Escaping Psychiatry in audio. Sample and possibility of a FREE copy!

Hi all:

I know I’ve been talking about the audio for my book Escaping Psychiatry for a long time. That is because although the recording took place last year (go and meet great actor, writer, and director Alan Cooke (Wild Irish Poet) I nearly forgot to add he won an Emmy) the distribution proved a bit complicated, although now that ACX is accepting audios from the UK I finally managed to get it out there and available.

Let me tell  you a bit about it:

Escaping Psychiatry (audiobook) by Olga Núñez Miret. Narrated by Alan Cooke
Escaping Psychiatry (audiobook) by Olga Núñez Miret. Narrated by Alan Cooke

‘Escaping Psychiatry’ has it all: intriguing characters, noir style, thrilling pursuits, dangerous situations, crime, serial killers, religion, family secrets, murder, psychological insights, mental illness, trauma, debates about prejudice and morality, heated trials, police investigations, corruption, and mystery. If you enjoy ‘Wire in the Blood’, ‘Cracker’ and ‘Lie to Me’ and you are not scared of going deeper and darker, dare to keep listening.

Narrated by Emmy Award Winner Actor, Writer and Director Alan Cooke (a.k.a. Wild Irish Poet this audio version makes the character live and will hook you from the very beginning.
‘Escaping Psychiatry’ is a collection of three stories with the same protagonist, Mary, a psychiatrist and writer. She is trying to develop her literary career but circumstances and friends conspire to keep dragging her back to psychiatry.
In ‘Cannon Fodder’, Phil, a lawyer who and Mary’s friend asks her to provide a report on one of his clients, a young African-American man called Cain White. Cain is a very religious man and has been accused of inciting a riot at a religious meeting. He says he can hear God’s voice. He insists that God is black and his appears to be a Black Nationalist message. Is Cain insane, deluded, misguided, looking for media-attention, or a Saint? To find an answer to these questions Mary talks to his family and friends. Although she concludes he is sane,Mary’s investigation uncovers some very damaging revelations about his family life, beliefs and local attitudes. Who is a saint and who is a sinner is a matter for debate. The more Mary gets involved in the lives of Cain and those close to him the more she realises how dangerous secrets are. Like time-bombs ready to set off any minute.
‘Teamwork’: Captain Tom McLeod, from the San Francisco Police Department, invites Mary for a meal at home with his wife. When she meets their other guest, a young detective called Justin, she quickly realises there is an agenda well beyond a friendly meal. Justin’s partner, mentor and father figure, Sgt David Leaman, was killed a couple of months earlier during a routine investigation. Justin witnessed the event but he insists in going back to work and refusing any therapy or counselling. Tom and others at the department are concerned about his mental state but have failed to convince him to accept professional help. Both Mary and Justin are reluctant to engage in the ambush/informal consultation organised, but eventually decide to give it a try. At first sight it appears to be a straight forward case of unresolved grief, but things aren’t as clear-cut as they appear and Mary ends up getting too personally involved with the case, to the detriment of her professional objectivity.
In ‘Memory’, Mary runs out of her apartment after a difficult encounter with her friend Phil, and goes missing. When she is found it seems that she was hit in the head, abducted, raped and she is suffering from amnesia. She never recovers memory for the assault and finds it difficult to come to terms with something she cannot recall.  The clues point towards a serial killer who could not finish his job in her case. But some things do not fit in. Who disturbed the killer? Why was she left there? The crime and the investigation surrounding it have a profound impact on Mary who decides that she needs to reconsider her life and start anew.
The epilogue revisits Mary at the point of the trial of her abductor and sees what changes have taken place in her life. Will she finally manage to Escape Psychiatry?
Although these stories are fictional, the author, a forensic psychiatrist, brings her expertise and insight to the material, lifting it above a standard crime caper.

Oh, you’re asking me where can you get it? I thought you’d never ask!


