Out of the Blue: A Memoir of Workplace Depression, Recovery, Redemption and, Yes, Happiness

Out of the Blue: A Memoir of Workplace Depression, Recovery, Redemption and, Yes, Happiness

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by Jan Wong
     
 

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At the height of her career in journalism, Jan Wong's world came crashing down. A story she wrote on a school shooting sparked a violent backlash, including death threats. Her newspaper failed to stand by her, and for the first time in her life she spiraled into clinical depression. She found herself unable to write, but the paper's management thought she was

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Overview

At the height of her career in journalism, Jan Wong's world came crashing down. A story she wrote on a school shooting sparked a violent backlash, including death threats. Her newspaper failed to stand by her, and for the first time in her life she spiraled into clinical depression. She found herself unable to write, but the paper's management thought she was feigning illness, and fired her.

Out of the Blue is a memoir unlike any other. It is the surreal, wrenching, sometimes hilarious, and ultimately triumphant story of one woman's struggle to come to terms with depression.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Wongs book reveals a thousand cuts to her body and soul. A great and perceptive writer, she has the gift of precision, detailing the side effects of each failed anti-depressant, the vortex effect of being unable to look at buildings she associated with pain, the shopping cure that brought dopamine blasts, the awfulness of mornings, that April is the worst month for suicide, and the graininess of the films a security firm secretly took at the launch of her 2007 book, Beijing Confidential.

Out of the Blue is a page-turner suffused with suffering and pluck.

It is required reading for anyone interested in journalism. It is also required reading for anyone interested in the way employers treat employees with mental illnesses.

In this rare exploration of workplace depression, Wong asks the reader to confront issues many of us have had to deal with, no matter how long we have been in the traditional workplace she had worked for the Globe for two decades. For example, for those that ascribe to the I work therefore I am motto, like she did, it makes you wonder about your own life, and you will begin to ask yourself some tough questions.

Its an event rare enough in the Canadian publishing world to be considered a coup: a self-published non-fiction book former Globe and Mail journalist Jan Wongs Out of the Blue: A Memoir of Workplace Depression, Recovery, Redemption and, Yes, Happiness, launched May 5 has hit the Stars bestseller list, making its debut this week at No. 10.

Her latest memoir, Out of the Blue, reaffirms Wong as a brilliant writer and reveals a side of her we dont usually see: she is human like all of us.

As Wong states one in five individuals will be afflicted with a serious mental illness during their lifetime. Knowing this statistic, readers from all walks of life not to mention those employed as human resource representatives would definitely benefit from reading Out of the Blue.

Because of her honest book, conversation can continue within families, businesses and institutions, when a person’s behaviours suggest a mental health issue. Instead of being left to sink even deeper into illness, with support of therapists, friends and family, they can find their way to healthier and happier life.

There’s the W5 of Wong’s personal narrative: what happened to her, how she felt about it, what she did about it, etc. Which, as might be expected of a best-selling career journalist, is eminently readable and engaging.

Wong may have travelled al long road, but Out of the Blue signals her courageous return.

Toronto Star
Its an event rare enough in the Canadian publishing world to be considered a coup: a self-published non-fiction book former Globe and Mail journalist Jan Wongs Out of the Blue: A Memoir of Workplace Depression, Recovery, Redemption and, Yes, Happiness, launched May 5 has hit the Stars bestseller list, making its debut this week at No. 10.
Macleans magazine
Out of the Blue is a page-turner suffused with suffering and pluck.
Ottawa Citizen
It is required reading for anyone interested in journalism. It is also required reading for anyone interested in the way employers treat employees with mental illnesses.
Openbooktoronto.com
In this rare exploration of workplace depression, Wong asks the reader to confront issues many of us have had to deal with, no matter how long we have been in the traditional workplace she had worked for the Globe for two decades. For example, for those that ascribe to the I work therefore I am motto, like she did, it makes you wonder about your own life, and you will begin to ask yourself some tough questions.
Ricepaper.com
Her latest memoir, Out of the Blue, reaffirms Wong as a brilliant writer and reveals a side of her we dont usually see: she is human like all of us.
The Coast
As Wong states one in five individuals will be afflicted with a serious mental illness during their lifetime. Knowing this statistic, readers from all walks of life not to mention those employed as human resource representatives would definitely benefit from reading Out of the Blue.
Beaver River Banner
Because of her honest book, conversation can continue within families, businesses and institutions, when a person's behaviours suggest a mental health issue. Instead of being left to sink even deeper into illness, with support of therapists, friends and family, they can find their way to healthier and happier life.
Rover.com
There's the W5 of Wong's personal narrative: what happened to her, how she felt about it, what she did about it, etc. Which, as might be expected of a best-selling career journalist, is eminently readable and engaging.
Quill & Quire magazine
Wong may have travelled al long road, but Out of the Blue signals her courageous return.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780987868503
Publisher:
Jan Wong
Publication date:
05/05/2012
Pages:
264
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.80(d)

