This week has been a strange week in a way. I have found myself beating myself up about self publishing NOBODY TOLD ME. The hard work is done, or so I thought. The pain of reliving horrible events and times in my life was not easy but I knew I had to do that, again as I did in my first book I DID TELL I DID. This second book is, in my mind, a necessary book. As a Psychotherapist, I know only too well how many of my clients come into therapy after being offered only antidepressants as treatment, after seeing their GP. Not happy to go down that road, they come to me. I believe that antidepressants have a place but most causes of anxiety, depression, grief or conditions such as PTSD can be helped so much more by talking therapies. This treatment gives the client strategies and techniques to prevent relapse of their symptoms and can be lasting. Antidepressants, on their own, don’t always do this. As back when I was 15, doctors are still too ready to prescribe this medication. The use of antidepressants has risen around 500% over the past 6 years in the UK alone.. Horrific statistics.
So the reason for my beating myself up and being frustrated is this. I have sold only a few of NOBODY TOLD ME simply because it is not available except from Amazon. Out of those few I have 15 Five Star excellent reviews! How good is that! Some readers don’t buy from Amazon and the major group of readers who bought and read I DID TELL, picked it up from the High Street. Saw the photo on the front, picked it up, liked the title and read the blurb and bought it. That is how most people buy books. NOBODY TOLD ME needs to be ‘out there’ on the High Street. So I am currently seeking a publisher brave enough to take a chance on my second book. My track record may be singular but it is excellent. I wrote I DID TELL, sent it off to Harper Collins. After 2 phone messages left on my answer phone , the same day they signed me up and the rest is history. Number One in the charts in it’s first week, stayed for a few months and is still selling almost 5 years on. It has sold over 96.5000 copies so I know my second book would do the same.
My second book as most of you know, focuses on how prescribed medications affected my life. I know, because I now know who I really am, that I would not have made the mistakes I made, followed the paths I followed or married the men I married if I had not been on this medication that stole the real me away. My sense of reason and judgment was impaired by this medications. Benzo fog was what it was called long after I was unwittingly dependent on these drugs.
So any publisher reading this PLEASE SIGN ME UP!!
I have enclosed in inverted commas, two reviews from Amazon.
“Having previously read, I did Tell by this author, I was intrigued to read this follow-up, which explores the link between past issues and abuse with metal health issues. Cassie, shares her personal plight in order to explore this connection and how telling but not having anyone to actually hear her but to deal with the situation only through their own judgmental position, caused her further harm. The doctor’s that she saw, barely gave eye contact, let alone see the damaged individual at the other side of their desk.
Instead they wrote prescription after prescription to dull her feelings and put her in a bauble that lead to a further painful battle against addiction and withdrawal from prescribed medication.
Her story is inspiring and what motivates her pen to paper is her desire to prevent others from the same fate, so much so that she is a qualified therapist herself. I too, feel her frustrations having undertaken counselling training and struggling to find paid work, while the NHS battles it’s own standing in society with counselling still being reserved for those that can pay.
Cassie paid dearly to share this story and I hope that it continues to motivate and eventually provokes changes in our system that recognise the true value of therapy. I have huge respect for this brave and determined author.”
“After reading her first book ‘I did tell, I did’ I bought this one straight away.
Such an inspirational and very harrowing read. Cassie has gone through so much and is brutally honest throughout everything.
As someone who has taken anti depressant medication for years I was very intrigued about this side of the book. It’s shocking and eye opening how doctors were so readily prescribing these tablets.
I cried throughout this book and thoroughly encourage others to read it. Inspirational”
Now to my disappointment. Whilst doing the edits for my publisher under my own name, a great deal of the content of my manuscript was left out with the ‘promise’ of another book later. See how I DID TELL sells and then do a follow on. I did this, I DID TELL sold very well and then nothing. The publisher didn’t take it on. No reason given just didn’t take it. I am in the process of trying to find out why. Perhaps the subject is too controversial. BUT LIFE IS CONTROVERSIAL. Child abuse is controversial. Prescribing antidepressants too easily and too often is controversial but it happens! As much, if not more now that when my book is written. So first disappointment.
My agent wrote to me after refusing to take the book many times, that he would publish it under his own company. But then nothing happened. Same reason perhaps. We can’t only read about ‘safe’ topics. Real life can sometimes sit uncomfortably with some people but that doesn’t make it wrong and it certainly doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen! So my second disappointment.
But then a happy surprise. In my second book NOBODY TOLD ME. I tell of the salvation, the reason I had the courage and found the strength to come off this evil medication. Maybe not the reason but the encouragement that gave me self belief. I watched a program called THATS’ LIFE presented by Esther Ranzten (she wasn’t Dame Esther then). She spoke as if only to me. She described some of the symptoms I had, during the dependency and the withdrawal. I watched while she talked, with something close to joy. It was as if she had turned the lights on for me. I wasn’t alone. She was convinced that people dependent on Benzodiazopine medication could break free. I had tried so many times, thought the withdrawal I was suffering was only happening to me, as my GP told me. So many times I was told that there was no such thing as withdrawal from this medication. That people didn’t become dependent on them. That it was ‘just’ me, that I wasn’t a coper. She told of how there was help in the form of a booklet etc through her program and encouraged people, Me to write in and not to give up. Saying ‘You can do it”. I believed I her, I was excited and sent for the pack. That was my lifeline, that was my salvation. So in a way Esther Ranzten saved my life or at least my sanity.
I wrote to her, via her agent, just to say thank you and sent a copy of the book. This was just after Christmas and wasn’t sure when or if,she had received it. Yesterday I received a hand written letter from Dame Esther. She congratulated me on my ‘heroic story,’ saying I had ‘such resilience, courage and talent’. She will never know how that handwritten letter has made me feel. Yes I began frustrated. Yes I talked about being disappointed. But. Today I have rediscovered the kindness of people and have realised that my faith in human nature has been restored, Thank you Esther, I so needed this.
Another positive is in the ‘shape’ of another survivor, another writer whom I mentioned last week, Cynthia Owen, whose book ‘Living with Evil’ was possibly one of the most heartbreaking I have ever read. With everything she has gone through and suffered, she is doing her utmost to help me find a publisher. So thank you Cynthia, you are one the best.
My third book THE FACE BEHIND THE SCREEN, I may already have a publisher for but won’t commit until I have made NOBODY more available to readers. The Jade Wood story will be told next year I hope but isn’t the priority here. She , like my abusers, has stolen enough of my time for now. I am still writing it but as I said, it is not the priority now.
I hope your weekend was good and that next week brings you everything good that it can. By for now. xx