Do you suffer from physical pain relating to your writing life?
Are you struggling with back pain, weight gain related to sedentary working, anxiety, depression, sleep problems, neck pain, eye strain, stress, loneliness, digestive issues, or Repetitive Strain Injury?
These are the most common issues reported by writers and if you struggle with any of them, you are not alone.
Writing is not a physically healthy job, but if you want a long-term writing career, then you need to look after your body.
I've been through my own pain journey over the last six years. I used to get crippling migraines that sent me to a dark room, and back pain so bad that I couldn't sleep, as well as stress levels so high that I wasn't able to breathe normally.
Now, my back pain, migraines and RSI have almost gone completely, and I manage my writing life in a far healthier way than ever before. I share my personal journey and insights with you in this book.
My co-author is Dr Euan Lawson, who shares his insights into how we can reduce pain, improve health and build a writing career for the long term.
Buy now in ebook or print format!
- Introduction and survey results from 1200 writers
- 7 reasons why writing is great for your health
Part 1: The Unhealthy Writer
- Stress, anxiety, burnout
- Back, neck and shoulder pain
- A personal journey to a pain-free back
- Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI)
- Writing with chronic pain
- Sedentary life and inactivity
- Sleep problems and insomnia
- Eye strain, headaches, and migraine
- A personal story of headaches and migraine
- Loneliness and isolation
- Weight gain or weight loss
- Joanna's Letter to Sugar
- Digestive issues and IBS
- A personal journey through IBS with FODMAP
- Mood and mental health
- Riding the waves: Writing with depression – by Dan Holloway
- Alcohol: The good, the bad, and the ugly
- Coffee and caffeine
- Supplements, substances, and nootropics
Part 2: The Healthy Writer
- Improve your workspace
- Sort out your sleep
- Sort out your diet
- From fat to fit
- Sort out your back
- Lessons learned about writing from yoga
- How to use dictation for a healthier writing life
- The active writer mindset
- Strategies for the sofa-bound
- The active writer: Three golden rules
- The running writer: Three rookie mistakes
- Lessons learned about writing from walking 100km in a weekend
- Find a community
- Build well-being with mindfulness
- Develop healthy habits for the long term
Conclusion: Your turn, choose life!
It's time to be a healthy writer!
Euan Lawson is a British medical doctor and a Fellow of the Royal College of General Practitioners. He's ex-British Army and enjoys fell running.
Joanna Penn helps authors make a living writing through her bestselling books, courses and podcast. She's an award-winning entrepreneur, international professional speaker and also writes bestselling thrillers and dark fantasy novels.
“Joanna and Euan make a formidable team to take on the challenge of unhealthy writers, who have a tendency to consider themselves a ‘brain in a vat’ and forget that they need self-care as much as the next person. As a work psychologist and writer, who suffers her own chronic pain, I found this a wonderful, practical book. It nudges the reader (via helpful information, questions, insights and advice) to think more broadly about their whole self in the context of writing, and how they can nurture mental, physical and emotional self to be the best possible writer than can be. The wealth of practical tips ensure there is something in there for most writers to benefit from.”
– Ellen Bard, C.Psychol. AFBPsS. Registered Psychologist. www.ellenbard.com