Depression Hates a Moving Target

THE BOOK: Depression Hates a Moving Target: How Running with My Dog Brought Me Back from the Brink


THE AUTHOR:  Nita Sweeney

THE EDITOR: Brenda Knight

THE PUBLISHER: Mango Publishing. Mango is an innovative independent publisher based in beautiful and sunny Miami, Florida. Their goal is to create high-quality books that explore new ideas and start conversations with readers. Their books seek to stretch the boundaries of our culture and get social waves flowing in new directions. Mango focuses on building a strong relationship with our authors, who are some of the freshest, most distinctive voices of our time.

Now in its fifth year, Mango is one of the fastest-growing publishers in the country.

SUMMARY: It’s never too late to chase your dreams! Before she discovered running, Nita Sweeney was 49-years-old, chronically depressed, occasionally manic, and unable to jog for more than 60 seconds at a time. Using exercise, Nita discovered an inner strength she didn’t know she possessed, and with the help of her canine companion, she found herself on the way to completing her first marathon. In her memoir, Sweeney shares how she faced emotional and physical challenges to finish the race and come back from the brink.

Nita SweeneyTHE BACK STORY: I was an unlikely marathoner. Nearly 50 years old, overweight, and suffering from the crippling depression of bipolar disorder, I was sitting on my sofa in my pajamas at noon on a weekday when a social media post caught my eye. Several of my middle-aged friends had taken up running! I’d already been dreaming about running – it felt like flying. The easy, floating feeling of the dream seduced me into believing that, like my friends, I too could run. I leashed up the dog for emotional support and began. Two and a half years later, I crossed the finish line at the Columbus Marathon.

Depression Hates a Moving Target: How Running with My Dog Brought Me Back from the Brink follows me from couch to marathon. In the story, I experience physical injuries, panic attacks, paranoia, thoughts of suicide, hypochondria, and every negative thought ever had by anyone who attempts the impossible. Through running, I faced many fears (bridges and boredom, for example), learned to cope with my bipolar symptoms using exercise, and discovered inner strength I didn’t know I possessed.

WHY THIS TITLE?: I have long used the motto, “Depression hates a moving target” to challenge myself and others to get out of bed, do the laundry, walk around the block, write one page, meditate for five minutes, or any other simple task to break the inertia caused by depression and grief. It seemed the perfect title for this story.

WHY WOULD SOMEONE WANT TO READ IT? There’s hope and help on the track: Anyone who has struggled with depression knows the ways the mind can defeat you. However, it is possible to transform yourself with the power of running. You may learn that you can endure more than you think, and that there’s no other therapy quite like pavement beneath your feet.

Depression Hates a Moving Target is a witty and poignant story of rediscovery. Whether you’re born to run or just looking for rebirth, you will:

– Be inspired by the powerful story of one woman?and her dog
– Cheer on Nita as she endures the challenges of a marathon and a mind in turmoil
– And discover the power of running to overcome obstacles

If you loved Let Your Mind Run, you’ll love Depression Hates a Moving Target: How Running with My Dog Brought Me Back from the Brink.


“Nita Sweeney’s vibrant memoir, Depression Hates a Moving Target, not only captures the runner’s mind, but shows how practice–whether in running, writing, or meditation–and finding a community can transform a life. Sweeney charts the ups and downs of her journey with searing and refreshing honesty. Her story will resonate with anyone looking for a way out of darkness.” —Natalie Goldberg, bestselling author of Writing Down the Bones and Let the Whole Thundering World Come Home

“Nita Sweeney’s Depression Hates a Moving Target is a gallant new memoir about persistence in the face of long odds. If you have an interest in long-distance running, this book has you covered. Dogs? Ditto. A love story? Absolutely! Nita Sweeney not only found a way to survive crippling depression, she created a way to thrive. The love of a good man, the love of a good dog, the love of running, and above all the love of oneself. Come along on this inspiring journey. It goes the distance and then some.” —Lee Martin, author of the Pulitzer Prize Finalist The Bright Forever

“Runners like Nita Sweeney don’t win fame and glory, but there are far more of them than there are Olympians. And their stories are just as inspirational. Yes, Sweeney somehow works up to the marathon distance, but it sure doesn’t come easy. It takes everything she’s got, especially when dark clouds gather overhead. And everything a husband, sister, and great friends can provide. Plus, one more thing, Morgan, the dog. He’s as good a coach and training partner as any runner has ever had.” —Amby Burfoot, winner, 1968 Boston Marathon, author, Run Forever, First Ladies of Running, and The Runner’s Guide to the Meaning of Life

AUTHOR PROFILE: After a decade of legal practice (and a major depressive episode), Nita turned in her shingle for a fast-writing pen. People still ask legal questions, but she’s done her best to forget the answers. Instead of negotiating labor contracts for public agencies, she writes, and shares what she’s learned.

Nita’s articles, essays, and poems have appeared in Buddhist America, Dog World, Dog Fancy, Writer’s Journal, Country Living, Pitkin Review, Spring Street, The Taos News, WNBA-SF blog, and other newspapers and newsletters. She writes the blog, Bum Glue and publishes the monthly email, Write Now Newsletter.

She has been featured on,,,,,, and, in bp Magazine and Epoch Times, on the Word Carver and My Brain on Endorphins podcasts, and nominated for the Ohio Arts Council Governor’s Award. Her poem “Memorial” won the Dublin Arts Council’s Poet’s Choice Award and an early draft of her memoir, Depression Hates a Moving Target: How Running with My Dog Brought Me Back from the Brink, (previously titled Twenty-Six Point Freaking Two) was short-listed for the William Faulkner – William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition Award. The book is a #1 Amazon New Release in the “mood disorders,” “bipolar disorder,” and “running and jogging” categories.

Nita earned a journalism degree from The E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University, a law degree from The Ohio State University, and a Master of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing from Goddard College. For ten years, she studied with and assisted bestselling author Natalie Goldberg (Writing Down the Bones) at week-long writing workshops teaching the “rules of writing practice” and leading participants in sitting and walking meditation. Goldberg authorized Nita to teach “writing practice” and Nita has taught for nearly twenty years.

When she’s not writing and teaching, Nita runs. She has completed three full marathons, twenty-seven half marathons (in eighteen states), and more than eighty shorter races. Nita lives in central Ohio with her husband and biggest fan, Ed, and her yellow Labrador running partner, Scarlet the #ninetyninepercentgooddog.

AUTHOR COMMENTS: Finding a publisher for this book is a dream-come-true. If it helps one person find a way out of the bleakness of depression, my life purpose will be fulfilled.



Many bookstores in central Ohio carry the paperback. These include The Book Loft, Gramercy, Prologue, Barnes & Noble, Fleet Feet, and FrontRunner.

Check your local bookstore and if they don’t already, please ask them to stock it.

Many libraries also stock the book. If yours doesn’t, please ask them to buy it.


Most online outlets carry both the paperback and the ebook. Tantor Media purchased the audio rights and an audio book is forthcoming.

Nita’s Amazon affiliate link:

PRICE: The paperback retails for $18.99 but prices vary across outlets.












Published by


Recently retired after 35 years with the News & Advance newspaper in Lynchburg, VA, now re-inventing myself as a novelist/nonfiction writer and writing coach in Lake George, NY.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s