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This post was written by
Scott Schwertly

Scott is the Founder and CEO of Ethos3.

The main challenge with this ‘all information, all the time’ age we live in is narrowing down the wide selection of media we spend our finite amount of time digesting. What publications deserve our consideration? What television shows, movies, newspapers, magazines, and books should command our attention? What gems are we missing? What are we wasting time on?

Luckily, the always-excellent Atlantic Wire has an ongoing column that gives us literary and news junkies much needed advice on what to read. The column, called ‘Media Diet,’ asks prominent figures in media, entertainment, and politics what they read. “How do people deal with the torrent of information pouring down on us all?” it asks. “What sources can’t they live without?”

Media Diet is a great source of inspiration for a Monday morning, especially when you’re feeling particularly overwhelmed by the vastness of the Interwebs. As a presenter, you shouldn’t overlook the importance of staying up-to-date on current news and events. Your presentation will be much more nuanced, detailed and relevant if you consider the topic within the context of the latest news.

Get a behind the scenes look at what the people you respect and admire are reading. For example, Nancy Pelosi watches Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, reads hard copies of newspapers religiously (“I love reading the paper. I’m just addicted to it. It’s an old-fashioned notion, but it is what I do.”) and peruses magazines to relax.

Maureen Corrigan, book critic for NPR’s “Fresh Air”, gets up somewhere between 4 a.m. and 6 a.m., and “in order to read the number of books I do for my jobs… can’t spend much of the day dipping into other kinds of writing or media.” She tells us what magazines she’s subscribed to, and what books she’s just finished reading.

Andrew Ross Sorkin, author of Too Big to Fail and editor of NYTimes’ DealBook, is also up at the ungodly hour of 4 a.m. and hits all the big dailies– NYTimes, WSJ, and Financial Times– along with the New Yorker, Vanity Fair and New York Magazine.

The Atlantic Wire’s Media Diet columns are a nice little glimpse into the life of someone you admire, and quite possibly someone you read and follow yourself. Some are more prosaic than others, many reveal useful tips about social media, and some divulge worthwhile applications to help organize their colossal media intake.

So next time you take a quick break, rummage through the Media Diet archives for someone you’re interested in, and get familiar with their insane media intake. It’s a great place to look for some quick inspiration, as well as a helpful source of ways to enhance your presentation with relevant information.

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