AN author who suffers from mental illness is hoping his first book will inspire other sufferers to tell their story.
Mark Magrs has suffered from mental problems for more than 13 years, and recently penned Too Much Information, looking at the harsh reality of mental illness and its devastating effects.
It was eight years ago when the 35-year-old was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, which causes him to go through severe mood swings.
The qualified teacher writes about how the condition has affected his life, and of the frustration he feels at not being able to get a job as a secondary teacher, even though he is qualified.
Mr Magrs, who lives with his wife Ann, 30, and their five-month-old son Toby in South Shields, said: "For too long, mental illness has been a taboo subject. I want to dispel a few myths. If you say to people you're mentally ill, they assume you're crackers.
"When I first started getting panic attacks I didn't know what it was, and you don't want to tell anyone cause they'll think you're crazy.
"But I've found talking about it helps, and for me, writing this book was very therapeutic.
"Hopefully it will help people because they will realise they are not the only ones suffering."
Mr Magrs hopes the book, published by Chipmunkapublishing, will encourage other people to talk or write about their experiences with mental illness and its treatment.
The book contains an adult theme and very strong language, and isn't suitable for children.
Mr Magrs added: "I haven't pulled any punches, so people should know that before they read it, but I hope it will help other sufferers."
The former radio producer for Century Radio recently won the Northern Writers Award by New Writing North.
Chipmunkapublishing is the world's first Mental Health Publisher. It gives people with mental illness a voice so that they can have the opportunity and positive mindset to make a full recovery.