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Self-publishing The Dementia Diaries

I just wanted to talk a little more about writing. I completed a 7 day book writing challenge with publishing.com which was to show me all the different stages and to force myself to complete them all in a week. So I chose a book I knew I could write in that time. A non technical 100 page book called 'The Dementia Diaries' - which describes my mother's journey through dementia. I've talked in the last blog how choosing the write subject area is vitally important. But for a short book, you just have to have something you are interested in so that you can write it yourself. Quality is still a key ingredient - you don't do it slapdash. But the research is narrowed down.


Well my mum passed on in April 2021 and her gradual decline was an extraordinary experience; it was very difficult for all of us as she began to show signs probably about six years prior to her death.


I wanted to show how a family deals with the situation of a relative who's got dementia. What I learned through that experience I've now distilled into a book I've subtitled:'Lessons in Letting Go Gracefully: A Daughter's tale' because it's primarily from my position as well as hers.


I wanted to show people that dementia doesn't have to be something that you are can be afraid of - you can make it a lot easier when you aren't so afraid of the condition. We found various strategies which I will talk about in the next blog.


I've created the book in nine lessons - all the things that we learned as we went through the journey with her - and not just sort of practical things like the ones I've talked about but some of the more sort of spiritual component: the friendships the meaning-making, etc


I began it with a diary I found of hers from 2015; the year she was still independent but you could start to see the decline and as we chart the next six years I sort of show you other extracts from her Diaries and include and an interview with her.


It's a short book of 100 Pages roughly - see the link below it's available on Amazon now and I'm hoping to do an audiobook version in the not too distant future although that depends on sales.


First thing was to get the copywriting and layout right. In the past you could only do that via Word or some expensive professional programme. Now we have Reedsy - an absolutely marvellous free programme for professional layout of your book (best with non-fiction).

This will make a very decent job of the layout and output as a pdf (for the print version) and an epub for the kindle ebook version. I've included the link below.


Then it was design the cover which I did using a template from kdp and very helpful video on Youtube using Canva.com. Finally it's uploading all of that with the keywords and description formatted correctly. I'll talk about that in another blog. phew! It's done. It needed proof reading (I thought I'd found all the errors but you can't proof-read your own book - luckily my partner Jill is a dab hand - ex English teacher and PhD supervisor!!)


It's available on amazon for £5.99/$6.79 on kindle (you don't need a kindle machine) and the look inside feature will also give you the chance to try before you buy. And if you enjoy it please leave me a review! Reviews are gold dust as far as sales go..



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