – Neil Postman. Life is ambiguous – there are many right answers – all depending on what you are looking for. But if you think there is only one right answer, then you will stop looking as soon as you find one. Most people don’t like problems. When they encounter them, they usually react by taking the first way out they can find – even if they solve a wrong problem… Nothing is more dangerous than an idea when it’s the only one you have. – Emile Charlie. It is easier to make good decisions if one has a variety of ideas from which to choose. The best way to put a good idea is to get a lot of ideas. Train yourself to ask questions: What are the results, answers, meanings? Inventor says: “that’s one way to do it; but it doesn’t seem to be an optimum solution.” Different words bring in different assumptions and lead your thinking in different directions. The second assault on the same problem should come from a totally different direction. – Tom Hirshfield. Truth is all around you, what matters is where you place your focus. SoA and hard thinking. There are two kinds of people in the world. Those who divide everything into two groups and those who don’t. Go by your intuition / hutches. Though they have no apparent logical reason. Metaphors are quite useful in helping you get a different slant on a problem. They are also effective in making complex ideas easier to understand. Make a metaphor for a problem you are currently dealing with or a concept you are developing. Simply compare it to something else and see what similarities exist. Highlight your idea with the metaphor. See how far you can extend the comparison. The most fertile metaphrases are those in which there is some action taking place. Every rule here can be challenged; except this one. To solve a complex situation, start with “what rules can we break?”… We assimilate so many rules that they become blind assumptions. Then it is difficult to be innovative. If you don’t ask “why this?” often enough, somebody will ask “why you?” Students / children are usually better rewarded for regurgitating information than for playing with ideas and thinking originally. As a consequence, people feel more comfortable following the rules than challenging them. We make rules based on reasons that make a lot of sense. We follow the rules. Time passes and things change. The original reasons for the generation of these rules may no longer exist but because the rules are still in place, we continue to follow them. i.e. keyboard key configuration. Avoid falling in love with ideas / type / style. If you don’t, you will want to use it everywhere – even where it’s inappropriate. The comedy loosens up thinking and establishes an environment in which people can be creative. There is a close relationship between the “haha” of humor and the “aha” of discovery. The fun is contagious and everybody works harder to get a piece of it. Enthusiasmos = The God is within you. Enthusiastic people seem to have access to a spirit which serves as their source of inspiration. In today’s world people know more and more about less and less. Peeping in other disciplines might solve tricky problems in another. A lot of business schools analyze things to death and never get around to acting. The hardest thing to do is to draw the first line / begin. Most advances in science come when a person changes fields. – Peter Borden. Anyone can look for fashion in a boutique or history in a museum. The creative person looks for history in a hardware store and fashion in an airport. Its one thing to be open to new ideas. Its quite another to go on the offensive and actively seek them out. Thomas Edison: Make it a point to keep on the outlook for novel and interesting ideas that others have used successfully. Your idea has to be original only in its adaptation to the problem you are currently working on. Read fiction: It relaxes; you play, and gives you ideas. When you capture an idea, be sure to write it down. Posing a problem in an ambiguous way would give more freedom to the imaginations of the people who were working on the problem. Beyond the Blue horizon lies a rising sun.

  • Charles
    2019-05-21 02:05

    My first exposure to this book was in a series of faculty development seminars. Reading through the book and then carrying out discussions and role-playing made what can often be a boring chore something to look forward too.Although some of the references, specifically those regarding computers, are very dated, the overall concepts are timeless. Valuable inspiration does not appear on a timetable, daydreaming and letting your mind wander are generally the best ways to capture the insights that lead to new ideas, better products and more efficient ways of doing things.Of course, to the modern spreadsheet reading, drive out the last pennies of unnecessary cost mindset, such actions are seen as “a waste of time” and a danger to the profit margins. That is unfortunate and in general wrong. History is replete with instances, some of which are mentioned in this book, of great and revolutionary ideas being spawned from a silly thought or looking at something and thinking about it in a different way.Change was fast when this book was written and it is even faster now. Companies that were great a decade ago where the decision makers were secure in their business models and lacked creative vision are now the fodder for business books about what can go wrong. Nearly thirty-five years after it was first published, this book can still serve as a guide to keep your organization out of that particular pit.

