Mental Health

All Was Well: How Popular Media Renders Mental Illness Invisible

July 27, 2017 // 12 Comments

Imagine with me for a moment. Let’s say you’re a 13 year old girl, a little awkward, a little lonely, trying to find yourself in the world, so you run to TV shows and books, taking every line, word, and letter to heart. You find yourself (and who you want to be) in these strange worlds, but not quite everything. Missing from these realities you find yourself lost in, is something that’s becoming a frightening and familiar part of teenagers’ lives. Mental illness. Anyone //

Beyond the DSM-V: Representing Mental Illness in Fanfiction

December 1, 2015 // 4 Comments

I read a lot of superhero fanfic, and therefore I read a lot of fic featuring depictions of PTSD and depression. In a Marvel blockbuster, the focus is usually on plot before people. Because of an ensemble cast, there is only enough time to hint at the psychological complexities of an individual character. So we see Tony Stark have a few panic attacks and be really flippant about it. In a scene cut from the first Avengers, we see Steve Rogers engaging in mundane tasks (riding the subway, sitting //

Five Psychological Benefits of Writing Fanfiction

October 21, 2015 // 5 Comments

In 2009 I began writing fanfiction as a means to jumpstart my creative process. I was so in love with the characters of the anime I was addicted to (Yu Yu Hakusho, by the way) that I wanted desperately for there to be more of their adventures and world than the complete series offered me. Burning through the entire series in two weeks’ only left that hunger festering. I was writing the first draft of a novel at the time, in between jobs and attending college. When I could no longer fill my //