2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 47,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 17 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Shin Splints, Shits and Success

another medal for moosey

another medal for moosey

 

I can now hang up my running vest, consign the running shoes to the bin and retire gracefully from the running malarkey that has consumed my life for the past few weeks.

Or can I?

Either way I signed up for the Bupa 10k run in October in one of my hyper moods and today I achieved my only target which was to finish the race!

Struggling with shin splints I had to make 2 emergency IBS related toilet stops and a visit to St John’s Ambulance for some pain killers, which made a big difference to my finishing time, but the time taken was irrelevant what mattered was that I finished! There were around 12000 runners and I finished in the top 10000!

buparesult

I also raised over £500 for Mind which I know they will be so appreciative off so a massive thank you to those who kindly sponsored me, especially as I know that money is very tight for a lot of people. The support some of you show me is nothing short of inspiring and I am very humbled by the words of encouragement and praise that people shower on me!

Onward and upwards to the next challenge, I fancy a sky dive next time around. At least that will only hurt when I hit the ground as opposed to every step but who knows this running bug may drive me on to something more next year…

If you wish to sponsor me you can still do so via http://www.justgiving.com/garrywilliams

As for me, I am going to allow myself to feel incredible pride at another achievement Moosey has done since having depression. See you at the start line next year?

SuperMoose

I did it!! I did it!

I completed my 5k superhero run(walk) today!

Despite the stresses of the last week I actually got myself up and out the door at the crack of a sparrows fart and headed to Regents Park to meet my running buddy Gary – a fellow wordpress blogger who writes here

We arrived early eager to get our hands on the superhero costumes and changed into possibly the most unlikely superhero duo since Del Boy and Rodney!

the streets of London were safe for another day!

the streets of London were safe for another day!

There was a mass warm up for the 1700+ superheros and the first song that was used was….

so whilst everyone was dancing around the field Gary and I continued our pre run ritual of a cigarette and left them too it. It was hard enough coping with the poxy moose head smacking me in the nose every time I moved around.

At the start line I took off like a bullet from a gun (in my head at least!) and within 1k the pain kicked in like someone was running alongside me with scissors but I carried on moaning my way round the course until finally the finish line was in sight and I raised my arms wearily aloft as I crossed it in a new personal best time of 36 minutes!

After hitting the floor and finally being able to take off the moose head I was able to fully recognise what I had achieved. Five Km doesnt seem a big distance to lots of people but for me it is a huge goal I reached and hopefully next weeks 10 Km run in London wont seem so daunting now – depending on how my knees feel in the morning!

Thank you to wonderful people who have donated money for Mind, a wonderful charity. I even managed to meet the Big Cheese of Mind Paul Farmer today. The Moose did a great job networking.

Moose with his medal!

Moose with his medal!

Book Sales Review

I am pleased to announce that Diary of The Depressed Moose 2 is now available on Kindle and paperback formats through Amazon, taken my total books published in 2012 to 3!

Bare in mind that in reality its only been since August that I published them so I am very proud of myself to have accomplished this in 4 months.

Now I am going to turn around for a huge pat on the back from you lot!

And while your in a good mood may I ask a favour? no? tough I am going to anyway.

You can visit my “Authors” page on Amazon here where all my books are listed. I would be most grateful if you could click on the books and click like for each one.

So back to sales on Amazon

On kindle I have sold a total of 52 copies of my books – 8 in the USA and 44 in the UK

In Paperback format I have sold a total of 61 copies 1 in Europe, 15 in the USA and 45 in the UK

so a grand total of 113 books have been sold on Amazon

I can look back on this year with a feeling of pride! I have come a long way since the dark days at the start of 2012 and although the war is still not over I have won more battles than I have lost!

Roll on 2013!

Six Months is a Long Time

This weekend marks 6 months since I hit rock bottom see here for details of how low. Whilst I do not want to keep bringing up what is now known as “the window incident” I can look back with an overwhelming sense of pride and achievement at how far I have come in that time.

It got to the point where my life could have ended but with the help of good friends, spirits looking over me and a new relationship with Jesus I have been on a steady incline since that day, despite the highs and lows of the past 6 months I have never again been as bad as I was before.

So lets look back at how far I have come because it is important with an illness like depression to celebrate the steps made in recovery.

