KEEPING TALKING

Katie Green Signing Lighter Than My Shadow

It has been quite a month!

I wrote on my website recently about how strange it is that Lighter Than My Shadow is now finished and ‘out there’. After working on it in virtual isolation for so long, it has been odd (and quite wonderful) to at last be sharing it, and hearing what people think. I’ve spent the month since publication traveling all around the UK for launches, book fairs and events to talk about the book. I’ve been interviewed in The Guardian and I’ve even been on Radio 4.

I spent a long time preparing myself for these months. I knew, to some extent, what I was letting myself in for: that, for a while at least, my identity might once again be defined by the illness I’ve experienced. I decided I was OK with that. But still it’s been weird and hard to stand up and speak and answer questions from strangers who now know so much about my personal life. But it’s also been wonderful to talk. Part of why I wanted to write the book is because I don’t think we talk about the difficult things enough. And so I intend to keep talking.

I’ve been thinking a lot about how to use this website going forward, especially the blog. I’ve still got some more things I can share about making the book, including a considerable number of ‘deleted scenes.’ But I’d also like to open the conversation, and use the space to answer questions – about the book or about recovery in general – so if you have a question please do contact me. I’ve loved hearing from everyone who’s written to me in response to the book so far.¬†Though I sadly haven’t had time to respond to every email individually, I have read and appreciated them all. Thank you.

 

 

Graphic Medicine

Graphic Medicine

Here’s a short break from blogging about the creative process to mention this exciting conference that I’ll be presenting at this weekend. If you’re in or near Brighton I’d highly recommend coming along.

I first discovered Graphic Medicine through Andrew Godfrey, who mentioned the website to me not long after we first met. I had the great pleasure of attending (and speaking at) their conference day in Leeds in 2011, where I met many lovely people with creative and/or academic interests like mine, exploring and discussing the interface between comics and medical practice.

Graphic Medicine

This year’s conference theme is ethics, and I’ll be presenting a paper about some of the questions I faced during work on Lighter Than My Shadow. In particular my ethical concerns were about how much detail to share. I’ll talk about why I never reveal my lowest weight, but having made that decision, whether it’s then contradictory to show illustrations of an emaciated body: don’t they amount to the same thing? And my questions about sexual abuse: what do and don’t I need to show to make the story both clear and impactful without being gratuitous and upsetting? I won’t give too much away as I’ll probably share some of the presentation here after the conference: I’m sure it will also be made available as a podcast, too.

It’s a great honour to be presenting at this year’s conference, and I’m really excited about it (nervous, too). I’m part of a panel call Moral Risks, speaking alongside Andrew Godfrey and Emma Mould, Ravi Thornton and Matthew Green, and John Swogger. I’m also looking forward to presentations from Paula Knight, Mita Mahato, Simon Moreton, Sarah Lightman, MK Czerwiec and Ian Williams, plus a workshop with Hannah Berry. And that’s without even mentioning the keynote speakers, Nicola Streeten, Paul Gravett and David B! Also, if last time is anything to go by, the weekend will be a whirlwind of making new connections with people from all over the world with lots of different backgrounds, sharing ideas and enthusiasm. I can’t wait.