All posts tagged: depression

Amy Koppelman talks about her very personal book–how the feelings & emotions are psychologically resonate, but the story is fiction, plus Amanda Seyfried starring in A MOUTHFUL OF AIR, postpartum depression, and so much more

By Leslie Lindsay Stunning and elegant portrayal of the rawness of postpartum depression, told in elegant and authentic, sparse prose ~WRITERS INTERVIEWING WRITERS~ ALWAYS WITH A BOOK SOON TO BE A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE STARRING AMANDA SEYFRIED, from Sony Pictures October 2021! Leslie Lindsay & Amy Koppelman in conversation Amy Koppelman is a writer, director, and producer and is a graduate of Columbia’s MFA program. Her writing has appeared in The New York Observer and Lilith. She lives in New York City with her husband and two children, and is the author of the novels, A Mouthful of Air, I Smile Back, and Hesitation Wounds. ABOUT A MOUTHFUL OF AIR: It seems strange to give A MOUTHFUL OF AIR (Two Dollar Radio, August 17 2021) such lavish praise, because the subject matter is really quite dark, but the execution of this near-autofiction is just so gorgeously rendered, I felt truly amazed and almost tremulous in its company. Compared to classic feminist works such as Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper and Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar, A MOUTHFUL …

This book! Women everywhere must read Ada Calhoun’s WHY WE CAN’T SLEEP about the new midlife crisis of GenX women, plus how we’re a resilient bunch, reading list, and so much more

By Leslie Lindsay  A searing exploration of stresses that keep GenX women up at night (literally and metaphorically), I raced through this book, which completely resonated. So, so grateful to have received an early copy of WHY WE CAN’T SLEEP: Women’s New Midlife Crisis (Grove Atlantic, 2020) by memoirist/journalist Ada Calhoun. I was feeling especially down the day it arrived–you know, that existential angst–and was immediately gleeful after reading the book’s description: we are a group of women with outward markers of success and personal fulfillment, but still feel lousy. Work and marriage, kids, houses, parents, all of that…we might look ‘successful’ and ‘happy,’ but underneath of that is well, a struggle. Money isn’t very flow-y, work isn’t as easy or satisfying. The marriage gets dull. The kids zap your energy. And what about all of that ‘aspirational labor?’ What then? WHY WE CAN’T SLEEP mostly focuses on women in GenerationX (GenX), that is, those born roughly between 1967-1980, with a median birth year of 1976. I’m sitting right there. And I feel this, deeply. Calhoun delves into a …

The intersection of art and madness, of never giving up, children’s literature, & so much more in Laurel Davis Huber’s THE VELVETEEN DAUGHTER

By Leslie Lindsay Gorgeous rendering of the true story of a famous author mother and her equally, if not more famous visual artist daughter, THE VELVETEEN DAUGHTER will capture and delight audiences of historical fiction.  Winner of the 2017 Langum Prize for American Historical Fiction The intersection of art and madness has always intrigued–and so when I came across THE VELVETEEN DAUGHTER (SWP, 2017) I knew I needed to read it. And I’m so glad I did. Told from multiple, alternating first-person POVs, readers get a luminous insight into the lives of Margery Williams Bianco, the author of the children’s classic, THE VELVETEEN RABBIT, and her daughter, child prodigy artist, Pamela Bianco.  Reading historical fiction almost always brings to the surface lives I had little or no knowledge of, and is always such a delight. Of course, I knew of THE VELVETEEN RABBIT, but never really gave its author much thought. Huber writes with such a tender hand, bringing this tale of motherhood, creativity, and mental illness to light; I loved every minute. “. . . a masterpiece. . . . Incandescent, pitch-perfect, and destined …

With stunning grace and precision, openness, and empathy, Sarah Fawn Montogomery talks about her outstanding memoir & her struggles with mental illness

By Leslie Lindsay  Brilliant and incredible debut work of nonfiction, about the author’s life with myriad mental health diagnoses, QUITE MAD, should be required reading for all, but especially those who have been touched with mental illness, either in a personal or professional manner.  With searing intelligence, unflinching honesty, and a breadth of research, Sarah Fawn Montgomery has left me in complete awe. QUITE MAD (Mad Creek Books, 2018) is a gorgeous melding of literary journalism meets memoir and is focused mostly on women in the U.S. and their relationship with mental illness. But. Sarah Fawn Montgomery had a challenging family of origin, too. Much of this tumultuous upbringing is chronicled throughout the pages–delving into both of her parents’ backgrounds, their own anxiety, their desire to adopt a houseful of ‘special needs’ kids (abandoned at birth, drug-addicted babies, and those who otherwise weren’t cut out for foster care and their subsequent diagnoses). I read with interest, with disbelief, with shock. “A wrenching account of a difficult upbringing and a chaotic brain that will leave readers marveling at the author’s …

WeekEND Reading: Jessica Teich on her sublime memoir, which is more of a ‘shared autobiography,’ touching on very tragic & real issues of suicide, rape, victimology, & teaching our daughters self-preservation skills

By Leslie Lindsay  At once a story of heartache and trauma, interwoven with a bit of mystery following the suicide of a not-quite schoolmate, fellow Rhodes woman, Lacey Cooper-Reynolds, THE FUTURE TENSE OF JOY is an interior memoir at the core with very strong writing. It was an honor to be awarded the exclusive and prestigious Rhodes scholarship, particularly as a woman. In THE FUTURE TENSE OF JOY, Teich sets out to render those old gender stereotypes outdated, while  simultaneously coming to terms with the fact that she is, indeed, worthy of the award. Meanwhile, things in Jessica’s past bubble to the surface. She suffered horrendous abuse in her youth at the hands of a 30-year old male dancer. Routinely, Joe would sexually and physically assault her, threatening death if she told anyone. Yet, she succumbs, and later, attempts to put the past behind her. Fast-forward some years and Jessica is married, a mother, and consumed with dread. OCD-like symptoms explode. She can’t sleep; she worries. When she comes across an obituary in the Oxonian, …

Fiction Friday: Annie’s Pissed

By Leslie Lindsay Still working on revisions here–so thought I’d share a bit of what I polished up this week.  This is from my novel-in-progress.  Here goes:                   “I shifted on her couch, a plump Pottery Barn reject from ten years ago and fingered the fringe pillow, braiding the strands into tiny cornrows.  Jackie crossed her legs, revealing a new pair of shoes (three-inch orange and red color-block heels) and folded her hands on her lap.  How can the woman not have varicose veins, I mused.  I continued with my diatribe.                 I was pissed and I don’t like feeling pissed.  In fact, the word itself made me cringe.  My nose crinkled and the word came out all nasally.  It’s not how I talk, and certainly not how I think.  ‘Being pissed’ sounds uneducated and uncouth.  But it’s a feeling, nonetheless.  I shrugged.              I wondered almost hourly what Steve was doing.  Who he was with.  What he looked like.  It pissed me off.  I wanted to fight these feelings away, tend to my own family, …