Those of you who follow my daughter’s blog already know this, but: Abby has been working on a book lately. You’d also know this if you read my late-March post, “Watching a book be born.”
Happy to announce that “Frugality For Depressives: Money-Saving Tips For Those Who Find Life A Little Harder” is here, and happier still to be giving away a couple of copies of the electronic version.
(Edited to add: Hannah at Unplanned Finance is also giving away a copy. Use the link to find out how to enter; the deadline is May 9.)
(Note: The above link is for the Kindle version. Anyone who wants an ePub or PDF version can check the ad on the right-hand side of this page. It’s the same price – $7.99 – for all these editions.)
During her post-illness years of poverty and struggle, Abby looked for money advice but couldn’t find anything that worked. Personal finance blogs were popping up like mushrooms after a rain but they all said the same stuff over and over:
- “Drink one less coffee a day and you’ll retire rich!” (Many days Abby was too sick to leave her apartment – and she doesn’t like coffee anyway.)
- “Get a second job to help pay off debt!” (Depressives with chronic fatigue sometimes can’t even get a first job, let alone a second one.)
- “All those toys you bought during the good times? Put them on Craigslist and watch your fortunes rise!” (It took her a year and a half to save up enough rewards points to get herself a basic MP3 player. Toys R Not her.)
She often saw a phrase I’ve come to loathe: “If I can do it, anyone can.” Gah. Basic money hacks do work for a lot of people, but they don’t work for everyone.
Abby tried – oh, how she tried. “Each failure drove the shame and despair deeper. Each new twist focused my mind on my inability to be the good frugal girl I was raised to be.”
[Sorry about that, kid.]
Since she couldn’t become a perfect frugalist, Abby decided to hack the hacks.
That is, she took the typical PF tenets and rewrote them until they worked for her. “Typical” doesn’t work for someone who’s not typical.
She also started her blog, I Pick Up Pennies, and over time has built an audience not just of fellow depressives and the chronically ill, but also of people who find help and inspiration in what she calls “imperfect frugality.”
Win the book
That hard-earned knowledge is now all in one place – and it isn’t just for depressives. Certainly the book can help those with depression or other illnesses, but it’s also for those whose lives don’t fit neatly into the do this/don’t do that binary.
Not that she’s letting anyone off the hook, including herself. Abby works to watch her spending, shop as intentionally as possible and build an emergency fund, and has even managed to create small (but earnest!) retirement accounts for herself and her husband (who is also chronically ill).
She examines the ABCs of PF with the eye of a survivor, the compassion of a therapist, and the bullshit detector of a fellow traveler who knows what it’s like to hear the siren call of, “Your life is so hard – you deserve that [whatever-it-is].”
Yet the book doesn’t scold or even goad. It leads and it encourages:
- That didn’t work? Try it this way.
- Overwhelmed physically and emotionally? Break down this frugal hack into these steps and do one a day if that’s what you need.
- Be kind to yourself, but remember that includes thinking about Future You – which in turn means being smarter about money.
And those of you who come out in hives at the sight of a spreadsheet are gonna love her advice on budgeting: “Don’t.”
(But of course it’s not that simple. She provides other options for corralling those dollars.)
Right now I’m giving away two e-copies of “Frugality for Depressives.” Those of you who don’t have/don’t like e-readers will have your chances, too, though: When the book is available in physical form, I’ll give away a couple of copies of that, too.
In the meantime, here’s how to enter for an e-version:
- Leave a comment below
- Subscribe via e-mail or Feedburner
- Sign up to follow me on Twitter or Facebook
- Sign up for my weekly newsletter (go to WriteABlogPeopleWillRead.com/blog and look on the right-hand side of the page, or e-mail me at SurvivingAndThriving@live.com and ask to be added to the list)
The deadline to enter is 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 3. If I don’t hear back from the winners by 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 4, I’ll have the random number generator pull two new names.