In this space, WestBow Press publishes articles written by our authors in which they share some aspect of their self-publishing journeys. The following blog is from Andrew and Stephanie Downing, authors of “Marriage and Schizophrenia.” You can learn more about the Downings by visiting their website, blog, or Twitter. To begin your self-publishing journey, get a free WestBow Press publishing guide today
In Sickness & Health
My wife and I started writing our book titled, Marriage and Schizophrenia: Eyes on the Prize, as a creative outlet mainly for fun. We enjoyed spending quality time together crafting the story. However, our story is anything but easy to talk about. As we continued with the writing process, we experienced a wealth of healing and began the process of reclaiming our voice.
Writing has a unique power in allowing healing to take place. We found healing in our marriage through open communication and forgiveness. Slowly, we began to understand that everyone suffers on a relative level. We came to the conclusion that suffering is suffering. There is no way to measure suffering, no way to rank sorrow. Schizophrenia, and the horrors associated with the devastating illness, are perceivable high on a “misery scale.” I have lived with schizophrenia for nearly twenty years now, almost losing my life several times from illness-related complications. Healing poured into our marriage when I realized that my suffering was no worse than my spouses, or anyone’s for that matter. We both have an equal share in the miseries of earth.
Spreading Our Testimony
We decided to publish our book mainly because we felt our voice had been compromised. We felt many people had a misconception of our situation: not understanding why we were having success amidst mental illness. God is the key to our success over schizophrenia and mental health issues. God is also the reason why we have survived as a married couple. WestBow has helped us begin the journey of sharing our testimony.
We had a hard time editing and finishing our book. When we finally had a product that we were comfortable with, we had no idea where to turn. Neither my wife nor I had ever considered ourselves committed writers, and we certainly didn’t know anything about the publishing world. I remember breaking down one day due to the fact that my wife’s story needed to be heard. Her patience, fearlessness, and compassion is incredible. That same evening I was reading the Word of God on my Bible Gateway app, and an add popped up: “Fulfill God’s calling to publish your book…WestBow Press.”
A Christian View
Totally uneducated and in a naive state of mind, I filled out the questionnaire. Several months later, and I’m now riding the waves of having our story available to the world. Numerous people have found healing in our story, and I’m loving the lifestyle of writing. I’m so grateful I took the leap of faith and filled out the free publishing guide. Hundreds now know that schizophrenia is not bigger than God, and I have a growing platform to share a Christian point of view in the world of mental health. I highly recommend WestBow Press!
– WBP –
WestBow Press authors who’d like to share a 350-600 word experience related to the self-publishing of their books are invited to do so by sending a message through the WestBow Press Facebook page and follow the WestBow Press Twitter account @WestBowPress. WestBow Press reserves the right to edit stories for content, grammar, punctuation, and length.
I’m sure this book will help many who do not understand the ramifications surrounding this mental disease. Thankfully there is a way out of it’s clutches that the authors have discovered. We thank them for being brave enough to share a very painful and personal story.
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I’m so excited to have found your book! My husband, father of our two young sons, has just been recently diagnosed and stabilized on injectable medications for schizoaffective disorder. It may be some time before I’m able to sit down and read a book again, I wanted to suggest an audiobook version of your book! It will definitely help to reach more of the ones struggling to help their loved one that is going through a psyhiatric break! Thank you for sharing your life with the world, spreading awareness and understanding is key!