The Wild Remedy, how nature mends us, published in 2019* is a detailed, self-illustrated diary of a year of Emma’s nature walks, accompanied by the science underpinning the mental health benefits of setting foot among trees, plants or on the shore.
The Wild Remedy is a Sunday Times Bestseller and was featured on BBC Springwatch 2020. Amy Liptrot, Wainwright prize-winning author of the Outrun says ‘Emma’s writing is precise, gorgeous and inspiring’, the Guardian calls it ‘excellent’ and Sue Perkins, Man Booker judge 2009 says ‘this is a beautiful, beautiful book and I can’t recommend it enough.’
Emma is working on a new book called Made Well about the scientifically proven mental health benefits of craft and creativity. It will be published in October 2022.
Making Winter began in the Autumn of 2011 on my previous blog, as a creative antidote to the seemingly incessant grey days between November and March. I had noticed that creative activities, especially those that have a repetitive element such as yarn craft, drawing or embroidery had helped me through an especially difficult time, particularly in the winter months after a close family member had a near fatal accident. By encouraging other bloggers to share what helped them through tough days a community developed and the project seemed to give solace to those who were struggling by encouraging them to share photos of their handmade
The book that resulted from the Making Winter project, was published in 2017* is described by nature writer Robert Macfarlane as ‘creative, gorgeous, and inspiring’ and contains 24 seasonal craft projects and recipes designed to boost mood during the winter months. Many of the projects are nature-inspired and some need a brief winter walk to collect materials from woods or hedgerows. My hope is that the mood-boosting effect of immersal in making, combined with the benefits of contact with nature may help those who struggle in winter to enjoy the weeks between November and March.
Women on Nature is an anthology that gathers the voices of women from the fourteenth to the twenty-first centuries, whose subject is the natural world in Britain, Ireland and the outlying islands of our archipelago. Edited by author of the Fishladder Katherine Norbury, this collection of nature writing from authors such as the Brontes, Anita Sethi, Kathleen Jamie, Julian of Norwich and Mrs Beeton presents a fresh vision of the natural world and is of unique importance in terms of women’s history. I was honoured to have been asked to contribute to this collection. My essay on the effects of a woodland walk on my thoughts is called ‘The muntjac’. Deborah Warner of The Times says of Women on Nature: ‘A fine, rare and landmark collection of nature writing, both prose and poetry, all by female writers’
*by Michael O’Mara