  • Frank Calberg
    2019-06-05 23:43

    At the start of the book, at location 150, I read a story about Picasso who, one day, went outside his house and found an old bicycle. He looked at it for a bit and took off first the seat and then the handle bars. Then he welded them together to create the head of a bull. This example illustrates the creative mind’s power to transform one thing into another. By changing perspective and playing with our knowledge, we can make the ordinary extraordinary. In this lies the key of discovery: Looking at the same thing as everyone else and seeing something different. In environments where focus on specialization, standardization, and efficiency is driven to great lengths in several industries and companies, the need for creative thinking is, in order to generate more value for more people, very large.At location 200, the author mentions some creative locks that we need to unlock to become more creative. Among examples are “That’s not my area” and “I’m not creative”. The danger of habits and routines are, the author mentions, that people get stuck in their traditional ways of doing things – whether it is the way people cook a meal or manage a project. To create more value for more people, we need to continuously break out, think and try out something new. For more reasons on why people resist change, see, for example, way of practicing creative thinking is to challenge your own traditional ways of doing things by doing something else. For example, if you use to always sit at one side of the table when eating breakfast or dinner, try sitting at the other side of the table. Also, on social media, try following people from very different disciplines than the ones you are good at. That’ll open your eyes to new way of thinking and doing. Often, the best ideas come from cutting across boundaries and looking into other fields for new ideas, the author writes at location 1360.Towards the end of the book, from location 2275, the author mentions that people who are successful in the creative process are able to these 4 roles: Explorer, artist, judge, warrior. The explorer is your role for searching for new information and resources. The artist is your role for turning these resources into new ideas. The judge is your role for evaluating the merits of an idea and deciding what to do with it. The warrior is the role for carrying your idea into action.

  • Sujata Sahni
    2019-05-28 03:49

    Every act of creation is first an act of destruction. A whack on the side of the head can dislodge assumptions that keep us thinking more of the same. The cosmos speaks in patterns and staying on routine thought paths enables us to do many things that we need to do without having to think about them. So what do we do when we need to be creative? How do we get rid of mental locks, like, that's not logical, the right answer, follow the rules, be practical, play is frivolous, avoid ambiguity, to err is wrong and I am not creative. We need the ability to unlearn what we know. Sometimes to think something different our own attitudes can get in the way. Usually, once a rule gets in place, it's very difficult to eliminate it even though the original reason for it's generation has disappeared. Creative thinking involves not only generating new ideas but also escaping from obsolete ones as well. Every rule here can be challenged except this one! Creative thinking may simply mean the realization that there is no particular virtue in doing things the way they have always been done. The amount a person uses her imagination is inversely proportional to the amount of punishment she will receive for using it. Every child is an artist, the problem is to remain an artist after growing up. Necessity may be the mother of invention but play is certainly the father. Limits are an artists best friend. Learn to pause or nothing worthwhile will catch up to you. Entertain Paradoxes, the ability to entertain two different often contradictory notions at the same time.

  • Anuj Mag
    2019-06-05 01:03

    I had read the title of this book couple of years back and didnt feel motivated to read this because it said "How you can be more creative". In general, i dont have much liking for the "How to" type books as they tend to be too preachy and one tends to forget the contents as soon as the last page is over. I picked this up recently upon seeing the reviews and i must mention that this is quite well researched book full of stories and anecdotes and explores in-depth the causes of why people dont tend to be less creative basically addressing the Roadblocks. Its been an eye opener in various aspects and some points really made me question my personal style of creativity. Got to blog some of the learnings and associations- Will do so more in coming time. Recommend to read this if you havent done so already or re-read it if you did it quite a while back.

  • Jenny GB
    2019-06-04 08:09

    A nice, quick read that talks about what blocks us all from being creative and gives you some ideas of what to do about it. I wouldn't say anything in this book is revolutionary, but it is succinctly stated with some fun illustrations to go along with the words. It talks a lot about embracing risk, change, and ambiguity so that you can experience new things and try new ideas. It also talks about thinking of yourself as creative and trying to change your thinking so that you look at things from different angles and don't necessarily try for just one answer to a problem. It's all well said and good food for thought if anyone is feeling stuck in monotony. I didn't really do the exercises or the test at the end because I was trying to wade through a huge pile of books, but I'm sure doing those would make the book even more engaging and applicable.