My publishing company’s monthly newsletter came out yesterday revealing the top 3 selling authors for June (pictured above) overall, not just by categories. Suddenly it hit home for me when I saw the newsletter. This isn’t just about my books, or becoming a bestselling author, this is about ADHD books making it out of category, rising above stigma and ultimately, a triumph for people with ADHD everywhere and those who are close to us! I posted about the achievement of my books a little while back when I first received notice, but the full significance had not hit home yet, not entirely, not until now.
When an ADHD book series became bestsellers of a publishing company this last June it was not only a moment to celebrate, but also time to truly think about what this means for us as a community. Consider that we are talking about an ADHD book series! There are significant implications here, let’s consider a few things:
- Many people still consider ADHD to be a myth! Ridiculously, there is still an ongoing debate whether or not ADHD even exists!
- The stigma! In a recent article on the Washington Post website, a young lady expressed disappointment and sadness that her name will forever be connected to ADHD because of the permanency of the internet. I understand her and sympathize, but it is sad.
- Well known celebrities have turned down reviewing ADHD books openly because they do not want their name attached to ADHD, even those who have it! I’ve been told this and although I completely understand, it is sad and demonstrates how far we still have to go. Too many of us live in the shadows and it is not easy to tell others we have ADHD. It can sometimes be damaging, to stand in the light and say “I have ADHD!” But, some do and they are making a difference! Howie Mandel and Adam Levine are two of the most recent to come forward: Bless them!
- Some people are afraid to simply be caught reading books about ADHD because others will judge them negatively.
I am sure you know well why it is significant that an ADHD book series has done so well; there’s been enough going against us that no single blog post could ever expose all of it.
Writing my books and publishing them openly has been one of the steps I have taken to reduce the stigma of having ADHD. I have lived through punishment, guilt, ridicule and utter shame, and I was warned by some close to me not to publish One Boy’s Struggle: A Memoir because of potential backlash. Did I do the right thing?
I published my books and backlash did come, and it continues to come, but through it all I continue to write. Let me tell you though, that backlash does not always come from expected places and maybe, just maybe, it is because of my ADHD mind that any negativity that comes my way only compels me to step out further, to write more and to continue to ask each of us to look for the gifts within ourselves! We are so much better than we sometimes give ourselves credit for!
My publisher, Infinity Publishing is a major self-publishing company that has published over 6000 titles with authors to their credit such as Emmy award-winning Lisa Mason and C.D. Payne who authored Youth In Revolt, which became a movie and debuted at #9 at the box-office! Shandi Finnessey and many other bestselling authors have also used Infinity, I am deeply honored to be in their company and to have written a series of books that so many people have related to. If readers cannot relate to a book, or the message does not resonate with them, they will not recommend it or pass it on, and that is what drives any book to the top of any chart.
Thank you so much to my readers and all of my supporters! Thanks, especially to my wife, Joan! She’s awesome and she has my deepest respect, my overwhelming gratitude and my unyielding love. I also want to thank the wonderful co-workers I’ve had over the years where I have had the honor to work for an amazing non-profit global company, the best of its kind! Last, but not least, thanks to my family, who admittedly I have confused and utterly dazed beyond measure.
Pass the word: ADHD is making it out into the open, and one day, if we keep at it, we will be free of the stigma, shame, guilt and false perceptions. ADHD is real, and together, you and me, we are making a difference.