What do you think, Ratty?

Dear Ratty,

I’m no great reader, you know this about me. I do love a lot of book related things though, like words and bookstores. However, last month, I read a book….from start to finish! I read “The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving a Fuck” by Sarah Knight. It was pretty good: a quick and easy read. A well-meaning friend had given me “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up” and I didn’t even finish that. Basically, the whole book could be summarized into this sentence: Hold every thing you own in your hands, if it does not spark joy, get rid of it. That is the book in essence. Is there really a need to break it down any further? I guess if you want to sell books, then yes. I don’t even know why that book started such a craze, actually, I tell a lie. I think I know why. It, like so many self-help books had THE BEST TITLE EVER.

Here is a list of some of my favourite self-help titles:

  • “I LOVE ME” (all caps really brings it home)
  • “The art of EXTREME self-care” (how does ‘extreme’ self-care differ from just self-care? I’m guessing rather then looking in the mirror and saying ‘i am proud of my accomplishments’ you dim the lights,  look in the mirror and tell yourself over and over’I adore you’)
  • ‘The healing power of the vagus nerve” (I love anything vagus nerve related)
  • “What to say when you talk to yourself” (because I am constantly in dialogue with myself)
  • “Ten days to self-esteem (!!!!)” (only ten days? What if you’re a slow learner? What if you have a problem with commitment, because you have low self-esteem? What then?)
  • “Hell week: Seven days to be your best self” (I bet it’s just seven days of non-stop squats and burpees)

These titles are amazing, am I right? Why can’t ALL books have titles like these?

So Ratty, I have two questions for you. You can do whichever one floats your boat:

Choose three classic novels and give them self-help titles, OR create three self-help titles and tell me what each one would address.

Hi Moles,

Self-help is quite an industry isn’t it? I can’t abide by it. I mean maybe if there was one book to read but there are too many techniques. I’d much rather just have a Pinterest board full of pithy quotes written over some pastoral shot of Iceland. As you say, do these really need to be books? Ernieways your question: I choose to rename three classic novels with self-help titles. Here I go!

  • “1984 Reasons to Love Yourself”
  • “On the Road… to Self-Esteem (!!!!)”
  • “Managing Great Expectations”


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