Paperback Writer welcomes Vivian Eisenecher, author of the how to book, Recovering Me, Discovering Joy: Uplifting Wisdom for Everyday Greatness (KTW Publishing, Nov. ’08), as she virtually tours the blogosphere in January on her first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book Promotion
Leave a Comment win a Prize:
As a special promotion for all our authors, Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour to a published author or a $50 Amazon gift certificate to those not published who comments on our authors’ blog stops. More prizes will be announced as they become available.
Recovering Me, Discovering Joy is for anyone who has ever had to forge ahead after a negative life event. If you have ever had to bounce back from a failed relationship, convalesce from an illness, recoup any kind of loss, or just recover from a bad day, then this book will be beneficial. It will help you with your recoveries, and it will help you move on to live a richer, easier and happier life.
Recovering Me, Discovering Joy takes a good honest look at how I, my husband and countless others have used recovery not as a disadvantage, but as an opportunity and springboard to an improved life. We learned that it’s not about recovering to normal – it’s about recovering to a better normal…from anything.
This book is about my transformation from a depressed, anxiety-laden alcoholic to a successful, grateful and joyful woman. For me, it took my total collapse and complete failure to finally understand that I wasn’t just battling alcoholism, I was fighting two other distinct disorders as well. Believe it or not, this realization paved the way for me to finally enjoy life. Until then, my life had been a struggle, an uphill climb within the grim-looking landscape of my mind. My newfound love for life was such a complete turnaround that, to benefit others, I wanted to commit to paper pivotal parts of my journey. It took the diagnosis and successful treatment of not only alcoholism but also my chronic low-grade depression, called dysthymia, and my social phobia or S.A.D. (Social Anxiety Disorder) for me to recognize that these two lifelong disorders were ‘triggers’ for my alcoholism. They were the ugly underbelly of the beast. Substance abuse was a mere symptom of two underlying disorders that were not discernible to anyone, not even me.
All my life, I had wondered why everything seemed so hopeless, why my life seemed so meaningless, and why I was unable to experience any real joy. Along with that, I had a deep, lifelong fear of encountering people who I deemed ‘better’ than me (anyone with more money, better educated, etc.). Even though I had never known anything different, somehow I knew the way I felt wasn’t right. I had no idea that I was depressed and anxiety-ridden until I was curiously (and serendipitously) treated for both conditions.
Welcome to Paperback Writer.
PBW: Would you share with us how you came up with the idea for your book?
VE: I had an incredible life transformation and I wanted to give other alcoholics a chance for a better life, too. I had suffered from dysthymia (a chronic low-grade depression) and social anxiety most of my life and it compromised my goals, my habits, and my attitude which severely impacted my life. These ailments developed into full blown alcoholism and it took months in various rehabs for me to realize that I suffered from co-occurring, diagnosable and treatable illnesses. It took the sudden clarity of thought in recovery for me to realize that I had a tremendous amount of experience to share. And I knew others would benefit from my discernment.
PBW:Was it a light bulb moment or something that you thought about for a very long time?
VE: I thought about it for a very long time because I had to make sure I could explain to others what happened to me in a way that would make sense. In rehab, it was suggested that we journal and I’ve always loved words. I started reading and researching and found my experiences validated by everything I read.
PBW: How did you come up with the title?
VE: For the longest time the title was going to be: All I Really Needed to Know I Learned in Recovery. But as I continued to write, joy had become such a big part of my life that I felt it was important to include it in the title. Also, as I worked on the book, it became more and more evident that there were really two parts. 1) about my recovery from anxiety, depression and alcoholism and 2) about how I’d found a much better way to live.
PBW: How did you find an agent and publisher?
VE: I searched for both an agent and a publisher and when that didn’t work out, I realized that what I had written was important enough for me to move forward and self-publish. My passion is to help reduce the stigma of substance abuse and mental illness. So, I knew I had to get my book out to the public.
PBW: Who reads you work in progress?
VE: Recovering Me, Discovering Joy is broken down into a number of different parts so it was really easy for me to take various sections to three different writers’ groups. My writing was well received and that encouraged me to keep it up.
PBW: Who made a difference in the book’s quality?
VE: Just off the top of my head, I would say that the person most responsible for improving the quality of my book was Geoff Whyte (www.whyteink.com.au). He lives in Australia but even being on the other side of the world he was a terrific find.
PBW: How long did it take you to complete the first draft?
VE: About a year. It took that long because I wasn’t exactly sure how the whole idea would shake out.
PBW: How long did it take from start to publication?
VE: About three years. I had to set it down for awhile to make sure that I was comfortable enough in my sobriety to become vulnerable to criticism.
PBW: Do you have any advice for new authors?
VE: Writing a book is a great accomplishment but an equally important part of publishing is the marketing. Be sure and save enough of your time talent and treasure to make sure that your voice is heard.
Thank you, Vivian for stopping by Paperback Writer on your virtual book tour. I wish you continued success through the rest of you tour.
RECOVERING ME, DISCOVERING JOY VIRTUAL BLOG TOUR ’09 officially began on January 5 and end on January 30. You can visit Vivian’s blog stops at www.virtualbooktours.wordpress.com in January to find out more about this talented lady!