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October 2019 Non-Fiction

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Scatterbrain
How the Mind's Mistakes Make Humans Creative, Innovative, and Successful
By (author): Henning Beck
9781771644013 Hardcover, Printed dust jacket English General Trade SCIENCE / Life Sciences / Neuroscience Oct 08, 2019
$34.95 CAD
Active 6 x 9.1 x 1.3 in | 620 gr 352 pages Greystone Books

In this mind-bending book, an esteemed neuroscientist explains why perfectionism is pointless—and argues that mistakes, missteps, and flaws are the keys to success.

Remember that time you screwed up simple math or forgot the name of your favorite song? What if someone told you that such embarrassing “brain farts” are actually secret weapons, proof of your superiority to computers and AI?

In Scatterbrain, we learn that boredom awakens the muse, distractions spark creativity, and misjudging time creates valuable memories, among other benefits of our faulty minds. Throughout, award-winning neuroscientist Henning Beck’s hilarious asides and brain-boosting advice make for delightful reading of the most cutting-edge neuroscience our brains will (maybe never) remember.


  • Henning Beck is an engaging public speaker and champion Science Slammer in Germany. Here is a link to a popular TEDx talk he did on how the brain creates ideas https://youtu.be/oJfFMoAgbv8
  • In Scatterbrain, he explains how the flaws and mistakes of our brains, are actually our secret weapons, enabling us to think more creatively.
  • He also says our brains are better than computers or AI. AI may be able to outperform humans in playing games or recognizing faces - but we're able to invent new games or rules.
  • Beck is working with a speakers agency to secure talks at conferences and with businesses in the US.

Henning Beck received his PhD in neuroscience from the Graduate School of Cellular & Molecular Neuroscience, University of Tübingen, and holds an international diploma in Project Management from the University of California Berkeley. He is a frequent lecturer, workshop leader, science slam speaker, and consultant on topics such as neuroscience and creativity.

  • Reviews in national and international outlets
  • National and international radio interviews
  • Science podcast interviews
  • Features in health and science magazines
  • Cross-promotion with science and tech organizations
  • Advance review copies


“Illuminating, and a joy to read, [Scatterbrain] offers, in comparison to other recent neuroscience titles, a refreshingly accessible and relatable take on the brain’s inner workings that should appeal to both science buffs and casual readers.”
Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

Scatterbrain is the perfect explanation for one’s great achievements and an excellent excuse for those frequent mishaps.”
—The Psychologist

“Being scatterbrained has long been seen as a disadvantage, but as a neuroscientist, Henning Beck knows better. His engaging book will convince you that forgetting helps you remember and distractions can make you more creative.”
—Adam Grant,New York Times bestselling author of Originals and Give and Take, and host of TED's WorkLife podcast

“For anyone who has ever momentarily blanked on a name, choked under pressure, or kicked themselves for making a 'careless' mistake, you may now forgive yourself. With this insightful and accessible book, Beck humorously sledgehammers the notion that our brains are infallible.”
—Zach Schonbrun, author of The Performance Cortex

“Beck is definitely a scientist of the people and his approach ensures that all readers can glean something intriguing from this book's pages.”
Booklist

“In an era of continuous self-optimization, Scatterbrain by German neuroscientist Dr. Henning Beck offers novel insights on our often self-defeating pursuit of perfection, and provides a roadmap to more creative thinking and better decision-making to realize one’s full potential. A must-read!”
—Sandra Navidi, Founder and CEO of BeyondGlobal and author of $uperHubs

“Scatterbrain is a brilliant and engaging user’s guide to the brain, masterfully transforming discoveries from neuroscience into practical personal insights and disruptive corporate practice.”
—Donald Hoffman, Professor of Cognitive Sciences at the University of California, and author of The Case Against Reality

“The brain is a messy, faulty wonder, and if we could all agree that perfection is not the mind’s ultimate goal, we would be much better off. Henning Beck shows us how to appreciate our imperfect brains—and is fine with readers straying from the page from time to time!”
—Ylva Østby, author of Adventures in Memory

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