Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Five books written by authors in the grip of mental illness

Jeff Somers is the author of Lifers, the Avery Cates series from Orbit Books, Chum from Tyrus Books, and We Are Not Good People from Pocket/Gallery. He has published over thirty short stories as well. One of Somers's five top titles by writers who managed to write enduring books even though they were in the grip of mental illness, as shared at B&N Reads:
Save Me the Waltz, by Zelda Fitzgerald

Zelda Fitzgerald is a tragic figure, a classic example a person with “high spirits” secretly suffering from a severe mental disorder. When she was finally diagnosed with schizophrenia in the early 1930s, she spent time at a clinic, where she experienced a rush of creativity and wrote Save Me the Waltz as part of her therapy. Her husband, F. Scott Fitzgerald, wasn’t pleased with it because it covered much of the same semi-autobiographical material as the novel he was working on (which would eventually become Tender is the Night), and he forced Zelda to revise the book extensively before he would allow her to publish. The failure of the book and the mean-spirited reaction from her husband left Zelda crushed; she didn’t return to writing until after Scott’s death, and was working on a book when she died tragically in a fire at her hospital.
Read about the other entries on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue