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Saturday, 25 October 2014

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Teenage Dalton author hopes book will boost mental health awareness

A YOUNG Dalton author has completed and published a novel about the modern state of mental health – having started writing it when she was just 16.

Faye Ronson, 18, of Dalton, has been writing since she was a child, and began work on her debut book, Letters to the Grave, when she was in her last year at Dowdales School, finally finishing it this month.

The novel was published by AuthorHouse, and is based on her experiences working as a housing officer.

Miss Ronson said: “I wanted to write the book to raise awareness of mental health issues I’ve seen during the course of my job. It’s based on people that I’ve encountered while working as a housing officer.

“I have a lot of favourite authors and books that I like, but, in terms of inspiration, most of that has come from life experience.

“I’m really happy to have completed my first book, and of course my family are all very pleased too.”

Miss Ronson is in the early stages of an apprenticeship with Bolton at Home as a housing officer for tenancy support, but before this spent a lot of her teenage years doing voluntary work in the field.

“I submitted a first chapter during the writing of it and heard nothing back. Then after I finished it I submitted it again and two publishers were interested.”

The story is about a girl who loses her uncle but continues to write letters to him, using the letters as a release, much like a journal.

The teenage protagonist, Roxy, struggles with a range of mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, eating disorders and slight psychosis.

During the course of the narrative Roxy gains a new boyfriend and a group of friends that support her and help her with her sickness. The cover of the novel bears the words “Based on a True Story”.

Miss Ronson hopes her novel will show how serious mental illness can be, to bring the topic to light and show it is not something to be ashamed of.

She said: “I’d love to raise awareness of mental health because even today the topic is frowned upon and that makes people feel as though they can’t speak about it, leaving them trapped and scared.

“I hope my novel can change that.”

Miss Ronson has no intention of stopping her writing career any time soon.

She said: “Eventually I would like to write lots of novels.”

Authorhouse describes itself as a publisher that “exists to help authors achieve success”.

Authorhouse places power in the hands of the author, allowing them to choose the amount of assistance they need and keep complete creative control.

Have your say

this is truly amazing! be very proud of yourself faye!! let me know where i can get a copy!!!

Posted by Sabrina Favell on 21 January 2014 at 00:21

Well done! Keep up your good work and hope your book is a success.

Posted by Another sufferer who did not seek help on 16 January 2014 at 18:45

View all 3 comments on this article

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