That’s been me the last few months, between completing work for the University of Wollongong, work with Alzheimer’s Australia, and then writing a book. Some of you already have heard via twitter or Facebook I finally submitted my manuscript for my first book about dementia at 2pm last Friday. I felt emotionally and physically drained afterwards, as if I had been run over by a truck. Then at about 5pm, I realised there was one chapter I had not inserted in the final draft I had sent to Jessica Kingsley Publishers in London… Bloody hell was all I could say!
Why this happened is I had written each individual chapter as a word document because when I had begun writing this book I found trying to work with too many pages totally unmanageable. It was easier for me to do it that way, especially bas writing one article (or chapter) was not too daunting, whereas writing a whole book is terrifying and daunting. So I had spent a few days editing and collating all of the chapters, pushed send, then realised I had forgotten a really important. A quick tweet to Jessica and Rachel at JKP, who said no stress, send it over the weekend. Phew!
Of course, as this weekend has panned out, I went back into ‘writing and thinking’ mode, and have added more than one chapter, and edited a lot of sections. It obviously needed the editing, and I ope the extra topics make it a more complete book. I’ve still left a few out, such as the changes to intimacy and sexuality of people with dementia, which I’ve only ever seen or heard spoken about by family carers and professionals. It remains hard for me to imagine how they really could know what it’s like for us, without asking us.
Anyway, draft number … well, over 250 drafts since I collated off of the chapters … is finally in, submitted as FINAL 7! I’ve had to send it to a few colleagues and friends who will hopefully like it enough to honour me by writing a Foreword each… I’m very relieved feedback so far has been very positive. I have had a dream to write a book since my early teens, and am rather happy to say, that one is now ticked off the bucket list!
The challenge now, will be to stop, as already, I have started to plan and visualise at least three more books, as many of the topics in this one I have skimmed over, and they need a much deeper exploration. Topics such as sexuality, and BPSD, and the children of younger onset dementia deserve far more time and research, but something for me to keep busy with that’s for sure.
The following is a list of about half of the chapter headings; as I did not insert a Table of Contents into the final draft, and have not made the effort to count how many chapter there are, and there well are over 85,000 words, I have no idea how many more there are! Shibley Rahman can probably help me with that!!! xox
There will be Forewords by Dr Shibley Rahman and three others, who I will confirm once they have read and agreed to do them, plus the book begins with a Prologue or Introduction before the chapters, and I have also written a poem to precede most chapters.
- My diagnosis (still waiting on Dr Casse!)
- Younger onset dementia (YOD)
- The impact on children of YOD
- Early vs delayed diagnosis
- Why me, why this, why now?
- The early days
- Thank you Richard Taylor
- The impact of younger onset dementia
- Myths of dementia
- Prescribed Disengagement
- Dementia as a disAbility
- Stigma and dementia
- Language and dementia
- Human rights in aged and dementia care
- Driving and dementia