Writing Away the Stigma

Ten Courageous Writers Tell True Stories About Depression, Bipolar Disorder, ADHD, OCD, PTSD & more

Lee Gutkind and Chad Vogler

One in four American adults will endure the trials of a mental health condition this year, and more than half will experience one in their lifetime. Yet the stigma of mental illness remains, leading many to face their difficulties in shame and silence. In this collection, ten writers confront the stigma of mental illness head-on, bravely telling stories of devastating depressions, persistent traumas, overwhelming compulsions, and more.

E-book version available now through Amazon.


Table of Contents

Foreword: A Common, Treatable Disease Joni Schwager
Introduction: Writing Away the Stigma: The Workshop, the Rewards, and the Cost Lee Gutkind
The Runaway Bunny Andrea Laurion
The Happiest Days of Our Lives Rebecca College
White Rabbit Matthew Newton
The Course of the River Mary Elizabeth Rauktis
Choke Zoë Hooley
Blood Work Yona Harvey
Winter Break Lauren Shapiro
Forgive Me Caroline Wolff


Rebecca College

Rebecca College is a freelance writer who focuses on architecture, design, and regional development. A glass artist and sculptor in a past... read more

Tahirah Alexander Green

Born in Washington, DC, Tahirah Alexander Green currently resides in Pittsburgh, where she serves as a Compass AmeriCorps  member. She... read more

Lee Gutkind

Lee Gutkind, recognized by Vanity Fair as “the Godfather behind creative nonfiction,” is the founder and editor of Creative... read more

Yona Harvey

Yona Harvey is the author of the poetry collection Hemming the Water, winner of Claremont Graduate University’s 2014 Kate Tufts... read more

Zoë Hooley

A native of the Midwest, Zoë Hooley relocated to Pittsburgh with a posse of friends and their small media company, where she works as... read more

Andrea Laurion

Andrea Laurion is a writer, improviser, and performer. Her writing has appeared in such places as the Rumpus, McSweeney’s, Forbes.com... read more

Matthew Newton

Matthew Newton is a writer and journalist from western Pennsylvania. He has written essays, many about class and culture, for Guernica,... read more

Mary Elizabeth Rauktis

Mary Elizabeth Rauktis is a native of the city of Pittsburgh, a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, and a professor in the School of... read more

Linda K. Schmitmeyer

Linda K. Schmitmeyer is a freelance writer and editor who lives with her husband, Steve, in western Pennsylvania; they have three adult... read more

Joni Schwager

Joni Schwager has been the executive director of the Staunton Farm Foundation since 1998. The Foundation’s focus is on rural... read more

Lauren Shapiro

Lauren Shapiro holds degrees from Brown University and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She is the author of the poetry collection Easy... read more

Chad Vogler

Chad Vogler (co-editor) is a graduate of the MFA program at the University of Pittsburgh and has been an assistant editor at the Creative... read more

Caroline Wolff

After writing about current events for Foreign Policy and Slate magazines in Washington, DC, Caroline Wolff came to the University of... read more