Mad Like Me: Travels in Bipolar Country
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What is your book about?
“Mad Like Me” is a fearlessly honest memoir with self-help tips for recovery, and a guide for family and friends of people with bipolar. The book is a testimony to hope and recovery, and to my family who stood by me throughout. A must-read for people with bipolar disorder working towards recovery, for families/carers who need insight into what it is truly like to have bipolar, and for therapists, psychiatrists and other health professionals. My memoir has been very positively reviewed, and the ebook has been a #1 Amazon bestseller for over a year now.
What inspired you to write your book?
I’m a health professional (nurse with a PhD in public health) diagnosed with bipolar disorder 12 years ago at age 51. It’s now my mission to help end the stigma against mental illnesses of all kinds. In chronicling what my family and I experienced, I hope to demystify this misunderstood disorder, and humanize the people it affects.
If you have a business related to your book, tell us about it:
Recently, I have started doing public presentations (paid) about bipolar, based on the book.
What is a typical day like for you?
I try to do some writing every day, though I work full-time as a public health consultant, so this isn’t always possible. I also try to exercise, meditate, relax, socialize, and get good sleep—all important to maintain my mental health!
What do you most enjoy about what you do?
I’ve always enjoyed writing, and now, having a clear mission to break stigma against mental illness, I have even more motivation!
What are some favorite books you’d recommend to our readers?
I love Stephen King’s “On Writing: a memoir of the craft” and I return to it often. Ironically, I don’t enjoy King’s fiction at all, but I have learned so much about the craft of writing from this nonfiction book.
What advice do you have to offer our readers?
Write your passion. And write every day if you possibly can. You’ll get into a “flow state” and be much more productive that way. (But I don’t beat myself up about that if I sometimes can’t make time to write. Be kind to yourself!)
What would people be surprised to learn about you?
I usually come across as confident and self-assured, but deep down I’m a real introvert.
What’s next for you?
Right now, I’m editing an anthology of bipolar stories, titled “Tales from Bipolar Country.” There will be three sections: stories from people with bipolar, our family members, and the health and other professionals who work with us. Writers’ Guidelines are posted on my website if you’d like to submit a story.