>The Sylvia Plath Effect


Stuck inside my head with the thinking about the future blues again. Ohh, you’ve written this before – too many artists have succumbed that way. You need to back out of your own mind again. Think about Shakespeare, think about whatever it is you have to to take your mind off of what it is your thinking about. Then get back to me.

Write it down. Get it all out of your mind. Free the stuff bubbling within you. Talk to your best friend. An outside perspective will help you keep reality and illusion separate.

List of famous artists that couldn’t stop thinking and succumbed to the Sylvia Plath effect:
Ernest Hemingway
David Foster Wallace
Syvia Plath
Vincent Van Gogh
Ashile Gorky
Frida Kahlo
Mark Rothko

Not that I’m in any way close to killing myself. It’s just that if you don’t take a step back, outside of your own head every once in a while, either your personal life suffers, or your art suffers. Sometimes both, but usually the conflation between the two suggests you put more eggs into one basket. Deep breaths. Relief.

By Daniel Ryan Adler

Daniel Adler writes fiction and nonfiction and is finishing his MFA at University of South Carolina.

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