This is an exciting time for us, and we wanted to share some of that energy with you.
This Saturday, Fran is moving from her beloved Peaks Island to the mainland, specifically Portland, Maine. Finding an apartment and preparing for the move has been a struggle emotionally, and yet it has happened effortlessly, with great help from friends. Her new apartment is lovely and spacious, twice as big as the cottage. It will be quite a transformation from island girl to city girl, after ten years on Peaks, but Fran is up for the challenge. Portland is blessed with restaurants, arts, music, theater, and parks, and she will be able to visit Peaks Island as much as she likes.
Writing and editing
In recent weeks we have completed rewriting the Introduction, chapter 5 (renamed as "A hand to hold") and chapter 7 ("The S word"). The rewrite of chapter 2 ("The way of illness") is underway and on target to complete this week. Next up is a rewrite of chapter 1 ("The measure of us"), after which we will start work on chapter 6 ("High tide, low tide") focusing in on mania and depression.
Taking things forward
It is too early to reveal any details but we have passed sample chapters to two people with hands on, professional experience of working in the mental health arena. Initial reaction has been very positive and we look forward to working with them and others to refine the content and approach of our book to make sure it is as relevant as possible to others.
Time to Change
The UK based mental health campaign Time To Change (run by MIND and Rethink Mental Illness) were recently looking for people to feature in their next tv campaign. We applied (fun but scary!) but haven't been shortlisted, so it will be a while yet before you get to see us on your tv screens! No experience is ever wasted, though. Putting our application letter together helped us to focus on what is really important, which is to add our voices and energy to those working to end stigma and fear surrounding mental illness. Marty has this week registered an interest in becoming a Time To Change "Champion" (anyone now humming the theme tune to "Champion the Wonder Horse", please keep it to yourself!) No clear idea yet where this might lead, so keep an eye out for updates.