AUTHOR Marian Keyes has revealed how Twitter helped her overcome depression.
The 49-year-old, who has battled depression in the past, said exchanging tweets with some of her 40,000 followers on Twitter had proved therapeutic.
"In a way I think it was Twitter that brought me out of the darkness, because I could engage with people without having to leave the house.
"Do you know what I hate having to do, I hate having to say goodbye to people, I find it absolutely exhausting and incredibly boring, but with Twitter you can a have a laugh, you can have the craic, you can have great conversations but then you can cut it dead without having to do that awful thing of kissing people and 'Stay well, goodbye and good luck', the 20 minutes at the front door," said Marian Keyes.
Some 32,000 tweets later, she claims it is still the medium of her choice.
"They say social media isn't always good, but it was good for me. It is very good for me," she added.
Giving her first radio interview in several years, the best-selling novelist told the Newstalk's Tom Dunne how she began writing while she was drinking heavily.
But it wasn't until she had attended rehab that it flourished into a series of million-selling novels.
Now 49, it was during her 20s that she slipped into serious alcoholism.
However she said her taste of drink went back to her schooldays.
"I was fond of alcohol very young. I started drinking at 14 but I didn't drink all the time and got good results in my Leaving Cert, but (drinking) was very important to me at the weekend," she said.
Talking about her success, she revealed how she had one of her parents to thank for her ability to get words on paper.
"I got my work ethic from my dad and I'm very proud of it, and I'm very grateful I have it and I'm glad that it never stopped, that I don't just think 'ah sure I can send out any old rubbish and they'll read it'. I try as hard now as I always did."
And describing what success meant to her mother, she replied:
"Oh my God, it was really weird because I feel in a way like it's not fair because she should have been the one that was getting the plaudits because she is fantastic. But also, she was very cross with me for the 'ridin' in the books. Like, she was appalled at the first book, Watermelon."
Last year the Dun Laoghaire- based bestseller knocked Fifty Shades Of Grey off the top of the Irish best-sellers with book The Mystery Of Mercy Close.