I was given the opportunity to briefly interview Ellen Forney, the extremely creative author of Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me: A Graphic Memoir.
You mention my experience (below, question 2) when I realized I was going to need to process my experience in comic form. That would have been a few years after my diagnosis. I had to wait a long time to tell my story publicly though, I just wasn’t ready to expose myself like that. Once I was stable though, I felt I needed to tell the story for myself, and for anyone struggling like I had that might benefit from my own experience.
2. I read in an article on Publisher’s Weekly, where you said of your bipolar disorder, “I remember it dawning on me, oh, I’m going to have to deal with this in a comic!” When I was reading your book; “Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo & Me” I felt like I was getting in your head. How does it feel to have so many people have insight into your mind, your life and your bipolarity?
It’s a little weird but I’m used to it, to a degree – I’ve been doing autobiographical comics for a long time. This is a significantly more personal story, of course. Two things: I’ve found that having my story out there has made me feel stronger; I definitely exposed myself but still, I was the one that put the story together, of course there were some things I decided were private.
3. I’d like to delve into your life as a bipolar comic, and artist. Would you say being bipolar has enhanced your creativity or are you creative despite it?
Who knows? It’s a part of who I am, I can’t really separate them.
Thank you so much to Ellen Forney!
The ever so fabulous International Bipolar Foundation (where I frequently guest post) is hosting a discussion and book signing with Ellen Forney October 3, 2013. If you’re in California (which I am not) check it out! For more details click here.