In Audible UK:



In Amazon (everywhere):


ACX very kindly offered me a number (not telling you how many) codes that can be used to download a free copy of Escaping Psychiatry. I have codes for Audible. and At the moment I’m trying to coordinate some joint promotions with other authors who have also published audiobooks but wandered if you had any ideas of what would be the best way to use these codes. Any thoughts?

Ah, and there’s is another option to get it for free. If you’ve never downloaded any audiobooks in Audible, they offer you the first title for free (and what’s more, they’re so happy they offer me a bonus). So…you have no excuse not to listen.

In case you need more convincing, I leave you a video in YouTube showcasing a sample of the book, from the first story, Cannon Fodder. (Sorry. It’s my first attempt at one of these things but the sample is good. The visuals are all my fault, I’m afraid.)

Thanks very much for reading, and watching, and listening, and if you’ve liked it, you know, like, comment, share, and CLICK!


Review of The Spirit of Ireland — An Odyssey Home —Ireland Memoir. Audiobook by Alan Cooke (a.k.a Irish Wild Poet: A truly inspiring voyage

Spirit of Ireland. An Odyssey Home

I recently finished listening to the audio of The Spirit of Ireland by Alan Cooke. I had listened (and read) Naked in New York where the author explores his adventures and experiences in New York, that I’ve reviewed in the past and again recommend. I’ve also watched his movie Home that I feel is a good companion piece of Naked and has the advantage of documenting Cooke’s personal journey whilst incorporating the views of New Yorkers old and young, famous and unknown, native and immigrants. He well deserves the Emmy for his writing in the film and I am at a loss to account for the lack of distribution for it.

The author, an Irish actor, now turned writer, voice coach, and creator of audio and video sketches, returned to Ireland after his visit to the US. The Spirit of Ireland is his memoir of the process of rediscovering his country, his nation, his culture, and himself. In some ways it picks up from where Naked left, but in my opinion it goes further and deeper than the previous book.

Mr Cooke combines purely autobiographical episodes (I find his remembrances of childhood scenes particularly touching) with passages where he sets his spiritual/real travels. In his trips to places known (his parents’ house, villages they used to visit when he was a child) he notes the changes experienced, the contrast between his expectations, built through years of dreaming about “home” from afar, and the sometimes stark reality. He also observes the changes inside, and  how he sees and feels differently now.

In his travels to new places, places that call to him, he feels at times a communion with the elements, with the spirit and soul of Ireland that he embraces fully.

His descriptions of quasi-mythical animals (the horse that visits his house and seems to symbolise the untamed Celtic s spirit of the island), of primeval landscapes (that reflect the magical and ancestral power of the land), of people and faces will touch you, even if you, like me, have not a drop of Irish blood running through your veins. The author seems to tap into something that is at the same time profoundly personal but also universal, and through his voice he takes us to a place that is wondrous, exhilarating, frightening and raw. A place where we have to confront ourselves, and if we survive, we’ll finally be Home. I wonder if this is what Carl Jung was talking about when he referred to the Collective Unconscious.

The collective unconscious – so far as we can say anything about it at all  – appears to consist of mythological motifs or primordial images, for which reason the myths of all nations are its real exponents. In fact, the whole of mythology could be taken as a sort of projection of the collective unconscious… We can therefore study the collective unconscious in two ways, either in mythology or in the analysis of the individual. (From The Structure of the Psyche, CW 8, par. 325.)

Carl-Jung-mod (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Having visited a tiny bit of West Ireland a few months ago I recognised some of the descriptions (loved the Isles of Aran and adored CD 4). I could also identify with some of the experiences (I remember my thoughts during my First Communion too). I gladly accompanied him on his visits and would love to meet the many characters he comes across, that always have stories to tell and help create a quilt of experiences and voices to illustrate the nature of the place and its people. The author, a bard and raconteur, is narrator, protagonist, interpreter, and performer. He has said in interviews that above all he is a performer and he can connect and communicate with people live in ways he feels is not possible by writing on the page. I feel he is too modest, although I must admit that the combination of the words with his voice and reading makes it irresistible. (And I take the opportunity to recommend some of his other audios too [A Christmas Carol, De Profundis, Oscar Wilde’s Fairy Tales…]. You might not want to listen to anybody else’s work after that but…).

