Category Archives: exhibitions

On publishing a book or WTF have I just done?

Back in early-ish 2014 I decided I might create something for the Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival (SMHAFF). Technically that’s more indecision than decision but I don’t do decisions. I can only do big, scary things if I can convince myself I’m not doing them. The result was what I call the Book Project and what everyone else knows as Keep Calm and Take Your Meds (A Library of Lunacy). It was exhibited in October 2014 at Summerhall during SMHAFF. It was fairly well received and one of the most common comments in the Little Book of Comments was a request to buy a copy of it. I’d had vague plans to turn it into an ebook or an omnibus edition but I’m terrible at finishing what I start.

One of the visitors to the exhibition was Jennie Renton who runs Main Point Books, a delightful little second hand bookshop in Edinburgh. She wanted to exhibit my work during MentalHealth Awareness Week which is in May. I agreed. In the process of finalising details for the mini-exhibition and a Meet the Artist event on 14th May, the subject of the Omnibus came up. Three or four full days of work later and the final proofs have been sent to a printing company in Glasgow. My book should be ready to sell at the event!

Argh! What have I done? I’ve created a monster! My brain is struggling to process this. I’m torn between pride and joy in having accomplished something, albeit with a HUGE amount of help from Jennie – I could not have done it without her, and terror because it’s terrible and awful and a mess and badly written and the artwork is horrendous. Several people, mostly friends, have already ordered copies but I’m terrified they’ll hate it when they actually see it. I wish my Evil Brain Pixies would just let me enjoy this moment but they won’t. They’re loving every minute of this. I’ve gone and done what I desperately try not to do. I’ve given them ammunition andthey’re shooting the good parts of my mind like it’s a zombie infestation.

Anyone know of a decent Evil Brain Pixie exterminator?

dad's army doomed