Pan Macmillan’s Bluebird will publish a memoir by UK journalist Eleanor Morgan offering a “vivid insight into the crippling impact of anxiety disorder”.
Carole Tonkinson pre-empted UK and Commonwealth rights to Anxiety for Beginners: A Memoir from Jon Elek at United Agents.
Morgan’s first-person account of her own struggles with anxiety was published online as part of ‘The Vice Guide to Mental Health’ and was read by 5m people across 15 countries within four days.
The book will “serve as a guide for those who live with anxiety and those who live with it by proxy”.
Morgan will combine her own experiences with research from experts including neurologists, psychiatrists, geneticists and fellow sufferers.
Tonkinson said: “Eleanor’s writing is wonderful: evocative, compelling, packed with nuance. I believe her honesty, voice, and journalistic sense of enquiry are going to make this book the classic text on anxiety.
“Her approach is empowering and this book will help many sufferers and those who care about them. I am incredibly proud that her work will feature on the Bluebird list.”
Morgan said: “Writing about my own experience wasn't easy at first. I dreaded the response, thinking I'd instantly be labelled as ‘mad’. Only, the echo I got from writing about myself was so huge, it was staggering. People all over the world told me how they, too, had been living in a secret hell and had been inspired to talk after reading my piece.
“That is why I'm writing this book. Not just to expand my own understanding of the thing that has, at times, made my life very miserable, but to fully explore just how widespread and nuanced anxiety is in our modern society and make it clear that, even with an anxiety disorder, you can live a full, rich and happy life.”
Bluebird will publish in hardback in June 2016.