  1. Started this blog in June – yep still only a newbie in the blogging world it feels like a lot longer but I’m still learning bits and pieces and (hopefully) improving as a writer!
  2. Published 2 books on mental health illnesses – now I am not sure if I have mentioned my books before but what the hell it’s a bloody good achievement despite my doom and gloom over the sales, The fact is (including around 35 free copies) I have sold 90 books! holy crap 90 books! Thats in paperback and ebook formats
  3. ok this has to be said again 90 books!
  4. I am helping people – I have received numerous messages from people who have read my blog telling me how they have been either inspired or helped by what they have read! Complete strangers have reached out to me! The sense of pride I feel when people contact me is unbelievable.
  5. I am raising money for charity with the poetry book. If I raise only £10 then it is still an achievement.
  6. I am making new friends on wordpress, twitter and facebook and becoming “known” for my blog.
  7. I am raising awareness about depression and getting people educated in the process.
  8. 90 books! seriously that’s blown me away 10 away from 3 figures I am gonna have to find a way to celebrate, maybe a signed copy or two as a competition LOL
  9. My marriage has never been better since I sought help about my depression. I see couples breaking up over mental health illnesses and a reluctance to talk about it. I am hoping to break down some barriers about the importance for men in particular to seek help and open up.
  10. I feel like my kids, and step sons are proud of me for having published books. More importantly I am proud of myself for being brave enough to post everything without being anonymous and holding nothing back. It gives people a face to the illness and makes them realise they are not alone.

 

as lists go this is not bad for 6 months work is it? considering if I did a list for the previous 10 years it would not be more than 1/4 long.

Heck I even managed to quit mafia wars!

So my message to you all is list your achievements, stand back and look at them and get that sense of pride you deserve for all the work you put into recovery. It’s not about how many is on the list it is all about the fact that there is something there for you to be proud off!

 

Getting Heard

Today my open letter to depression was featured on the Mind website as part of their blog http://www.mind.org.uk/blog/7248_my_letter_to_depression

The response has been wonderful, full of support and to be honest better than I ever anticipated.

It is great when something you have written speaks to so many people, or inspires them to do something.

When you feel low yourself but know that you are helping others is a great feeling. I am so incredibly proud of myself today.

Hopefully people will check out my book now as well… at smashwords you can preview the first 20% of the book before you decide to buy it https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/213574 is the link for those who asked. Have a read of it you will not regret it. You will also be contributing the new tattoo I want if you buy it :-)

And the poetry book is getting more submissions by the day I cannot wait until this gets finished and published!

Today I can look forward to what is about to happen with a sense of achievement rather than the usual doom.

My romance book has 10000 words written and the feedback from that has been remarkable.

Todays scoreboard reads Depression 0 Garry 1

 

Comes Before a Fall?

As the saying goes “pride comes before a fall” well today I respectfully disagree.

For me, my fall was a long time ago and while I may still be heading towards the ground, I can sit back today with a sense of pride at my achievements over the past five months.

This is a big deal for me because one of my biggest issues with depression is the feeling of being a failure, self loathing is one of my specialties so please allow me this luxury because it’s a massive step for me.

Five months ago I was at rock bottom and ready to throw my life away.

Since then I have done the following:

  • Admitted I needed help and got it
  • Started writing this blog.
  • Continued with the blog, this will post #111
  • Given up Mafia Wars! (I never thought that day would come)
  • Wrote and published a book
  • Sold 20 copies of book!
  • Had an idea for a book of poetry and actually following it through
  • Started writing another book
  • Found God
  • Made lots of new friends, people like Weegee and Bourbon especially from WordPress
  • Attended a training day for peer support, being in a room with complete strangers!

Read that list and weep depression!

That is not bad going in 5 months is it?

The point is that it is OK for you to look bad with a sense of pride, if only you allow yourself to see how much you have achieved.

Why not do what I have done and make a list to see what you have managed in the past year, it may surprise you and when you feel low you can look back it and remember how far you have come!

 

 

Moose Blowing his own Trumpet

Just because I can and because I am so proud of myself check out the reviews my book has had so far:

5.0 out of 5 stars Diary of the Depressed Moose

10 Aug 2012

By Kitkat
After discovering and following Garry Williams on Twitter, I was taken aback by the sheer honesty of his writings, his willingness to open up about himself and most refreshingly of all, his willingness to reveal his identity!Any of you who have read Garry Williams’ blog will know that he writes from the heart, holding nothing back and revealing things that leaves one feeling like they truly know the writer, as if he’s a friend you’ve known all your life. Having never met the man and having only known about him for a short period, this book was a remarkable insight into his life and events that led to his development of depression. The reader feels privileged to be learning in depth facts about the author and comes away from the book as if one were reading a book about an old friend.

Several times throughout the book sentences jumped out at me as being profound in their meaning and highly quotable for years to come. Knowing that I would be reviewing the book after reading it, I was looking for things to quote, things to be both positive and negative about.

Notable Quotes: far too many to be published in a review!

Positives: Extremely honest and refreshing to read, particularly as it was written by a man!

