“Coleridge was a drug addict. Poe was an alcoholic. Marlowe was killed by a man whom he was treacherously trying to stab. Pope took money to keep a woman’s name out of a satire, then wrote a piece so that she could still be recognized, anyhow. Chatterton killed himself. Byron was accused of incest. Do you still want to be a writer -and if so, why?” – Bennett Cerf
Some of the world’s most famous writers have been addicts, abusing almost anything, from coffee and alcohol to sex and drugs. They often wrote about their addictions, about the way the human conditions is degraded by them.
Here’s a short list of famous writers and their vices: Continue reading Famous Writers and Their Addictions
Contemporary literature puts a lot of emphasis on the “inspired by true events.” The fictional, which by definition means invented, imagined into existence, sustained by the magic of the arts, no longer interests the modern day reader. Literature must have, at its foundations, a bit of the real world, an element from an author’s biography, as if better understanding reality can only be done when reading about “true events.”
But what is true? What is real? What happened? What didn’t? Continue reading Are Autobiographies Literature?
It is said art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable. Some books achieve that with ease, their characters haunting our thoughts long after we’ve finished reading a book. Apparently, those characters are so endearing that psychologists have decided to name actual psychological disorders after them. They could have named them after themselves, as they tend to do in other fields.
Continue reading Ten Psychological Conditions Named After Literary Characters
Psychologists believe narcissists to be more creative than other people.
Narcissists are better artists.
And there probably never was and never will be a more narcissistic person than Oscar Wilde.
Yup. The first rock star was a writer. Continue reading The First Rockstar (And How to Deal With Haters)
More than 350 million people around the world suffer from depression. Less than half of them ever receive treatment. Antidepressants have become the most prescribed type of medicine in the United States. In the United Kingdom, one in six adults has been under anti depressive medication at least once.
But is it that difficult to conceive that maybe the problems of the mind can be interpreted as crisis of the soul? Maybe music, pets, dancing, or creating art are better than medication when dealing with depression. Maybe therapists should advise people on buying a dog or take a dancing class. Continue reading Feeling Depressed? Read.