The Genesis of
How did SPLIT: a life shared, living with Multiple Personality Disorder become a manuscript and story to share? Why did I want to write it? What was my catalyst?
I (and my system, it’s always all of us, even if I don’t say it) have always loved writing. It is a theme of healing that has been a cathartic tool, from our chaotic early teenage years to writing about loss and longing in my life now.
SPLIT started when a few years ago, I decided to revisit my love of writing and begin a novel. And, as many authors do, I modeled the main character on some aspects of my life. But – I didn’t like her (well, not enough anyway). She was missing something, what drove her was unclear. So, as an academic exercise, I decided I needed to write my memoir. It was supposed to be a tool that would help me get my "stuff" sorted so I could return to my novel, informed. I was sure it would be a much more compelling tale at that point.
I had no idea how the writing of my memoir would consume me. And it did! Ask my therapist – I couldn’t escape writing about my alters, how they lived and survived, and the relationship that I had with them through the years. There was lots of good fodder in my journals as I started to piecemeal the random words into a manuscript, and suddenly – surprisingly – I had a story. Over the past few years, I’ve had manuscript assessments and critiques that have really helped me to create a work that I believe, or I hope anyway, is of literary merit.
I have a simple goal for SPLIT. That it will stand as an encouragement in the mental health community. Instead of hiding our perceived stigma, through dissociation or isolation, and pretending we are stronger than we are (there are so many variations of that!), there is hope. And too, that families of those who struggle will learn to take care of themselves, find support and rest. It is a story for our time, about understanding who we are, accepting that, and finding hope.
And, in case you are wondering, I do plan to go back to my novel. The storyline and possible structure is unique and engaging. So eventually, I expect that will pop up on my radar to rewrite, and this time with a compelling main character!