Negative: I’m sorry Garry, I found a negative! Being a Man U fan I struggled to see how Arsenal losing a match could make you feel down so that was the one part I couldn’t relate to! Joking aside, the only real negative in the book is the fact that it could leave people shouting ‘Too much information!’ at their screens. But seeing as how I’m not squeamish, it didn’t particularly affect me!

Overall, I would recommend this book for its readability, its humour and its frank honesty about a man with depression. He makes it so clear that his aim is to help others as well as himself and that it is not a sign of weakness to seek help for depression. In fact, he writes (and I wholeheartedly agree) that for men to seek help in this day and age is a sign of strength, not weakness.

Garry’s other wish is to help tackle the stigma that surrounds mental health, particularly men who are affected. This book should go a long way to doing that and it was a privilege to journey with Garry, going from the edge (literally) to his current struggles with the illness. I am looking forward to a sequel which will detail his recovery and I sincerely hope that one is in the works!

5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful 14 Aug 2012

By Nova Norris
Amazon Verified Purchase
This book journals just a few weeks in the life of Garry, a man suffering with depression. Garry talks so openly about the day to day experiences of living with this distressing and disabling condition. Garry expresses his thoughts and emotions in a clear and frank manner enabling the reader to engage and empathise. It also highlights the difficulties Garry faces to find treatment and support, whilst trying to live and support a young family.
Hopefully Garry has found writing the journal personally helpful as it allows him an outlet for all of the difficulties that he faces and gives him a focus, something he `can do’. I think it will also be so helpful for other people suffering from depression as they will know that they are not alone. Other people too will find the book helpful, in particular partners of people suffering from depression, family members and carers. It will give them an insight into the dark, desolate place that haunts those troubled with the illness. In allowing them the insight it may in turn help them to know how to help their loved one.
In my work as a psychological therapist I often recommend journal writing as it allows clients to offload, to vent, to have a focus and to discover. It is also immensely helpful to use the journal as a key tool for therapy as it allows the therapist insight into the client’s world.
I also think this book would be extremely useful for all therapists and trainee therapists in order to learn more about depression from a sufferer’s perspective rather than from the `expert’ or professional domain.
Thank you for sharing your world, Garry.
5.0 out of 5 stars So impressed. 10 Aug 2012

By Will
Amazon Verified Purchase
Everything about this book will touch anyone who’s suffered from a mental health issue. Garry puts it all out there and bears his soul within the lines. Like us all he has his bad days and good and I hope this realisation of a dream, to write a book, makes him smile with pride. Recommended.
Review by: Carla RB on Aug. 13, 2012 : star star star star star
I just finished Garry’s book “Diary of the depressed moose”. It is wonderful to follow his struggle to live with depression, research on the subject of depression and then share so many great ideas and tips on how to cope. The book goes from despair to hope right before your eyes!
(reviewed within a week of purchase)
I know its unusual for me to be so bold but seriously these are awesome! And how often am I doing “happy” posts lately LOL
All of them are written by real people not by me or any of my friends.
Spread the word people there is a new 5 star book in town!

My Bright Idea Part 2

I have had such a busy weekend promoting the book idea on twitter I didn’t really have time to write a blog about how I was feeling. Most of the time spent was done reading other blogs as I like to keep updated on how you are doing and enjoy reading.

I have completed my second bright idea and have now actually finished the first draft of my book and now I have the panic setting in with regards to formatting for kindle! It has to be done in a certain way to make it compatible for e readers and I have no clue how to do it!

I feel such an overwhelming sense of pride that I have achieved something even if no one else is interested in what I have read just knowing I put the time and effort into creating this makes me so proud.

I just need help from someone to come up with a front cover for the book who has time on the hands?

The title I have come up with is “Diary of a Man with Depression” but I guess that needs some working on as well but catchy titles escape me!

Either way I am determined to get this finished this week as I want it out there so hopefully people will start talking about depression and know that they are not alone, which is why I started this blog in the first place. People have been sending me messages saying how brave they think I am being so open about my battle but it is all for the greater good in terms of exposure.

What these people probably don’t realise is how much the messages they send mean to me and inspire me! Imagine feeling so worthless and useless as I do and suddenly a stranger has sent you an email saying things like

“You inspire others, myself included so keep yourself well!”

“I actually wanted to say thank you – your request encouraged me to publish these and other poems on kindle. You were the spur I needed.”

These are just 2 messages I have received but there are others and from the bottom of my heart thank you for supporting me in my journey!

Today I feel better than I did over the weekend, keeping myself busy is my way of ignoring the brain and it’s funny way of trying to bring me down. Focusing on the book plans I have gives me motivation to get out of bed at the moment so that’s always a good thing isn’t it!