Aunty Debbie's Advice Column, part 6 of the trilogy ... Debbie Bennett

Sixth instalment, eh? Who knew this advice lark could get so exciting? My first agony column (and yes, it really is agony most of the time) was waaay back in 2013. Bad writing has of course been around for much longer than that, but I like to think I've helped so many people better themselves over the years.

So what shall we talk about today? I like to focus on the moment, on the themes I'm seeing online and the questions that are really, truly asked on social media -- albeit spiced up just a teeny, tiny bit for added value and then condensed into the pure essence of ...

I want to publish a book. I watched a YouTube video by someone who said I could sell thousands a day and get rich really quickly. Tell me how I do it, as I can't be bothered to look online myself and do some research. My time is really important to me.

Well, what kind of book do you want to write?

I don't want to write a book. I just want to publish a book. Lots of books. Hundreds of books, so I can get rich fast like the guy on YouTube.

OK. So what kind of book do you want to publish?

A journal. Then I only need to put a few words on each page - something about appreciating each day with a picture of the sunrise, or something. The rest of the page can be blank, so I don't have to do anything else.

So you're going to write a few words on every page?

Well, no. My mum likes listening to music so I thought I'd just put a few lyrics on each page. About sunrises. Or anything, really.

You do know you can't use song lyrics without permission, don't you? Not even a few words.

But nobody will find out, will they?

They might. And then you might get sued. It's really not worth it. Why not make up your own?

Write them myself? Too much like hard work. Maybe I'll leave the words out completely and just have some pictures.

So it'd be a bit like an art book, then?

Can I get rich quick from them? Only journals and notebooks seem the way to go. I'll charge £5 each for them.

But I could go to my local shop and buy 5 for that price. Why would I buy yours on Amazon?

Because I'll have some amazing pictures. The YouTube guy says there are hundreds online I can choose from. I just have to make sure about the copyright.

You do know there is a big difference between copyright-free and using stuff commercially? Images have different licences for different purposes.

Oh. Well what about a colouring book? Everybody likes them.

Are you going to draw the pictures yourself? No? Well, same principle applies then.

So what can I publish to make lots of money?

How about writing a story? 

What? Actually writing?

Yes. Learning the craft. Creating something unique that you can be proud of.

Will that make me rich quick?

Maybe. But probably not.

Nah. I know - I'll bung some word searches together. And copy some stuff from the newspapers and change a few bits. I'll make a puzzle book! So how do I publish it? Can you contact me on WhatsApp and give me a full list of instructions?


Aunty Debbie's other terribly important musings about writing can be found at:


Peter Leyland said…
Thanks Debbie for that witty send up of the writing ingenue or ingenu. It made me laugh.

Now you can tell me just how I can get my great work on bibliotherapy published!!
Julia jones said…
Where would we be without Aunty Debbie? Thanks for a great start to a blog-wrting day
Dianne Pearce said…
That made me laugh, and I thought you handled it very kindly! It is frustrating, right? I also feel that way about the memoirs. "I want to publish my story because I've been through some things!" So have we all Darling....

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