TRE 11 Seth Godin

I interviewed Seth Godin this morning via Skype.  He is the author of Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?, published last month for Kindle, nook, Sony Reader, and hardcover.  It’s a great read, and if you purchase it on Kindle by about March 1 you’ll receive a free personal addendum, Insubordinate, in which Seth describes several people who qualify as linchpins.  What’s a linchpin?  That’s someone who has found his or her true work, as an artist does, and is overcoming the resistance of the lizard brain to actually ship stuff that matters, because it’s original and given freely.

In the early going, my own lizard brain resisted with a couple of clever arguments (noted in this blog post) to Seth’s exhortation, which will come as no surprise to him.  Lizard-like resistance is what a linchpin always faces and overcomes.

In addition to his new book, we talked about Seth’s critique of the traditional publishing industry and his vision of how Amazon, or someone, could remake the eBook platform into something much more compelling as a way for authors and readers to connect.

I prepared for our conversation by watching videos of Seth’s TED talk in May, 2009, and his presentation at last year’s O’Reilly Tools of Change conference.

Here is a complete list of Seth’s previous books.

Click here to download this episode.

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51 Responses to “TRE 11 Seth Godin”

  1. Mark C. Webster Says:

    Great stuff, Len.

    I have to say, Linchpin has really stuck with me since I read it. By identifying and naming the Lizard brain, Seth has really woken me up to how big a role it has played in my past decision-making. I’ve had a half-baked ebook project for awhile, that I kept finding reasons not to finish it. But lately, I’ve pushed it into high gear.

    Need to kill the lizard!

  2. Janette Says:

    Excellent!! Now, if only Amazon would let us poor benighted Australians buy Linchpin, my positive expectations about e-publishing would be wonderfully and completely met.


  3. John McLellan Says:

    You and Seth \get it.\ It’s refreshing, too, to hear you both speak so eloquently about the future of reading. Thank you for doing what you’re doing. It’s fun.

  4. Nelson Bates Says:

    Loved it! Nice line of questioning by you, I always enjoy Seth’s viewpoint of the publishing industry.

  5. Kathy Nicholls Says:

    What a great interview, and from my own home state. This book has in a very short time changed my entire outlook on what I do and given me insight I don’t think I would have gotten anywhere else. I am committed now to not listen to the lizard brain and SHIP!

  6. Ed Says:

    I downloaded Linchpin to my iPod, Nano, and iPhone via my Audiobooks account and within minutes heard content that paid for the book (audiobook). Although the information on artists starting getting a bit long for me, the second half of the book pumped me back up!

    Yes the lizard brain tries to protect us but we need to break out and be a genuis more than one time in our lives.

    Although I don’t always agree with Seth, I think he probably prefers it that way thereby creating debate and thought.

  7. allan Says:

    Great interview. It offers the opportunity to focus my writing toward readers, rather than toward a publisher’s acceptable format.

    Along those lines, as valuation for my opinion, my Captcha words assuring I’m human read “Mr dumbness”

  8. Brett Gilbertson Says:

    Great interview. I get it. However, all this talk of apps seems a bit redundant to me – like a step backwards from the social media context. Apps to me are just another device – It has become Apple speak. An “App Centric” world – now that is Apple speak and i think it’s going in the wrong direction, at least long term.

    I think there’s much beyond the concept of Apps… looming. In fact in a way Amazon is already there with thier website. They just need to get closer to the customer and cross the web / user barriers by getting thier info into social media like facebook.

  9. Hank Lambert Says:

    Excellent interview, Len! The discussion of the Publishing industry was enlightening to say the least. Keep up the great work!

  10. Marty Says:

    Hey Jeanette from Australia? Brick and mortar bookstores have Linchpin. Saw it in Dymocks last week.

  11. Seth Godin @ The Reading Edge » frEdSCAPEs 3.0 Says:

    […] ~ TRE 11 Seth Godin […]

  12. Phil Simon Says:

    This was an amazing podcast. I found it extremely informative and intersting. I can see why Godin is so successful.

  13. Andy Traub Says:

    Thanks for a great interview. I listen to everything Seth does (if possible) and this is really a well done interview. You don’t talk much and you lead him in a very subtle way…which is nice. So well done. Excited to explore your blog some more.

  14. Jose Joaquin Perez Krumenacker Says:


    Fantastic format, super interviews and a great voice.

    I believe that “The Listening Edge Podcast” would be more appropiate, considering that technology seems to be bringing all of us where all started: the spoken Word.

    By the way, what tool are you using for your audio clips?

  15. Marshall Wayne Says:

    Thank you for putting this up! I’m a huge Seth Godin fan. I love how concise his daily blog posts are and how easy his books are to devour. Linchpin is great!

  16. Daniel@RelevantEntrepreneur Says:

    Excellent 27 minutes, Len. I look forward to listening more.

    I think that “app” that Seth mentioned makes sense. Its convenient for ebook readers, the app is simple to develop and its going to be financially viable for the app-developer/owner.

