How to Make Your Own Burn Book

Written by john c. erianne
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How to Make Your Own Burn Book
Creating a burn book is easy and fun, but also quite risky. (diary image by Lev Dolgatshjov from

If you've seen the movie "Mean Girls", you already know what a burn book is. The term, "burn" is a slang word that means, "insult". A burn book, simply put, is a diary-like collection of mean, nasty insults written about one's peers. While the burn book is related to a slam book, unlike a slam book, it doesn't follow a question and answer format and is not intended to be passed around for public viewing. Also, whereas a slam book contains opinions and observations which are essentially true, a burn book may contain information that is completely fabricated.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Spiral notebook
  • Pen
  • Markers
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
  • Yearbook
  • Magazines
  • Stickers

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  1. 1

    Buy a notebook of some kind. A spiral notebook or composition book is more than adequate for the burn book. However, if you are looking for something fancier and more durable, you may want to use a bound journal or scrapbook.

  2. 2

    Decorate the cover. You want the cover to standout and be easily distinguishable from other notebooks or journals. Using the glue stick, paste magazine cut-outs. Apply stickers and random doodles. You may also want to add a little bit of glitter and lipstick kisses in keeping with the "Mean Girls" theme.

  3. 3

    Acquire a yearbook. Since you will be cutting out pictures of fellow students and faculty you intend to "burn", you may not want to dispose of your own yearbook. As such, it may be a better option to buy an extra copy that you feel comfortable destroying.

  4. 4

    Write an entry. Be sure to write the name of the person you are "burning" at the top of the page. Cut the person's picture out of the yearbook and paste it onto the page. Add an unflattering remark about that person. Ideally, this person should be a peer or school faculty member you do not like or feel has wronged you in some way.

Tips and warnings

  • Hide the burn book in a safe place. Like diaries or journals, burn books are not intended to be read by others. Store the book someplace not easily accessed by others, but easy for you to remember.
  • Write something about yourself in your burn book. This will make it easier to deny ownership of the book should it be misplaced and found by the wrong person.
  • Write your burn book entries in different colour pens and experiment with different styles of penmanship. Not only will this make your burn book more colourful, it will obscure the identity of the author.
  • Creating a burn book is a risky proposition; even if you have no intention of showing it to others, accidents happen. Should your burn book fall into the wrong hands,there's a very good chance you may lose friendships, make enemies and receive disciplinary action from parents or teachers. People do not like reading hurtful, unflattering things about themselves.

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