Another amazing author today here, folks, and another one without a picture! :) Instead, we have her logo – A locked Pandora box – chosen because she put all her bad memories away in the Pandora box of her mind and locked them away now.
She tells all about her journey in her inspirational book – ‘My Alien Self: My Journey Back to Me‘.
I’m really excited to have Amanda Green here, especially because it’s OCD awareness week and World mental health day tomorrow, and all her work is meant to stop the stigma surrounding mental illness.
So, let’s learn more about her!
Please, tell us a little about yourself.
I am Amanda Green, author of ‘My Alien Self – My Journey Back To Me’, my memoir of my journey through travel, excitement, normality and mental illness to find myself again. I want to inspire others that it is possible to recover and have a life worth living. Because I grew up with my mother having severe Schizophrenia, who had been incarcerated in psychiatric hospitals for years, and felt the bullying and loneliness that stigma can spread, I campaign to stop the stigma surrounding mental illness. I also felt the wrath of stigma when I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality disorder. Many people do not understand mental illness, so judge people unfairly. So I created www.amandagreenauthor.co.uk where I publish articles on the topics covered in my story, including self help, depression, bankruptcy, Alcohol/drug abuse, family and relationships, sexual, physical and mental abuse, anxiety, anger, Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), self harm, Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), Anorexia Nervosa/Bulimia, mindfulness, panic, rape, Schizophrenia, pychosis, Suicidal thoughts, , paranoia, dissociation, mood disorder, thyroid issues and psychology.
I love photography, writing and looking after my many websites, and have had my work published in magazines. I enjoy the challenge of getting published and very much enjoy doing my own PR, which is why I chose to self publish to kindle in this first instance.
I will be working with mental health charities, magazines, newspapers, social networking and other PR projects, actively making people aware of this disorder through every means possible through the media. But also, I hope that my book will help other sufferers and their families and friends to understand BPD and mental health and how to help oneself to feel better. I want to raise awareness to the general public about mental illness and the stigma sufferers have to deal with. I am going to continue writing through fact and fiction storytelling, on the genre of Mental Health and love stories – facing and combating adversity as the main point. (not self help books, but based on reality)
I hope that Doctors and the medical industry involved with mental health will benefit from reading my story, as it unfolds what it is like to suffer from debilitating mental illness from the inside out and how it manifests itself.
But I have also written this book in an autobiographical, yet novel style, in the hope that this will be a compelling and sometimes shocking read for anyone interested in memoirs with a twist, so that I can reach more people.
I really hope to encourage more celebrities to come out about BPD or other mental illnesses.
Outside of work, I love eating out and reviewing restaurants, travel, days out, campaigning for the precious Orang-utan and the issues of unsustainable palm oil production, running six websites of my own and seeing my family. I also enjoy reading, theatre, films, TV and cooking and when I can calm my mind down, just relaxing!
How long have you been writing?
Since I was very young – I loved writing short stories and rhyming poems. Then, when I was fourteen I began writing in depth diaries/journals.
Do you remember the first story you wrote?
I am not sure if it was my first story, but when I was nine I wrote a story about a scary house in the middle of a forest. It was in first person and I was trying to get inside the house yet I was very frightened.
Can you tell us two eccentricities about yourselves?
Mmm, well, I like to behave child like every so often. It just comes to me. I think it stops me from getting stressed – mucking about and joking and dancing around. It’s fun! And I think my mental illness has made me very eccentric at times – particularly OCD traits.
What was the best thing you’ve ever heard (or read) from a reader?
A few people, actually, have written reviews for my memoir or tweeted me, to tell me how much my book helped them to understand their mental illness, made them feel less alone, gave them hope and inspired them that they can recover. I also felt humbled by a comment from a psychiatric nurse who told me that I had given her a lot of food for thought regarding her patients and that she was now using the information and hints given in my book to further understand and empathize with her patients.
Do you have a good Indie author to recommend?
Yes, Terry Tyler (@TerryTyler4) – she writes novels and is becoming very popular. She also encouraged me to do my five day free promotion, which I did as part of my anti-stigma campaign. 1200 people downloaded my book in five days so I was really pleased to have spread the word.
Who inspired and/or supported you to become a writer?
I inspired myself mainly, as I had started writing my story more fully in 2006. However, when I was in the depths of my mental illness, I read ‘Get me out of here’ by Rachel Reiland and ‘Buddha and Borderline’ by Kiera Van Gelder and they helped me so much – I felt less alone with my illness and they helped me to gain some insights and ideas for getting better. I then felt that my story could maybe help others in the same way and, in the years to come, if I could get better by writing it (cathartic approach) it would be even better. And, luckily, it worked!
Do you have a WIP (Working in progress)? If so, can you tell us a little about it?
Not exactly… But, I am journaling my life still – my progress with college, moving on, logging my mental health symptoms (negative and positive), writing articles for my website on mental health. It may well be that I use these, plus further writing to put together a follow up book to ‘My Alien Self: My Journey Back to Me’. Like a ‘life after mental illness’.
Do you like to interact online? What’s your favorite social media?
Oh yes I love it! I especially like Twitter where I chat to like minded people, find out new information, can promote my book, can help inspire others with mental illness and I can retweet things of interest.
I also like face book where I am a little more personal, sharing photos, petitions, campaigns, chat with friends through messaging, join a few private groups of interest, share posts from my website and news about my book, and ‘like’ and share other people inspirational quotes, stories or jokes.
I am also registered to and use writing websites, such as Goodreads and Authonomy, as outlined below.
How do you feel about marketing your books?
I love marketing my book as I have a long background of self marketing. It gives me confidence when I know I am reaching people through my own efforts and I tend to be fairly creative with my plans and actions.
Please, give us all your links – where can your readers find you and your books?
My profile and book on Authonomy http://authonomy.com/writing-community/profile/0d1a1426-08a7-4f2f-b9b6-b6bf1ff19d8c/amanda-green-author-uk/
My book on Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/My-Alien-Self-Journey-ebook/dp/B0087HBUWU/ref=pd_rhf_ee_p_t_1
My author profile on Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Amanda-Green/e/B0087O89QS/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1
My book on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/My-Alien-Self-Journey-ebook/dp/B0087HBUWU/ref=la_B0087O89QS_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1349524223&sr=1-1
My author profile on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Amanda-Green/e/B0087O89QS/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_2
My profile and book on Goodreads http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6525174.Amanda_Green
My book on Kindle Amazon where my readers leave notes and comments on my memoir https://kindle.amazon.com/work/my-alien-self-journey-ebook/B0087O8A12/B0087HBUWU
My website www.amandagreenauthor.co.uk
On my website/blog I write articles on:
- Mental illness – information, coping skills and sharing my own experiences of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), OCD, depression, anxiety and my mums schizophrenia
- Book reviews of other books
- Information and snippets from my own memoir
- My mental health and anti-stigma campaign
- Being a writer and self publishing
Cover ‘Designed by Stuart Bache’ – www.stuartbache.co.uk
Edited by Debz Hobbs-Wyatt – www.debzhobbs-wyatt.co.uk
Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions, Amanda! It was truly a pleasure to have you here. What you have to say is absolutely important, and I hope I’ve helped to spread the word about your campaign today.
And readers, don’t go anywhere! Stay tuned for next interview.
- If you’re an author and want to be in my spotlight, contact me!