How to be a More Productive Procrastinator. Plus: Self-Lacing Shoes, Gigantic Potholes and When it’s OK to Leave Work Fourteen Percent Early


Welcome to November, folks.

For me the past month has been extraordinary: my first book, ‘The Secret Lives of Colour’, was published in the UK. Many people have asked what it is like seeing it in the shops and the truth is that it feels surreal. For my passion for colour to make it out of a Word file on my laptop and into physical form in bookshops and — even more exiting — on people’s shelves is something that will take some getting used to.

As ever, huge thanks to James Edgar, the very talented designer of the book responsible for the gorgeous covers and the look of every page in between, and for my editor and everyone else involved with team colour at John Murray. I am thrilled to announce that I will be continuing to work with them on my next book, which I have now begun working on in earnest.

For more bookish info, including details of talks and events, please visit the books tab above.

Below are the stories that caught my eye this month. (Not included: the thousands of pieces I have read and Samantha Bee clips I have watched — OK, maybe just this one — on the Presidential election.)

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An unusual way of protesting about outsized potholes: bathe in them

Infrared photographs of Vermont’s natural beauty

In South Korea: a pitched battle between feminism and misogyny

You can now buy self-lacing shoes. (This would have saved five-year-old me a lot of tears)

An astonishing article, and video, about women and rights — particularly the right to vote — in Saudi Arabia

A sculpture of a giant octopus dragging a ferry down to the depths commemorates a tragedy that never happened

De Beers is now sourcing diamonds from the bottom of the sea

Icelandic women leave work 14% early to protest the 14% pay gap

How to make your procrastination habits more productive

China’s Kickstarter copycats

“No, not you,” the little girl said, “only white people can play.” A father on responding to racism against his son

Imagine if New York’s streets were named after the women who had lived, worked, preached and died on them

How wanting to believe the world is a fair place can lead you into victim-blaming

The far-right’s new racist slang uses tech company names

A brilliant piece by Jonathan Jones on the 17th-century female artist who painted her suffering for all to see

Reviews of ‘The Secret Lives of Colour‘ are in from The Economist, the FT and The Lady and extracts have appeared in Elle Decoration, the Observer, The Simple Things, and the Telegraph. (My dad was particularly delighted by that last one.)

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