MOUNT VERNON — New areas of publication have opened up doors for many people who previously wouldn’t have been published in the past. So is the case of Mount Vernon native Dr. Jeannine Jannot.
Jannot, who now lives and works near Atlanta, Georgia, went to Mount Vernon High School and graduated in 1982. Her parents Ron and Connie Jannot still live in the Mount Vernon area.
She went off to study psychology, earned a master degree in school psychology from Ohio State University before going on to receive a doctorate in child and development psychology from the University of Connecticut. She now works part time as a college professor and provides academic coaching for students and parents at The Balanced Student.
Jannot has self-published her book “The Disintegrating Student: Super Smart and Falling Apart.” In it, she explores the reasons why many students start to fall apart in high school and advises parents on ways to help them. This includes why successful students, from all backgrounds, start to have falling grades, scattered work, and emotional issues. Jannot identifies the skill deficits and counterproductive behavior common in these students and provides tips to get them back on track.
She said she wrote it because she had concerns about the well-being of students she worked with as a school psychologist.
“I was surprised and dismayed by the struggles so many students face, both in and out of the classroom,” She said, “I also came to realize that we are raising the most stressed-out, psychologically-fragile generation in history, while parents, educators and society seemed unable to help these kids, despite having the best intentions.”
When it came down to getting it published, Jannot said time was an issue. Self publishing, unlike traditional publishing, can have a completed book published, at least in digital form, in a few days time.
“I had something to share but I’m not an ‘author’ in the traditional sense,” she said. It took Jannot around seven months to write the book and then another two years before the book was published; come November it will be three years since she started on her book. That time was spent meeting with her editor and finalizing everything before putting it up online to sell on July 1 of this year.
The book was published independently through Amazon, a new way authors, and aspiring writers, can get their work out into the world. Amazon provides Kindle Direct Publishing to the author to be able to self-publish their work for Kindle and paperback. The site provides easy step-by-step instructions for every step along the process, from formatting to cover art to help with rights and pricing.
“The KDP self-publishing is a very easy process with lots of support built in,” Jannot said. “I did everything myself, but did have a professional developmental editor to make the book more polished – I would highly recommend that.”
She said the other aspects — proofreading, formatting, cover design — are all cumbersome and challenging, but doable. Proficiency in Microsoft Word is a must, she said. She had to learn a lot more than she ever thought she would need to know.
“The key is to publish a book that is indistinguishable from a publishing house book – professional, not amateurish,” she said.
Jannot said that she wanted to provide a look at what she does in the coaching session but have it reach a wider audience.
“It’s expensive to hire a coach,” Jannot said. The tools she provided to help understand why students start to struggle have been a beneficial tool for parents, and even students.
“I achieved what I wanted to do,” she said about how the book has been received. It lays out the pieces to the puzzle, she said, and it starts the conversation.
The book has reached a wide audience from its platform on Amazon and with marketing through Jannot’s website. Feedback from the book has been widely positive with reviewers labeling it “a must read,” “pertinent and practical” and “a brilliant, real-world parent handbook.”
The book is receiving a national release after being noticed by a friend of a friend. Jannot said that friend, who has her own public relations company, was so moved by the book that she offered to do the release in order to get word out.
Jeannine Jannot will be hosting a book event at Paragraphs Bookstore in Mount Vernon on Friday Oct. 11 from 6:30 to 8 p.m.