Free Lobotomy by Tom Monahan

Just browsing around on issuu, I stumbled upon Tom Monahan’s book The Do-It-Yourself Lobotomy. This book is a classic, and I’m a little floored that Monahan’s offering it for free. (For those who don’t know Tom wrote the Advertising section for Communication Arts for years before passing the torch to Ernie Schenck.)

Enjoy the book. And pass on the good news. You can read it here, or on the official issuu page. Should be some great summer reading.


How to Start Your Career in Advertising

We’re happy to announce a new Makin’ Ads ebook called How to Start Your Career in Advertising.

Why’d we write it?

As a college student, I wanted to get into advertising. But in retrospect, I really had no clue what that meant. I took an internship at an agency in New York, and ended up in the accounting department.

When I finally realized what the creative department was, I tried a second internship. When the creative director asked to see my work, I handed him a stack of short stories I’d written.

We wrote How to Start Your Career In Advertising for those clueless 20-year-old versions of ourselves. (It’s free to view and to download, because our 20-year-old selves wouldn’t have paid for advice either.)

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you probably already know this stuff. But maybe you have a cousin who’s graduating high school this year. Or the neighborhood kid who mows your lawn. Or a college counselor who put you on the right track and still has a bunch of mass comm floundering in a sea of not knowing the difference between PR, marketing and advertising. Send them a link to the book. It’s no Hey, Whipple, but it’s free, it’s a quick primer, and hopefully, it’ll help a few more good people stumble into this awesome industry.
Disclosure on the design: We had originally opened up the design of this ebook to readers of the blog. However, the submissions we received fell into two categories: 1) not very good, and 2) good, but communication with the designers petered out – which is understandable since all those submissions were from portfolio school students who are busy putting their books together. This version was designed and Illustrated by Copywriters.

Makin’ Ads Abroad

I spent the last two years working in an ad agency in Europe. Since returning to the States a couple months ago, I’ve received several requests for advice on working overseas.
To answer some of these questions, and give a little insight to my time abroad, I wrote an ebook, Makin’ Ads Abroad.
You can download it here. Even if you have no interest in working abroad, I hope you find something in there you can use. Feel free to pass it on. I’d love to hear feedback – what you like, what you didn’t, what you wish I’d included.

The Makin’ Ads Design Our eBook Contest

About a year ago, we at decided to write a book for high school and college students who want to get into advertising – kids who might be brilliant writers and art directors, but have no idea what it means to “put your book together.”

It will be a free ebook that anyone can download. And we’ve already got our list of undergrad communication programs we want to send it to.

Thing is, we want it to look good. Really good.

That’s where you come in.

If you’d like this book to go out with a sweet “art directed by [your name here]” prominently displayed in the credits, we’d love to give you a shot at it. And hopefully, it’s something you like enough to put in your own portfolio.

Here’s what you have to do:

1. Download the text of the ebook here.

2. Lay it out however you like. You don’t have to design the whole book. Just a cover and a page or two to convey your idea and aesthetic. Keep in mind, like most ebooks, this will probably be viewed as a series of single pages in a pdf. But if you have a better idea, we’re open to it.

3. Submit your design to Deadline is August 15.

All submissions will be displayed online and open to public vote. Feel free to spam your friends so they’ll vote for yours. We’re not offering cash prizes or a new car, but the top three designs will be made available for download on And the one we like best will be sent out to mass comm college deans and other uppity-ups.

Good luck. Have fun.