The memoir genre has become oversubscribed. Sometimes it feels as if everybody wants to write one or has written one. Don’t worry, though. This is not your standard memoir. Although the author shares very personal and even intimate experiences (the image of his mother’s reaction when she heard of the death of her own mother, the author’s grandmother, run over by a lorry will stay with me forever), it never becomes an exercise in self-indulgence. He is the consciousness of that spirit, and you won’t get any gossip or know the everyday details of life in the Burren. I leave you a link to an interesting article posted at BerkeleyUniversity on memoirs. According to Christopher Booker’s seven basic plots, The Spirit of Ireland probably falls within the plots of ‘quest’ (Odyssey being a very apt word), ‘voyage and return’ and ‘rebirth’. And if we look at William Grimes’s article: ‘We All Have A Life. Must We All Write About It?’ it would probably fall somewhere between ‘the spiritual-journey memoir’ and ‘the spirit of place memoir’. It is all of that and more. If you want to go to places you haven’t been, get in touch with your own spirituality, and connect with collective myths, whilst listening to a beautiful and engrossing voice, I recommend you the audio of The Spirit of Ireland.

Mr Cooke sells all his work through his own website, here:

There you will also find links to his Facebook pages (where you can follow his posts, including samples of new work, photographs, etc.), his e-mail address if you want to contact him, and you can also access updates on his projects.

Thank you for reading and as if you’ve enjoyed it, remember to like, comment, share and of course CLICK!

This is the link to the article on memoirs:

Sabios (?) consejos

Sabios (?) Consejos y un nuevo video

Como sabéis soy psiquiatra y mi trabajo consiste en ver a gente, asesorarlos, diagnosticarlos, recetarles medicación si la necesitan y supervisar su tratamiento (ya que trabajo en un hospital). Los psiquiatras estudiamos Medicina y como cualquier otro especialista luego seguimos estudiando y trabajando en la especialidad escogida.

Aunque todos los médicos deben ser buenos comunicadores, eso es aún más importante para los psiquiatras. Tienes que intentar escuchar a la gente, sin juzgarles, e intentar no darles instrucciones y decirles lo que deben hacer, ya que en muchos casos es un proceso de auto-descubrimiento. Después de muchos años de escuchar a mucha gente y de observarlos a veces no puedo evitar dar algunos consejos generals e intentar seguirlos yo misma.

Aquí os dejo algunos de mis “sabios (?) consejos.”

Primero, sed amables con vosotros mismos y trataos bien. Muchos de nosotros nos juzgamos con dureza y nos castigamos por no ser perfectos. Siempre le aconsejo a la gente (y es muy difícil de hacer en el momento) que intenten pensar qué consejo le darían a alguien (un amigo o conocido) que les contara algo parecido a lo que me estaban diciendo. ¿Qué haríais vosotros? ¿Les diríais que son malas personas y que merecen ser castigados? Si la respuesta es no, entonces intentad sed tan amables con vosotros como lo seríais con los demás. Sí, por supuesto, aceptar vuestra responsabilidad, aprended de vuestros errores, y luego seguid adelante e intentad no cometer los mismos errores de nuevo.

Segundo, y muy relacionado con el primero, intentad obtener algo de perspectiva. Cosas que parecen enormes y terribles cuando pasan, al cabo de un tiempo no lo son tanto. No es fácil, pero si podéis aprender a intentar alejaros mentalmente de la situación y ganar una opinión más equilibrada os daréis cuenta de cuáles son las cosas importantes de verdad y cuáles son vuestras prioridades. No perdáis vuestro tiempo y energías en cosas sin importancia. (Un corolario de esto sería, no lo toméis todo personalmente. Sí, a veces os encontraréis a gente malintencionada que haga comentarios desagradables sobre vosotros, pero a veces nos tomamos a pecho y personalmente comentarios neutrales o anodinos y les otorgamos un significado e importancia que no tienen.)

