I'm addicted to the lives of creative people. Specifically, to what inspires creative people, how they developed, how they work, their process, and how they make their way in a world that doesn't always seem geared towards supporting creative people. In looking over my list of what I've read this year, there are tons of books that I've read that have given glimpses into the lives of creative people--autobiographies like Boy and Going Solo by Roald Dahl, biographies like Hemingway and his World (I've probably read fifty-seven books about Hemingway), creative essays/memoirs like my friend David Yoo's new book The Choke Artist and Johnette (Concrete Blonde) Napolitano's book Rough Mix. Books like F. Paul Wilson's Aftershocks and Others, which is a book of short stories, but sandwiched between the stories are snapshot recaps of his career from year to year--fascinating encounters with both the production and business sides of creative endeavor (one of the things that have helped forge the bonds between Stephen King and his Constant Readers, I think, is that many of his books have similar material; the forwards, the afterwords, the story notes that give his loyal fanbase a peek behind the curtain, a chance to see the story behind the story). Musicians' biographies, artists' biographies (especially anyone that ever created for Mad Magazine, or painted science fiction book covers), writers' bios, anything. If you create, I want to read your story.
My friend Matthew Dow Smith is a creator--the type I'm insanely jealous of, because he is able to create just about anything in any medium, its seems. His newest creation is The October Girl, a brand new digital comic book from MonkeyBrain Comics, and you can--and should--get the first installment for the lofty price of .99 cents. And then you can catch some insight--for free!--into his process, his career, and the considerations one has to take into account to be a creative professional--in his eight part "Toys and Corners" series on his blog, starting HERE.
Buy the comic, read Matt's blog--it is my belief that by studying the lives of creative people as well as their creations you will find enrichment and inspiration for your own life. Give it a shot.