What People are saying about this

Toronto psychiatrist, writer and broadcaster - Dr. Irvin Wolkoff
Jan Wong has clearly and accurately presented the history, signs and symptoms of depression and its underlying and associated pathological correlates. Her research is thorough and presented clearly. Bravo! Perhaps more importantly, she has painted an accurate and evocative portrait of a person trying to live a life with major depression, in a way that will edify, disturb, or comfort the reader.
The Next Chapter - Shelagh Rogers
Jan Wong is a courageous journalist who has walked into fire, literally and metaphorically, to bring us the truth. In Out of the Blue, she does so again, but this time it's personal. As she tracks her spiral into unipolar depression, she applies the same rigor that has made her renowned as a reporter. Who knew that Jan Wong, one of the toughest journalists in Canada, could be incapacitated by the disease? Out of the Blue proves that it doesn't matter who you are: depression is an equal-opportunity soul stealer. It proves that even enlightened workplaces have yet to fully come to terms with mental illness. It also proves that recovery and understanding are absolutely possible. Jan is a wonderful writer and as she tells her own story, she speaks for me and for many. Some say depression is a gift. Well, it's not. But this book is.
From the Publisher
Jan Wong is a courageous journalist who has walked into fire, literally and metaphorically, to bring us the truth. In Out of the Blue, she does so again, but this time it's personal. As she tracks her spiral into unipolar depression, she applies the same rigor that has made her renowned as a reporter. Who knew that Jan Wong, one of the toughest journalists in Canada, could be incapacitated by the disease? Out of the Blue proves that it doesn't matter who you are: depression is an equal-opportunity soul stealer. It proves that even enlightened workplaces have yet to fully come to terms with mental illness. It also proves that recovery and understanding are absolutely possible. Jan is a wonderful writer and as she tells her own story, she speaks for me and for many. Some say depression is a gift. Well, it's not. But this book is.

Jan Wong has clearly and accurately presented the history, signs and symptoms of depression and its underlying and associated pathological correlates. Her research is thorough and presented clearly. Bravo! Perhaps more importantly, she has painted an accurate and evocative portrait of a person trying to live a life with major depression, in a way that will edify, disturb, or comfort the reader.

Toronto psychiatrist, writer and broadcaster - Irvin Wolkoff
Jan Wong has clearly and accurately presented the history, signs and symptoms of depression and its underlying and associated pathological correlates. Her research is thorough and presented clearly. Bravo! Perhaps more importantly, she has painted an accurate and evocative portrait of a person trying to live a life with major depression, in a way that will edify, disturb, or comfort the reader."

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Meet the Author

Jan Wong is a journalist and professor. Her other non-fiction books are Red China Blues, Jan Wong's China, Lunch With Jan Wong, and Beijing Confidential. Jan divides her time between Toronto and Fredericton.

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Out of the Blue: A Memoir of Workplace Depression, Recovery, Redemption and, Yes, Happiness 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
MindfulMonica1 More than 1 year ago
If there ever was an argument for the power of self-publishing, Jan Wong’s memoir is it. “Out of the Blue: A Memoir of Workplace Depression, Recovery, Redemption and, Yes, Happiness” is the story of how an accomplished newspaper reporter has her career and her life turned upside down in the aftermath of a news story she wrote about a school shooting in Montreal. She experienced death threats, and her editors failed to support her. Suddenly, or “out of the blue,” she spirals into clinical depression and is unable to function, in a newsroom anyway. I found her story fascinating for many reasons, not the least of which were the descriptions of newspaper functions and politics, which I remember, oh so clearly, from my days long ago as a journalist. Wong incorporates a good deal of research about the history, origins and treatments of depression; the prevalence of the disorder makes this information interesting and helpful. Wong is a masterful storyteller but what I found most compelling were her reasons for self-publishing. I would not have read her story at all if she had not overcome the gag orders initially demanded by her newspaper and the publishing company who initially accepted her book. While I didn’t agree with her on every point, thank goodness for her stubbornness and courage. I’m so glad I could read her version of the story. It made me glad I bought a new copy of her book — she deserves every penny.