A year ago today, 22 Scars was first made available on Kindle and Apple Books (with the print version released a week later)! Tackling serious issues such as teenage depression, abuse, self-harm and suicide, I knew from the outset that it wasn’t going to be for everyone – and I’ve had plenty of reviews that have corroborated this.
But I’ve had far, far more reviews – sixty-six on Goodreads alone – that have praised it for its authenticity, bravery and refusal to flinch in the face of the severe mental anguish that young people today go through. And according to those reviews, it’s currently holding at an 83% positive rating – which I’m more than pleased with.
22 Scars was never meant to be an easy read, or a light one. It isn’t something you’d take to the beach with you. It was designed to haunt the soul, to connect with young adults who face these problems and aren’t heard, and to educate those of us who live with people suffering from depression. And according to my readers, it’s done just that. From comments such as this one from Laura:
I’ve read a lot of books were manic depression/suicidal thoughts and tendencies are glamorized, and this novel does not do that.
to this one from Amanda:
I like the way it educates the reader on depression and shows that many people throughout the world have it.
I feel like I’ve really been able to connect with people around depression, suicide and self-harm. And from others, such as Destinee, who said:
As someone struggling with depression I found this book to be both relatable and devastatingly honest.
I found it could actually make a difference in people’s lives.
In the end, I can’t say that 22 Scars has been an overnight success, at least not financially; nearly all of my ratings and reviews have come from free giveaways, and those who’ve paid for copies number the dozens. But for a small-time indie author self-publishing for the first time, I’m blown away by the reception: to consider that nearly a hundred people have read my words, been touched by them, and found meaning in them, is something I truly, truly cherish.
Here’s to another year of success – and if I don’t publish another book during that time, I hope at least that people will continue to connect with 22 Scars, and learn what it means to be depressed.
Thank you to all.