    I like reading business books to improve the way I run my company. And an “app for entrepreneur” is a very appealing idea to me.

  17. Two quotes and two links for a snow day « wanna-biz | It's a process, not an event Says:

    […] audio interview: my hyperbolic rants and a few insights about the future of ebooks. Double last-minute bonus: an audio interview about linchpins and software and […]

  18. Book Marketing: David Wood, Chris Brogan and Seth Godin Says:

    […] Recently, the The Reading Edge Podcast had Seth on to talk about book marketing and what he did to launch Linchpin. But, Seth spent the majority of the time laying out some powerful next generation ebook publication and marketing strategies. […]

  19. Two quotes and two links for a snow day | Internet Marketing Syndicate Says:

    […] audio interview: my hyperbolic rants and a few insights about the future of ebooks. Double last-minute bonus: an audio interview about linchpins and software and […]

  20. Gregr209 Says:

    Wow. Great interview! Seth was DEAD on with his comments about the publishing industry. It amazes me the publishing industry hasn’t learned any lessons for the music industry. The writing is on the wall and Seth is right. They have only 3 choices (listen to the interview to hear the choices :-) )

    Great work Len. Thanks for all that you do!


  21. Gregr209 Says:

    Oh by the way it was interesting when I went to the Kindle store to look at several of Seth’s other books…many were priced at 14 to 15 bucks! I won’t be buying any of those books, not at those prices but I think I will grab Linchpin for 9.99!

  22. Episode Number Five is Alive | Reed G Porter Online Says:

    […] mention The Reading Edge’s interview of Seth […]

  23. Shann Says:

    Thanks Len!
    Thanks for providing another high quality interview.

  24. Michelle Cubas Says:

    Enjoyed you and Seth.
    The discussion makes one wish to be an app developer!


  25. CARTOONING / Illustration SERVICE Says:

    Linchpin + “lizard brain” . . . so after 30+ years doing what I do fulltime, why now do I discover this terminology? I assumed all I had was “drive” or “inspiration”. This stuff is waking me up! Keep it going! Good work.

  26. ashton Says:

    I wonder if his large frontal lobe is the reason for his insane ability to think write and generally be awesome…

  27. Art & Story Extreme!! » Dick!! Says:

    […] about daily sketches, some thoughts on publishing inspired by a Seth Godin interview, taking a hard look at our publishing schedule, and extreme swear […]

  28. Why We Won’t See a Publishers’ Bookstore App for the iPad | The Author-izer Says:

    […] Edgerly interviewed Seth Godin on February 24th for The Reading Edge podcast. (It took me forever to get that pun, for some reason). Though Godin was there ostensibly to talk […]

  29. Leslie Says:

    I love Seths books. I bought LinchPin when it came out and got a lot out of it. BTW, excellent skype interview!

  30. WishTales » Blog Archive » Seth Godin and the Lizard Brain Says:

    […] Reading Edge Podcast put up a bit from Godin a few months ago talking about his book Linchpin: Are you Indispensible, and in particular […]

  31. Sandra Says:

    Just bought the book, I’ll be back to say more :) Thanks for posting!

  32. Joseph Says:

    Thanks for sharing your thought about this book, I had heard about it but wasnt sure what it was about,
    I like your writing style,
    I will come visit more often and tell my friends on facebook.

  33. Hanan Weiskopf Says:

    Awesome book. You get it here:

  34. Hanan Weiskopf Says:

    (I meant the Seth Godin’s newest free eBook, the an addendum to “Linchpin”)

  35. One god apostolic Says:

    Extremely inspiring publish, Many thanks !!…

  36. iPad Vook Review of Sages and Scientists Says:

    […] Another idea for Vook: make one single Vook app and let readers access titles from there. Reader data collection is a mighty powerful thing. Just ask Seth. […]

  37. Mark Robbins Says:

    Name: Mark Robbins
    Comment: I love my Kindle! I never read so much until I purchased an ereader. Buy Kindle Online

  38. Sandra Hopkins Says:

    That was cool! You’ve interviewed a very good author. I envy you. It’s nice to know something that comes primarily from the person itself. Thank you for telling us what Linchpin is.

  39. Topic: Email to Seth Godin : Charles Bohannan Says:

    […] Here is the email exchange. You can also click on the thumbnail on the right to view a screenshot of the actual email. And if you want to listen to the podcast, you can grab it here. […]

  40. Mike Says:

    Anyone know where to find this?

    In his book Free Prize Inside on page 131 it says

    *Bonus: An annotated, revised version of the following is found in the latest version of the endnotes, available for free at

    I found the end notes

    But I do not see the new list of Edges?

  41. Nicole Smith Says:

    I was browsing through the pages and I ended up on your page. I wondered what that book is all about. It made so curious that I wanna have the copy of that right here, right now. Seems inspiring and I am already so excited to have a copy of it. Thanks for the information you shared.

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