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How writing novels saved my life!

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I can’t write my journey with jokes, or in a light-heartedly way because my journey simply hasn’t been light-hearted and happy. In fact, it has been the complete opposite, it has been depressing and at times, life-threatening, but if things didn’t happen this way, I never would have found the one thing that has changed my life forever. Through pure chance, I found the one thing that saved my life when I wanted to give up for good.

Now writing is something we all do. But for some people, it becomes something more than putting pen to paper or putting your fingertips to a keyboard. I know, because I’m one of those people.

My name is Meagan Dux, I’m 25 years old, I was born and raised in Perth, and I have written a novel, The Rise of Delilah, which has now been published. If I were told this would have happened to me a few years ago, I would have laughed and disagreed. There was no way in hell I was going to be an author. Not me, not someone who was, and still is, crippled by my mental health. But that’s precisely what happened, and now, I’m fighting for a better future for myself.

It’s not often that you find something that continually gives you chills every time you do it. That’s when you know you’re doing the one thing you were always destined to do. I’ve always believed everything happens for a reason, and at times I hated myself for thinking that, but I’ve come to realise how true it is. Everything in my life has lead me to this point, and things are finally turning around for me when I once thought I’d never see the sun shine in my life again.

In 2006, at just 14 years old, I tried to take my own life. From 2012 – 2014 they were three different occasions where I had a plan to end my life. I had no hope that things would get better, and I couldn’t take the crushing pain that I was enduring every single day. My mind was telling me I was worthless and I had nothing to offer this world. I no longer saw I future for myself. Whenever someone said, “Meagan where do you see yourself in 10 years?” I would quickly make something up, but the truth is, I didn’t see any future. I saw emptiness, and that’s when my depression skyrocketed, and I knew if I didn’t reach out, I was going to end up as another statistic for someone who couldn’t fight through the darkest moments of her life. In 2013 I was officially diagnosed with depression. Following this, my life spiralled out of control, and in 2016 I was diagnosed with chronic depression, or better known as Major Depressive Disorder, which unfortunately is the worst kind of depression one can have. It was during this time that I contemplated suicide again. I was heading down a very dark and lonely path, and I didn’t see any hope that things would get better. But then, my debut novel, The Rise of Delilah, happened, and it changed my life forever. Something told me I needed to write this story, and I kept ignoring the signs, but they consumed my life, and I couldn’t sleep, so finally, I gave in and began to type. I cannot begin to explain the process; it was insane. This novel came out of nowhere. It surprised the hell out of me, but because of this novel, I saved myself. I started to become the Meagan I’ve always wanted to be. And for the first time in a long time, I felt happy.

When I received my first shipment of novels, I excitedly began to sign some of the pre-ordered copies. After a few hours, I decided to take a copy for myself and I headed to my room. I sat in my desk chair and looked at the books that lined my shelves. These books were my escape when my depression took over my life. And I had always dreamed of the day that I could put my novel in between the two authors who had influenced me the most. To finally do that was a dream come true, and the unfamiliar feeling of happiness hit me again, and I welcomed it with open arms. I then began to think about two words that have been the driving force in my life ever since I wrote my first novel. These two words are passion and purpose.

I’ve grown up hearing that passion changes your life and that when the time is right, you’ll find the one thing that starts a fire that can never be put out. And that’s what happened when I decided to pen my first novel. In 2013, I was out with one of my friends, I made a joke that I wanted to write a book, but suddenly something hit me, and I felt a desperate need to write. I went home, and within a few minutes, I began writing a novel. Within a few months, I had completed a manuscript. I decided not to pursue having this novel published as it had been more of a therapeutic thing, and I wasn’t ready to share it with the world, but I remember looking at the freshly printed pages and thinking “Where the hell did this come from? And how did I manage to do this?” And to be honest, to this day I still don’t think I can answer those questions. I can’t tell you where my novels come from. When I sit down to type my ideas come out of nowhere. It sometimes feels like it’s not even me. It’s so surreal, but it’s exhilarating, and to me, it’s magic. And it makes me happy, and that says something. And the same thing happened when I wrote The Rise of Delilah, and it has since happened on novels I’ve worked on since finishing my debut novel.

When I write, the world stops. All my problems disappear, and I go to the most peaceful and happy place you could ever imagine. There are no words strong enough to tell you how thankful I am for finding my passion before it was too late. If I hadn’t found writing when I did, I can safely say I wouldn’t be here right now. Whenever things got too overwhelming, or my depression hit a peak, I would write, and it was my release. I still do those things to this day, and I’ll keep doing it for as long as I live.

My doctor, along with my family, friends, and writing saved my life. Without that support network and working towards a dream that meant more to me than life itself, I would have given up long ago. My depression will never go away, and that’s something I’ve come to accept. But in saying that, I know that while my depression will always be a part of my life, I’ll now be able to manage it better. The purpose of my life is to tell stories and to do the one thing that makes me happy no matter how bad my depression gets, and that is something that I’ll always appreciate. Writing stories is such an art, being able to write a story from a single idea is pure exhilaration. There are so many words at our disposal, and we can create a world that never existed before. You’re constantly challenged and your creativity can thrive without restrictions or limitations. It’s an endless world full of possibilities, and to me that’s priceless, and I can’t imagine doing anything else with my life. I’ve been amazed at the worlds that have since come to life when I’ve let my mind wander.

People often ask me what I want to get out of writing, and it’s very simple. I want to give readers what novels have given me. A place to escape the chaos of this world, a place to get lost in another world, and a place that offers comfort, and expression of emotions. If I give my readers the happiness that reading and writing gives me, then I’ll be happy, and as long as my readers love my work and enjoy the stories I tell, then I’m successful, regardless of how many books I sell.

You have a passion, and you have a purpose, and it’s your job to find out what that is. It may take weeks, months or even years, but trust me, it’s well worth the wait, and when you find the one thing that changes everything, you’ll understand why it is so important to be passionate about what you truly love. I love what I do, and I am happier than I’ve ever been because I am passionate about my purpose.

When I penned The Rise of Delilah last year, it turned my life around, and I’m continually working on getting better, and rising from my consuming mental health problems. It’s never too late to turn your life around, and it’s never too late to fight for your passion, even if your mind is trying to destroy you. It’s important to fight for your dreams, no matter how far-fetched they seem. As Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

You can follow my journey online OR buy her book now at

www.meagandux.com

www.facebook.com/authormeagandux or

www.instagram.com/authormeagandux

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