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The Best Blog Posts of 2013

For the past couple of years I've rounded up my favourite blog posts of the year by way of my own small celebration of the great thinking and writing that I've been fortunate to come across in 2013. So, in no particular order, here are my ten favourite blog posts of the past year:

Matt Locke is brilliant on patterns of attention and storytelling – he did an excellent Firestarters talk last year on the subject. More recently he did great talk for Radio 4 on Empires of Attention.

Such great advice in Ian Fitzpatrick's Five Provocations for planners. I particularly liked his point about how we often find ourselves in the business of "creating safe, repeatable, componentized experiences designed largely to bathe people in brand juice", in the same way that children's playgrounds are "adult constructs of idealized child play".

April's Google Firestarter event on agency innovation saw some brilliant provocations (all worth checking out), but Antony Mayfield's take was brilliantly forthright.

I was really touched by Phil Adams' wonderfully written and powerful reflection on grief and family life

Murat Mutlu wrote a telling piece that was shared widely on the struggle of agencies to hire the best young talent. 

I could have included a number of posts from Martin Weigel in this list. This year his writing has continued to be erudite, well-argued, and most often laced with a healthy dose of provocation (also worth checking out The Liberation Of Magic, The Cultivation of Empathy, and The Importance of Being Angry). Difficult to pick one, but I particularly liked his challenging talk at the IPA from back in February – a tale of humility and indifference.

I'm a long-time fan of what GDS has been doing. Mike Bracken's post describing the work that they have done and how strategy is delivery is something I've talked about a lot this year.

I'm lucky enough to be a speaker on the excellent Google Squared programme, as is John Willshire. John's talk on how brands are fracking the social web is rich with good thinking. John has observed before now how this presentation is a continually evolving beast, which is similar to how a number of my own talks have changed over the past year.

I loved Rory Sutherland's witty piece on Why I'm Hiring Graduates With Thirds This Year 

And I thought designer Frank Chimero's talk for Build 2013 on What Screens Want was a wonderful meditation on digital canvases.

So there you have it. Lots more great writing I could have included here which is testament I think to the enormous value we all continue to get from the non-professional writing on our industry. Who says blogging is dead?

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