THE founder and director of a Somerset rehabilitation centre has written a book offering hope and practical advice for people who are struggling to overcome difficult circumstances.

Angie Clarke’s book, Sh*t Creek to Somewhere Else, was published by Rethink Press on August 29 and has received positive reviews online. 

The book uses nine powerful personal lessons from Angie's life to help readers make the best of whatever life throws at them. 

Her book aims to give readers the courage and emotional tools to begin the journey to recovery from abuse, abandonment or addiction; build resilience to deal with setbacks, and take back control of their situations. 

Angie, who runs the Somewhere House Rehabilitation Centre for Drug and Alcohol Addiction in Burnham-on-Sea, said: "I’m very lucky. I have an opportunity to help people change and get different lives.

"I’m really proud of the fact that I wrote the book, and I enjoyed the process of writing and I realised that I could do it.

"I don’t have any expectations of the book. I wrote it with the view that, if I helped one person, then it was one person more than I’d already helped in the world." 

The book draws on Angie’s own life experiences. 

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"I had a very adverse childhood," she said.  

"If you looked at the extremes of how life was, most people would go, 'Oh my gosh, how do you move through that?'."

After working with a lot of people who have had similar experiences, Angie recognised that she may be able to communicate with and support more people by writing a book.

"We all have adversities in our lives, every single one of us,” she said.  

"We’ve all experienced something which has brought us to a position where we could go one way or another.

"What the book does is give you those choices.

"I don’t think I’ve got it right, but what I did, and my journey, has got me to where I am today.

"I’m reasonably successful, and so to a certain degree I’d like to share my luck." 

Somerset County Gazette: POWERFUL: A reader enjoys Sh*t Creek to Somewhere ElsePOWERFUL: A reader enjoys Sh*t Creek to Somewhere Else

She shared her first draft of the book with her husband and with a member of her team at Somewhere House, both of whom she trusted to give her honest feedback.

"It’s been a long process," said Angie.

"My book has always been in my head.

"Because it’s my story, and my journey through what I’ve experienced and how I’ve come out the other side of it, it came quite freely." 

The book was published just under two months ago on Angie’s 'clean time birthday' – the anniversary of her being sober – which she described as a "lovely coincidence".

With Sh*t Creek to Somewhere Else published and gaining positive reviews from as far away as the United States, Angie has already started planning her second and third books.

Reflecting on the process of writing her first book, she said: "Everyone could write a book – it’s whether or not you really want to, and then it’s being brave enough to expose yourself to the world.

"It’s having courage to think that what you’ve got is right.

"And I would always say to ask somebody you trust who would give you an honest opinion.

"I’m really proud of the fact that I’ve done it. It’s an achievement, and people keep going, ‘Oh, you’re a published author now!’."

Sh*t Creek to Somewhere Else is available to buy online from Amazon, Waterstones and WH Smith