Tercero. Cuando uno se siente bajo de ánimo a veces parece que estemos en un agujero tan profundo que no puede haber salida. Puede que no sea evidente pero siempre hay una salida y a veces no la podemos ver porque en lugar de mirar hacia arriba seguimos excavando y haciendo el agujero más profundo. Puede que esté muy arriba y no sea fácil de alcanzar pero hay salida. Y aunque no todo el mundo, siempre hay gente dispuesta a ayudar.


Y ahora la promoción. Si no habláis inglés pues nada, pero si lo habláis, os dejo con un video que Alan Cooke (a.k.a Wild Irish Poet, Poeta Irlandés Salvaje) ha creado presentando mis obras. Ha usado un poquito (?) de licencia poética pero es un narrador tan fantástic0 y tiene una voz…

Sé que tenéis curiosidad. Echadle un vistazo.

También está disponible en mi página de autora de Amazon:úñez-Miret/e/B009UC58G0

Si queries saber algo más del trabajo de Alan, aquí está su página en Facebook:

Y aquí su página web:

Y éste post incluye una reseña de su libro ‘Naked en New York’


Y gracias por leer.

Pearls of wisdom

“Pearls of Wisdom” and amazing video.


As you know I work as a psychiatrist and my job involves seeing people, assessing them, coming up with diagnoses and looking after them (as I work in a hospital) and prescribing medication. Psychiatrists study Medicine and like in any other specialties in Medicine we then go on to study and work more in depth on our subject.

Although all doctors should be able to communicate well, that’s of the outmost importance in Psychiatry. You need to try and be a good listener, non-judgemental and try not to be too directive. After years of listening and observing people I can’t sometimes help offering some general advice and try to apply it to myself.

Here I leave you some of my “pearls of wisdom”.

First, be kind to yourself. Many of us tend to judge ourselves very harshly and punish ourselves for being less than perfect. I always advise people (and that’s very difficult to do in the heat of the moment) to try and think what advice they would give to somebody else (a friend, and acquaintance) if they were telling them about the same issues, problems, they are going through. Think about it. Would you tell them they were horrible? Would you punish them? Then, grant yourself the kindness you’d give others. Yes, learn from your mistakes, accept responsibility, but then move on and try and not make the same mistake again.

Second and very related to the first, try and gain perspective. Things that appear huge at the time are not so from a distance. It’s not easy, but if you can learn to try and step out of the situation and get a more balanced view, you’ll realise what the really important things are and which are your priorities. Don’t sweat the small stuff. (A caveat of this would be, don’t take everything personally. Yes, sometimes people might make nasty comments about you, but sometimes we might personalise pretty anodyne or neutral comments and imbue them with a meaning they don’t have.)

Third. When you’re feeling low it might feel as if you’re in a deep hole and there’s no way out. Sometimes it’s not evident but there is a way out and we can’t see it because we keep digging further down rather than looking up. However far up and difficult there are always alternatives. Not everybody is helpful but there are people who can help. You don’t have to do it all alone.


And now I leave you with a video Emmy award winner Alan Cooke (a.k.a Wild Irish Poet) has created talking about my writing and works. There’s some (?) use of poetic license but he’s such a wonderful narrator and has such a great voice that…

Well, I know you’re curious. Check it out!.

It’s also available in my Amazon author page:úñez-Miret/e/B009UC58G0

If you want to check Alan’s work, go here:

Or  check his webpage:

This is my post where I included a review of his book ‘Naked in New York’ and some other great books.


Thanks for reading.