8 Episodes of the Tim Ferriss Show Every Writer Should Listen To

Dickie Bush

Ultimate Guide Table of Contents

I've listened to every single episode of the Tim Ferriss show.

And some of my all-time favorites are when Tim interviews prolific writers, diving into their creative process, routines, and hard-earned lessons.

Whether you're looking to build a Daily Writing Habit, overcome impostor syndrome, or generate more ideas, these 8 episodes are a must-listen:

1. Episode #485 with Jerry Seinfeld


In this episode, Tim interviews legendary comedy icon Jerry Seinfeld. Seinfeld was the co-creator of the homonymous sitcom who went on to receive numerous awards and become one of history's most successful television shows. He also happens to be an incredibly prolific writer.

In this conversation, they chat about:

  • Setting constraints
  • Creating your writing system
  • Alternating between writing and rewriting

And much, much more.

You can listen to it on Spotify here.

2. Episode #497 with Joyce Carol Oates


In this episode, Tim interviews best-selling and award-winning author Joyce Carol Oates.

After publishing her first book in 1963, Oates has published 58 novels, and several volumes of short-stories, poetry and essays. She is, hands down, one of the one most prolific and hard-working writers of this generation. In this conversation, they chat about:

  • Walking as a creativity boost
  • Maximizing focus and overcoming distractions
  • How to quit overthinking and actually do the work

And much, much more.

You can listen to it on Spotify here.

3. Episode #15 with Neil Strauss


In this episode, Tim interviews ten-time New York Times best-selling author, journalist and ghostwriter Neil Strauss.

Neil became a celebrity and ultra successful writer after going undercover in a secret society of pickup artists for two years and writing 2 books about it. He's also been an editor at Rolling Stone and a staff writer for The New York Times. In this conversation, they discuss:

  • Empathetic writing
  • The drafting and editing process
  • Writer's block as performance anxiety
  • Overcoming impostor syndrome by killing your ego

And much, much more.

You can listen to it on Spotify here.

4. Episode #501 with Steven Pressfield


In this episode, Tim interviews Steven Pressfield, the author of The War of Art, Do The Work, Turning Pro and a dozen other books.

After 30 years of endless failures and financial struggles, Pressfield finally became a successful and well-known writer. One of his secrets? Overcoming what he famously called "The Resistance". In this conversation, they chat about:

  • Overcoming self-sabotage
  • How to go from amateur to professional
  • How everything in your life changes when you start to ship yourwork

And much, much more.

You can listen to it on Spotify here.

5. Episode #427 with Michael Lewis


In this episode, Tim chats with best-selling author and journalist Michael Lewis.

Lewis has written many successful books, including Liar's Poker, Moneyball, The Blind Side, The Big Short, The Undoing Project, and The Fifth Risk. Both of his books about sports became movies nominated for Academy Awards. So did The Big Short, his book about the 2008 financial crisis. In this conversation, they talk about:

  • Becoming a master storyteller
  • Designing your creative writing process
  • Having fun as the only sustainable writing practice

And much, much more.

You can listen to it on Spotify here.

6. Episode #231 with Cheryl Strayed


In this episode, Tim chats with the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling memoir Wild, Cheryl Strayed.

Besides Wild, Strayed has also written other successful books, numerous essays, and is the host of two popular podcasts. Her books have been translated into nearly forty languages around the world and have been adapted for both the screen and the stage. In this conversation, they cover:

  • Writing like a mother#$%!er
  • Writing two crappy pages per day
  • Tailoring your writing habit to what works for you

And much, much more.

You can listen to it on Spotify here.

7. Episode #366 with Neil Gaiman


In this episode, Tim interviews yet another extremely prolific and multifaceted writer: Neil Gaiman.

Gaiman is the author of short fiction, novels, comic books, graphic novels,  nonfiction, audio theatre, and films. His work has won many literary awards, including the Hugo, Nebula, and Bram Stoker awards, as well as the Newbery and Carnegie medals. In this conversation, they discuss Neil's:

  • Biggest rule for writing
  • Writing shed of solitude
  • Writing and editing process

And much, much more.

You can listen to it on Spotify here.

8. Tim Ferriss himself on how to use writing to clarify your thinking


Writing is the highest-leverage skill of the 21st century.

It is not just a great medium to share ideas, but also an incredible tool to refine your thinking. In this video, Tim shares his writing process in detail. From his approach to journaling and his habit of writing "2 crappy pages" every day to his editing process and the way he asks others for feedback, this is a 6-minute masterclass on writing well both for yourself and for others.

You can watch it on YouTube here.

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