Michael O'Mara strikes new two-book deal with naturalist Emma Mitchell

Rights - NonFiction Thursday, 13 September 2018

The first book, The Wild Remedy, is about how reconnecting with the natural world offers answers to today's mental health epidemic

Michael O'Mara Books has bought a further two books by naturalist, illustrator and Instagrammer Emma Mitchell. Fiona Slater, deputy editorial director, bought world rights to the two new titles from Juliet Pickering at Blake Friedmann.

The first, The Wild Remedy: How Nature Mends Us - A Diary, will publish on 3 January in hardback, priced £14.99. The second – as yet untitled - will publish in early 2020. This follows Mitchell's debut, Making Winter: A Creative Guide to Surviving the Winter Months, which was published in October 2017 to critical acclaim.

The Wild Remedy is 'a unique record of Emma's woodland walks, nature finds and wildlife discoveries over the course of a year, detailing how each encounter significantly influenced her mental wellbeing. Having suffered with depression for the last 25 years, Emma offers an unfailingly honest and affecting account, laying bare her seasonal highs and, sometimes devastating, lows.'

The book includes 100 hand-drawn illustrations and 40 colour photographs by Mitchell and is described by the publisher as 'a powerful testament to how reconnecting with the natural world may offer some answers to today's mental health epidemic. The book also delves into current science and calls on new research into areas such as forest bathing, seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and nature-inspired crafting.'

Slater said: 'Emma’s gift is to instil her writing with an irresistible combination of humour, heart-breaking candour and, perhaps most of all, a sense of companionship. Written with wit and frankness, and filled with beautiful drawings and photography, this is a book for anyone who has ever felt drawn to nature and wondered about its influence over us. It's a pleasure to be working on such a personal and powerful book, which has the capacity to resonate with and inspire so many. I feel like I needed The Wild Remedy, and I can't wait to share it with readers.'

Mitchell said: "I am thrilled to be working with the Michael O'Mara team again. Centuries of anecdotal evidence and literary accounts echo my experiences, and research is beginning to elucidate the scientific mechanisms that underpin nature's ability to soothe a troubled mind. My hope is that this book may encourage others who may have stressful lives to experience the curative effects of nature by exploring their local patch."

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