Would you sell your soul to the press to get publicity for your book?
Northern Ireland's old news. The media attention is on the current conflict in Afghanistan. The obvious angle for any publicist should have been the struggle that Veterans from previous campaigns face in their day-to-day lives. How so many of them have been forgotten. How so many of them are homeless. How so many some of them are in prison because of PTSD. How so many of them fight their battle within, against PTSD, on a daily basis, many of them not knowing if they'll maike it through another day.
All publicists want is a story that can go to the newspapers. Sensationalism sells.
Did I want to be a spokesperson for PTSD? No, I don't.
Can yout tell me what happened to you in Northern Ireland? No, I don't want to go into that and I don't want issues to be raised of Northern Ireland veterans against Afghanistan veterans. My awareness campaign is about how PTSD affects ALL veterans afflicted with the condition ... and I'm not after fame.
It made me sit back and take a good long, hard, look at the issues I'm up against. The whole project has been geared towards helping Veterans and their families. The proceeds to be used to help me continue therapeutic work and fund an exhibition to do more awareness raising ... and for 25% of the profits to go to the creative therapies wing of Combat Stress in order to facilitate Veterans using creativity as a coping mechanism for PTSD.
There's no profit yet. So far the book has broke even, which I guess is good going as it's been a solo affair from the point of view of publishing (apart from the help from Derek Thompson). In terms of running costs for the business etc ... I'm still running at a loss. There are still 750 odd copies left of the first print run. These need to be sold, so I think I'll put a discount on purchases from my website.
The last thing I said to the publicist was that the book speaks for itself. It doesn't need me to be a spokesman for anything.
I think I'll stay away from the media now.