This is a Mental Muse post. Mental Muse: The Mental Health Advocacy Meme for Authors invites writers who experience mental health issues to share their answers to five simple questions. Find them (along with more information on this meme) HERE.
This months ‘brave and bold’ is paranormal romance and urban fantasy author, Toi Thomas. Who’s next? You?
Welcome Toi Thomas, author of Paranormal Romance:
Eternal Curse: Giovanni’s Angel
1. What is your mental health issue?
My family, especially the women, have a long history of depression. Some of us have been treated for this difficulty and others of us have not. My case has been pretty mild until recently when I suffered a loss and strange feelings surfaced. I am not currently under treatment and will probably not seek any at this time as I am slowly regaining a grip on my life, but I am in no way opposed to treatment. If it becomes necessary, I will seek it and my hesitant family will be supportive.
2. How long have you been writing fiction? Tell us about your career so far.
I’ve been writing since 2009. My career has been a slow progression. Because I did not set out to become a writer, I’ve have to figure some things out along the way. Since I started writing I also picked up blogging about four years ago. I currently have three independent short publications, one hybrid published novel that I’m currently trying to promote, and a daily writing and entertainment blog.
3. How has mental ill health helped your writing?
Knowing that I have emotional struggles happening within me constantly, it’s not difficult to pull from those feelings when writing emotional or intense content. Even though my writing focuses on being entertaining and are mostly works of fiction, I find it to be very therapeutic. There is so much of me in my writing, I couldn’t deny my work even if I wanted to.
4. And how has it not?
Depression is a problem mainly because it doesn’t always make sense. It becomes a little scary when it does. When you have all the hopes and dreams of a writer but you’re still working a day job, while writing, it can intensify your depression.
5. What advice do you have for other writers with mental health issues.
I don’t know if I call this advice, but I can tell what helps me and try to relate it to others.
1-Not everyone has a belief system to which they live by, but if you do, I’d say dive into it. I’m able to work out a lot of my issues by having faith and praying. Prayer isn’t magic, but if you’re willing to take steps to better your situation, prayer will give you strength to keep trying when it gets hard.
2-Now for everyone (with or without a belief system) I’d say that writing and or talking about your situation, your issues, and your triggers will help you learn to cope better and recover faster when those unexpected and sudden breakdowns show up for no reason.
3-This may sound way more spiritual than it actually is, but I count my blessings. You could call it counting the good stuff or bullet pointing the bright side. When I’m going through or having an episode it is nearly impossible to think of anything good, but that’s when I go back and look at what I’ve already added to my list. Adding to the list during a time of peace and calm keeps me in those moments longer and reading the list in the midst of a breakdown has helped me to get back on track.
Eternal Curse: Giovanni’s Angel
(The Eternal Curse Series Book One)
Curses can be broken?
“You have plenty of time to change your mind. You have not yet seen the monster I can be.”
Giovanni has been waiting his whole life to meet someone like Mira, someone from the outside world who might be able to help him. He wonders if there really is help for him as he continues to hold tightly onto dark secrets and even darker memories. Giovanni wants to be hopeful and he wants to accept Mira’s help, but first he has to look himself in the mirror and face what he truly is- and that is a reality no one is quite ready to accept.
Searching fornew purpose and meaning in her life, Mira meets Giovanni online and an exciting and, in some ways, scary friendship is developed. Mira decides one day to meet Giovanni in person, at his secluded country home, in order to aid him on his journey of self-discovery. What these two are able to discover will not only test their strength and will, but it will stretch the limits of their minds and catapult them into a world where earth, Heaven, and Hell collide.
Eternal Curse is the story of a man who may just be the answer to a spiritual war swiftly heading his way- but for now, he just wants to be a man.
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Spiritual Urban Fantasy
Toi Thomas Short Bio:
A self-proclaimed techie and foodie, Toi Thomas was born in Texas, but considers Virginia to be home. She enjoys reading, cooking, baking, painting, collecting vinyl records, and spending time with her family. Currently working as a special education teacher’s assistant while blogging and writing fulltime, Toi finds comfort and peace of mind in chocolate, green tea, and naps. For some reason, Toi admits has escaped her, she married a frat boy who has continued to be her best friend and love of her life. She and her husband are now embarking on the adventure that is book promotion with the release of her first novel, Eternal Curse: Giovanni’s Angel.
Sponsored by TheAuthorShow.com, Toi was named one of their, 2013,
If you are an author who experiences mental health issues who would like to share how this impacts you professionally, then please download The Mental Muse questions and instructions by clicking this link.
Because, like Socrates said: “The unexamined life is not worth living.”
Get your answers back to me, edited and in good order, and supply the actual links, not embedded links.
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