Neurotica: Must click lust

mental lifeboats cover

Must click cover design

Woody Allen said if you want to make God laugh then tell him your plans.

I told God I’m writing a self-help book and I want it to be a bestseller. He said I should be a stand-up comic instead. He could do with more laughs.

This is what I’d call an Almighty Setback.

But I’m sticking to my plan.

What I need are success pointers. So I buy a book called Make a Killing on Kindle. It’s my bible since God abandoned me.

So far, I’ve learnt two important things. First, an eBook needs a “Must Click” title. Second, its cover has to inspire “Click Lust.”

No one will buy my book if I ignore such advice. My bible is adamant about this.

My missive starts life as Mental Lifeboats: Seven Surefire Ways to Stay Sane in a Mad World.

I have no clue if it’s a Must Click title.

So I concentrate on a Click Lust cover.

I think Mental Lifeboats suggests a rustic setting. Perhaps a canoe on a tranquil river will get people excited.

My sister Sue is the cover designer. I email her with my new click wisdom:

Me: The cover has to make people lust after the book. Could you find a picture of a boat on a lake? Surrounded by nature.

Sue: It would look better with a picture of you in the boat.

Me: No, a picture of me would put people off. I look like the Crypt Keeper. Leave the boat empty.

Sue: No, an empty boat on a river is creepy.

Me: Could you fill it with fluffy animals then? (I had a sudden insight that little creatures might inspire Click Lust).

Sue: Absolutely not. You’re writing a book about sanity and a boat with fluffy animals makes you look anything but sane. No animals.

Me: What about a possum?

Sue: No possum.

Me: Ok. Maybe a beaver?

Sue: No beaver. I think it needs a picture of a nice lady. We can always change it later.

I’m unsure if this nice lady will inspire Click Lust but I’ve wasted enough time already.

I need to write.

By the time I get back into the flow I can’t find seven ways to stay sane. I can only think of five.

So my Must Click title becomes Five Unusual Ways to Stay Sane in a Mad World.

It’s the craziest thing I’ve ever written.

One of the chapters is on mindfulness. And it involves a zombie invasion, a band of survivors, and a trip to the supermarket.

At this point, I consider stand-up comedy. I’ve even made myself laugh.

The book lies in eLimbo for months until I give it one last go.

It’s still a self-help book and it’s now called The Mesolithic Diet for Mind and Body.

I have no idea if people will lust after it. I’ve moved on.

All I want to do is finish the thing so I can read it.

I need all the help I can get.

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About the author

Claire Bell is the health and wellbeing editor of Midlifexpress. She is the author of Stone Age Secrets for Mind and Body and Comma Magic. Print and ebooks available on Amazon.



2 Comments


  1. After the Divine Beloved and I stopped giggling over our wheatbix our advice to you is to register for the Melbourne Comedy Festival, God loves a good laugh, we are sure he will take you back into his fold. KEEP WRITING!!

    • Thanks Angie. I shall register for Melbourne’s Comedy Festival immediately. (Unless the Almighty Pervasiveness has other plans for my careening artistic trajectory.)
      Cheers, Claire

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