Monday, May 15, 2023

It Is Done

Today I finally published my first book on Amazon!

The Dickensian Reset is currently available on the kindle store. Before I start promoting this, I'm waiting for the paperback version to be approved. 

It's been a few months of effort, but I'm excited to finally be at the next phase of the journey. 

Friday, May 5, 2023

The Perfect Read

Phoebe and I have now gone through two rounds of edits. I think she's exhausted.

I'm now on a quest for the perfect read; a read-through of The Dickensian Reset where I change nothing. I don't know how long it will take to get there, but the idea of publishing, then finding something I want to change—after it's too late—troubles me.

Lilly likes to remind me that perfection is unattainable, and that I have to stop editing sometime, but I'd feel better if I could make it through a read and not be tweaking sentences along the way. 

That said, I'm closer than ever. I have typeset the book at this point (which unfortunately makes it more difficult to edit since I'm maintaining it in two different formats), I've registered for an ISBN and LCCN, and I'm partway through the copyright process.

All I need now is that perfect read.

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

What's in a name?

To protect the privacy of my fellow psych ward patients, I had always intended to change their names while writing The Dickensian Reset. Unfortunately, the stigma surrounding mental illness is too great to even consider otherwise. 

What was less clear to me was the need to alter my own identity, not to mention the identity of my family, coworkers, doctors, hospital staff, and nurses. Both Lilly and Phoebe (not their real names) have encouraged me to do so to protect myself from both stalkers and potential litigation.

Phoebe suggested I take it one step even further; to change the names of certain places and other details mentioned in the book to make this transformation even more complete. One thing that I'm not changing is Erie County Medical Center, the setting of most of the story.

When I originally wrote the manuscript for The Dickensian Reset, I used everyone's real names just to keep my own confusion to a minimum. Now as I go back and anonymize the text, I feel less connected to it. It's been a difficult exercise to come up with names for people that are just as fitting as their real ones. 

I wish I didn't have to do it at all. There's a large part of me that wants to live openly with my disorder; the world simply isn't ready to accept mentally ill people. 

Sunday, April 16, 2023

Why create a blog?

It’s 2023. Aren’t blogs redundant, if not passé?

Just as there is still room for books in the world where video entertainment reigns, I believe there is still room for a modest blog by your humble narrator on an Internet filled with quick tweets and TikTok videos.

Blogs are a different pace, something to enjoy over a cup of coffee rather than a mindless scroll. Blogs invite comments rather than a mindless thumb of approval or retweet.

I’ve always been a writer. The format of other Internet mediums aren’t my speed. I’ll take part in them, because I have to for marketing, but they are not my medium of choice. 

My hope is that this blog allows me to connect to my readers on a deeper level. Think of it as bonus content for the book, a continuation of the conversation that started there.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Friday, April 14, 2023

Happy Anniversary?

It was two years ago today that I went into the psych ward.

Being in mania felt great; I felt invincible. It was the most spiritual experience of my life. 

But I was also deeply unwell. I was unable to function at my day job. I became someone other than myself. It put an immense strain on my marriage.

When I left the psych ward, I began writing a memoir of my experience, The Dickensian Reset. I wrote until I got to a point where the work became too personal to continue writing. For some time afterward, I was unhappy with the result.

I finally picked up the book again last month and completed it. At this point, the draft is in the hands of my sister, Phoebe, who has agreed to edit it. 

I'm very thankful for her interest and her work on the book. At the same time, I'm worried that her edits may change my voice. I plan to comb over each change and see whether it's something I want to accept or not. 

In the meanwhile, I started working on cover designs for the book. Oddly, the thing that's been hardest for Phoebe, my wife Lilly, and I to agree upon is the subtitle. Since you have to actually read The Dickensian Reset in order to understand the title, the subtitle is key to get folks to actually pick up the book. 

I plan on offering the work as a paperback, kindle, and audible audiobook. Will folks actually read it? I would be honored if that was the case. I worry that in this media-saturated world  it might not stand out enough.

So, if you're here exploring my blog because you've enjoyed the book, please do share it with others.  

It Is Done

Today I finally published my first book on Amazon! The Dickensian Reset  is currently available on the kindle store . Before I start promot...