Victoria University Press, 2018


New stories of anxiety


"Excellent… Headlands is a powerful and comprehensive contribution to the New Zealand literature on mental health and wellbeing."

- Booksellers

About the book

In 2017, Ministry of Health figures showed that one in five New Zealanders sought help for a diagnosed mood or anxiety disorder, and these figures are growing. Headlands: New Stories of Anxiety tells the real, messy story behind these statistics – what anxiety feels like, what causes it, what helps and what doesn’t. These accounts are sometimes raw and confronting, but they all seek to share experiences, remove stigma, offer help or simply shine a light on what anxiety is.

The stories in Headlands are told by people from all walks of life: poets, novelists, and journalists, musicians, social workers, and health professionals, and includes new work from Ashleigh Young, Tusiata Avia, Danyl McLauchlan, Selina Tusitala Marsh, Hinemoana Baker and Kirsten McDougall.

shows that some communities have better access to mental health services than others and it underscores the importance for greater understanding of the condition across the whole of society. It is not a book of solutions nor a self-help guide. Instead, it has been put together for all individuals and whānau affected by anxiety. It’s also for those who are still suffering in silence, in the hope they will see themselves reflected in these pages and understand they are not alone.

Headlands is now in the process of becoming a series of short films.

Praise for Headlands

A collection of raw and hopeful essays from some of New Zealand’s best writers and others who are new to the craft. Headlands: New Stories of Anxiety tells the real, messy story behind the statistics about mental health - what anxiety feels like, what causes it, what helps and what doesn’t.

Charlotte Graham-McLay - RNZ

The stories are mostly experiential, often raw, sometimes hard to read, but all are courageous and invite the reader to share the author’s experience ... The gathering together of so many individual voices in one book creates a sense of community which helps to counter the isolation often associated with severe anxiety ... 
 If we can all stop and listen and open ourselves to each other’s experiences, we can begin to ease each other’s pain. Headlands is a useful starting point along that path. 

Priscilla Cameron - Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand

Contributors write bravely and brilliantly about what it’s like to live with anxiety ... Arnold has succeeded in her mission to draw together voices that offer ‘reassurance and validation’ to individuals and whānau affected by anxiety ... If you are living with anxiety – or questioning whether you are – or if someone you know or care about has an anxiety-related disorder and you want to know how you might support and help them, Headlands offers ideas, insights and hope.

Anne Kerslake Hendricks - Booksellers