A few months ago I decided to write an ebook on mental illness. The idea then stayed stagnant in my mind and nothing really happened with it. A few weeks ago I couldn’t sleep and I started a mind map of what I wanted involved in the book. I realised that there really is so much involved in the mental health field.
I then sat with it for a few more weeks, looking around at things that were available already and where my product (even writing that sounds scary!) would fit in the market. I realised that I had one fundamental flaw with my plan…I’m not an expert. While this sounds like I gave up on the idea, I didn’t, it just meant that I need to rethink the idea and where I wanted to go with it.
This redirection meant that I had decided to scrap the information sections of the ebook and stick with a purely personal approach. All of the information that I would be gathering would be from websites, which is fine when it’s here on the blog and I can include the relevant links here and now, but it didn’t really sit right with me to do this in a book form.
‘Why on earth is she telling us this?’ I can hear you say to yourself. Well, I kind of need your help. You see while I do have a story to tell of my own mental health issues, I don’t really have the inkling to want to sit down and tell my whole story, from the beginning to the end. I much prefer to do it here in short (most of the time anyway) punchy blog posts. I can also only tell the story of my mental illnesses, while this could be helpful for those who have BPD or depression, these aren’t the only mental illnesses out there.
This is where you, the readers and people you know come in. I want your stories, your struggles, your experiences of dealing with mental illnesses. My hope is to create a book that has a myriad of experiences, to help spread the message of mental illness and how it affects people on a day to day basis. I hope that through this book, people who are seeking lived experiences of mental illness can find solace in the stories that are shared.
So what am I looking for? I’m looking for people with a mental illness, people who care for someone with a mental illness, family members of someone with a mental illness, friends of people with a mental illness.
I want to know
- When you were diagnosed.
- What lead to you being diagnosed.
- Experiences with receiving treatment.
- The impact mental illness has on your life on a day to day basis.
- Any experiences that had an impact on how you see your mental illness.
- Absolutely anything that you want people to know about the mental illness that you deal with.
Each story would be 800+ words. Don’t worry if you think that you can’t write that many words, I’m more than happy to help you flesh it out. You are more than welcome to submit a story and remain anonymous if you wish. Also if you have a blog, I am happy to include these details with your story.
If you want to be involved please send me an email at email@example.com. You don’t have to have your story written right now, there is plenty of time to get everything together. If you are unsure whether your story can be included, send me an email and we can have a chat. If you know anyone who you think would like to be involved then send them this blog post. The more the merrier.
I think it is great that you are taking this new approach. I really liked the idea of your original idea too, but as you said, you aren’t able to fulfil it. I really like the idea of a blog header as the title of each persons story perhaps, like your purple title above (if they have a blog of course). Just an idea. I think that will help portray what that person behind that particular story is about a little more.
Love to be involved Tegan. I’ll be in touch ASAP. Love to offer stories about my issues with depression and be the husband of someone with schizoaffective disorder
That sounds great Ian!
Tegan I think you can do both? You could have a resources page in the back of the book with your researched information or contact the mental health organisations for a statement or interview a professional?
It is such a great idea raising awareness and telling your story this way. It will helps so many people.
I think I like the more personal approach. I will include links to resources at the end though.
Are you interested in the perspective of a family member or only those who suffer MI themselves?
I’m interested in the perspective of family members as well as those who have a mental illness Amy.
You can click on the mental illness tag in the sidebar of my blog to see my stories and let me know if you want to include any of them 🙂
Awesome, thank you!
I think it’s a great concept Tegan, but you might find that people are a bit hard pressed to sum up their issues in 800 words though! Issues which have a social stigma, which can be confidently written about, and made easy to relate to will make really compelling reading.
800 is my minimum so I’m definitely happy for them to go above and beyond that word count.
Good luck with this Tegan – I think the approach is great, but I wouldn’t hold back on listing links to resources and perhaps seeking support from psychologists/psychiatrists/counsellors to provide additional perspectives and testimonials for what you are including.
I guess at the moment I am looking more for a lived experience rather than an experience from the clinical space. I will be including links to resources though.
I’m definitely interested, but unlikely to even think about writing anything until January/February. Sorry 🙁
You underestimate my ability to procrastinate Dawni, so it’s likely I will still be seeking submissions next year lol!