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Posts Tagged ‘mental illness’

I have just read an amazing short memoir called ‘Last-Ditch Attempt’ by Rebecca Epstein in Griffith Review. From her bio, Rebecca is a Masters student (in non fiction writing) at Iowa State University, and she also has Bipolar Disorder.

In this memoir, Rebecca describes her mental illness beginning in her teens, and how it was eventually diagnosed in her early adulthood. It not only includes vivid descriptions of how it feels to her to be hypomanic and manic, but also shows glimpses of her experience of the medical system: her psychiatrist, hospitalisation, and being both on and off medication. She writes beautifully, and given that she wrote at least some of it in a hypomanic state, the writing at times reflects the thought disorder and pressure of someone whose mood is elevated.

This is the best piece of writing I’ve come across that helps to capture the experience of mania and you can read it online here, or in print in GriffthREVIEW33 ‘Such is Life’.

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I don’t often link to other blog posts, but I have just read this one on writing and depression by James Bradley, on his City of Tongues blog (it was published in Griffith Review Edition 23: Essentially Creative). I think it is fascinating reading for not only writers, but also mental health professionals and those who have suffered from mental illness. I think he uses his skills as a writer to very eloquently and clearly discuss his own experience both of depression and recovery.

Definitely worth a read.

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