Amy Tan on Writing and Depression, and Using What is Beyond Our Ordinary Senses

Amy Tan-TED video

Amy Tan comments:

“I think I was pushed in a way to write this book (“The Hundred Secret Senses”) by certain spirits in my life. They’ve always been there.. to kick me in the ass to write….

“I know that this subject is fodder for ridicule…. But ultimately, I have to write what I have to write about, including the question of life continuing beyond our ordinary senses.” ////

“Some of it [depression] is probably biochemical, but I think it is also in my family tree. I didn’t do anything about it for a long time, because, like many people, I worried about altering my psyche with drugs.

“As a writer, I was especially concerned with that. … [She used Zoloft.] I needed help… I don’t believe that good writers are born through unhappiness.”

From Amy Tan – a brief profile.

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TED presentation: Amy Tan: Where does creativity hide?

Part of the transcript :

“And I’m going to do that also by looking at what I think is part of my creative process, which includes a number of things that happened, actually — the nothing started even earlier than the moment in which I’m creating something new. And that includes nature, and nurture, and what I refer to as nightmares.

“Now in the nature area, we look at whether or not we are innately equipped with something, perhaps in our brains, some abnormal chromosome that causes this muse-like effect.

“And some people would say that we’re born with it in some other means. And others, like my mother, would say that I get my material from past lives.

“Some people would also say that creativity may be a function of some other neurological quirk — van Gogh syndrome — that you have a little bit of, you know, psychosis, or depression.”

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Mental health and creative people is one of the main topics of my series of sites; see a list of some of the many posts: Mental Health Articles

Also see list of articles on Self Concept /Identity.


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