Wednesday, July 1, 2020

New book! The Wine O'Clock Myth.

My new book came out two weeks ago! What a crazy couple of weeks it has been doing lots of media and a wee book launch event. The book is called 'The Wine O'Clock Myth: The truth you need to know about women and alcohol' and it is a thorough exploration about the situation we're in with regards to our alcohol soaked societies, the normalisation and glorification of booze that goes on left, right and centre, the manipulation that goes on through marketing, the targeting of women (especially on social media), and the many ways that all of this is impacting on women's lives.

Happy to say the whole 'launching a new book into the world' process went very well. Aside from a few emotional bumps along the way everything has been great. I expected a bit of push-back from some quarters from people who might think me a 'wowser' or like I was being preachy or judgemental, but I seem to have escaped that criticism (so far).. which is good because I work very hard to not come across as any of those things!

It's such a strange process putting out a book. You feel very vulnerable and nervous, but also proud and excited. I was swamped with lovely messages via social media and through my email and text messages etc.. lots and lots of contacts and friends and family reaching out to say 'well done'. Everything is noisy and stimulating, busy and heady. And now... quiet.

Two weeks on from the launch and the book is now just another book on the shelf and out there in people's homes being read and absorbed and having a life of it's own. Meanwhile my life is getting back to normal. I've been through this a few times before so I know to stop Googling my name to see if anyone has written anything and not to look at Goodreads or Amazon for what reviews might be posted (it takes just one 2-star review to ruin a day).

Instead I am returning to my usual routines of working on Living Sober, doing workshops, dog walking, puzzling (have become very keen on doing jigsaw puzzles!), podcast listening, housework, cooking, parenting (which mostly involves being a taxi driver and money machine nowadays), drinking many cups of tea, watching tele in my comfy pants blah blah blah you get the gist. Being a sober housewife and mum in the suburbs ticking away at life.

Embracing all that comes along with a clear head and honest intention. Not seeking to numb and avoid my emotions (other than the odd sugar binge), not seeking to avoid anything real that is going on.. just facing up every day to life... warts and all. 

Bloody hell it's good. It is so good being out of the boozy trap that I was once in, where all I did was guzzle wine daily to deal with life and my emotions. What an incredible ride I have been on in the past 8 1/2 years to get to this point today. Forget writing books and the shift in my career.. simply on a deep internal level my life has changed so hugely and for that I am extremely grateful.

But back to the book. The Wine O'Clock Myth is something I am really, really proud of. It takes all that I have learned and witnessed and heard about over the past 8 years and put it in one place. It also takes in 20 incredible in-depth stories from women sharing the truth about their relationships with alcohol. Not the lies and distorted view that we are so often fed through the media.. the truth. These stories are incredibly heart-warming and inspiring and also, at times, heartbreaking in their brutal honesty. The book is worth reading for these tales alone (sales pitch!) but also for the research and journalism I put into the chapters that I wrote.

Hard copies are available here via Mighty Ape (NZ & Australia only for now) or Kindle here. Hard copies are available over in the US and UK etc in October.. otherwise it's eBooks only for those far-flung countries for now. It'll also be available via audio book later in the year.

No more book writing for now! Until the next idea hits that is. Ha ha. In the meantime it must be time for a cup of tea. 

Love, Mrs D xxx

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Hi friends!

Oh my golly, golly goodness it has been a loooong time since I wrote here on my lovely original blog. But I never forget about you!

I've got a new job facilitating addiction workshops and as part of the day I have to tell my personal story. I stand up and relive my last drinking days and the lead up to quitting.. then I talk about this place, how I started writing to myself daily right after I quit and how powerful and awesome that process was. I talk about how a community of support built up around my blog and every comment (especially in the early days) felt like a hug.

This blog was my lifeline, my support blanket, my safe resting place, my powerful outlet. It was my everything for so long.

Now I am still writing and posting about sobriety and recovery daily, but my focus has shifted away from this site and to Living Sober and my social media accounts. But this site is still live hence me popping back here to say hi!

Sill experiencing a bit of anxiety as I wrote about in my last post. Not sure what this is about.. maybe because I've got some tricky stuff going down with some relationships in my personal life (not Mr D no way!), maybe because I'm heading into menopause, maybe because I'm running a busy household & raising 3 sons, maybe because I'm working two part-time jobs, or maybe because I'm about to release my 3rd book which I'm a bit nervous about (getting feisty about the priviledged position alcohol holds in our society and the impact it's having on women)... or maybe all of the above!

Whatever the cause, I am dealing with the anxiety and all the other emotions that come my way with the tools I have developed over 8+ years of being sober. And for that I am extremely grateful.

I love having alcohol out of my life. I love, love, love it. I never want to go back to where I was, locked in a booze habit that was habitual and heavy and deadening. If somebody said I could magically one day be able to moderate – I still wouldn’t choose to chuck that carcinogenic shit down my throat.

What I have gained from getting sober and living every single moment of every single day with a wide open brain is immense. Only because I live with my raw emotions, reactions and feelings 100% of the time have I been required to develop coping mechanisms that are grounding and healing and lovely. And for that I am grateful.

Every hard day that I have slumped around feeling glum, every sad day that my tears have fallen, every angry day when my fists have been clenched, every boring day when I’ve been crying out to create some fun, every tricky day when I’ve been gritting my teeth desperate to escape (but haven’t), every single day that I have lived sober has been a gift. A goddam gift I tell you.

If I go back to my early posts on here and read about all the hard work I had to do in those tough-as-hell early days to learn how to not drink.. I just feel so proud and grateful to the me back then who did that.

It was so worth all the blood, sweat and tears. So worth it. I have ZERO regrets.

Love, Mrs D xxx