She may be one of the most popular Internet stars today but Canadian-Indian YouTube star Lilly Singh believes people have the wrong notion that digital space is an easy route to being "rich and famous". With 11 million subscribers to her credit, Lilly is one of the highest-earning stars on the video streaming website. Her videos, often a witty take on topical issues, have featured celebrities like Dwayne Johnson and Priyanka Chopra. Lilly, currently in India to promote her book "How to be a Bowse: A Guide to Conquering", believes nothing can replace the old-fashioned hard work when it comes to achieving one's dreams. "Digital space is great to have your voice but you need to have an opinion. It has definitely given voice to those who could not be heard before. But I don't encourage people to make YouTube videos just to be rich and famous. "Some people perceive that the digital space is an easy route. It is not. You have to be dedicated, perceptive and have a good work ethic. It is a great medium if you are passionate about what you are talking about. Do it for the right reasons," she told PTI in an interview. She has taken this thought forward in her book, which she says, is a kind of self-help guide that can be referenced in real-life situations. "The message that I want my readers to take away from the book is the art of hard work, especially the younger generation. They feel they are entitled to success. We are in this age where lot of quotes are thrown at as about how special and wonderful we are. "This is great but what about working for your dreams. That's what the book is about, the old fashioned hard work." Comedy seems to be the tool for youngsters to communicate these days and it has given birth to the new-age celebrity of digital stars and stand-up comedians.
Lilly feels humour is a great way to deal with thorny issues. "Comedy is a great way to discuss tings that are hard to talk about. If I want to talk about an issue, comedy is a great vehicle for that. It is light-hearted, easy to digest and people get just a little bit offended. They are more likely to remember what you are trying to say," she says. Though Internet has also given rise to people who love to be easily offended about things, Lilly says that does not stop her from challenging stereotypes. Her most popular videos are the ones where she talks about Indian parents, including hers, who she says, enjoy her shows and videos. "When I first started, I did not really tell them. They just found out from relatives. They did not really get the whole Internet thing but they were supportive. Now, they have seen my videos and they love what I do. They know that the characters are not really them," she says. Lilly, who also visited Hyderabad and Mumbai, says she has a special connection with her fans in India, who love and support her. Her tour is being curated by Event Speciale. The US, Canada, Dubai, Australia and the UK are some of the countries on her book promotional tour list. The book is published by Penguin Random House.
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