It’s with a heavy heart that I type this little post about the literary world’s latest loss. I know it may seem strange to mourn someone who a) I didn’t know and b) only contributed a handful of books to the industry, but I really enjoyed Ned Vizzini’s writing and the story of his passing was extremely sad.
I remember reading It’s Kind of a Funny Story for the first time. I related to the main character Craig, a depressed and semi-suicidal teenager, to an insane degree. His explanation of the “cycling” thoughts that spring up from depression was spot on. I felt validated, even if some people might characterize Craig as “whiny.” He was in high school… of course he whined. When I got Lawrence to read the book, I think it really helped him understand how my brain works (or doesn’t, depending on who you ask).
The other reason I loved the book was knowing that Mr. Vizzini wrote it from a similar situation. It was uplifting that he was able to take something that crushes so many and make it into a strength. It’s beyond heartbreaking to know that he succumbed to the illness that is depression, and my thoughts are with his surviving wife and child.
Despite the awful circumstances surrounding his departure from our world, I choose to celebrate his life and what he brought to mine.
Rest in peace, Ned Vizzini. You will not be forgotten.