By The Way: Schizophrenia, What IS It?

Partially because I grew up in a birth family ravaged by the disease, I wrote a fantasy novel where I wanted the main character to have schizophrenia. This was in order to emphasize and reverberate the personal drama of the person and their family dealing with it against the dramatic tension of the plot. Making the internal stakes match the external ones.

More importantly, I wanted to portray that illness accurately and respectfully. People sometimes ask me what I mean by “accurately”. To answer that: Here* is a lecture that covers what schizophrenia is (and what it isn’t, which is far more prevalent in most shows/books).

Along these lines, I was interviewed by author Emma G. Rose, on her podcast, to talk about this very topic: Mental Health Tropes in Writing (although, the official title of the episode is Writing Mental Health Tropes, which inadvertently seems to signal approval. Please don’t be misled. In my opinion, most mental health tropes are neither good story-telling nor are they especially helpful to society at large).

Stay Safe,

*- 23:00 to 59:00 of the video is “Schizophrenia 101”; whereas, after that , his lecture
veers into solid biology, with a focus on bio-chemistry.

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