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That Kind of Madness

The year is 1995. I’m walking in front of the White House in D.C. with a new friend from a Jewish Leadership Conference for teens. I am about to go to college in Boston to study journalism. I turn my head quickly and notice a one-woman display of placards talking about the government causing brain damage. A disheleved woman stands near them. She is shouting this nonsense. My friend Josh then turns to me and says, “I think she has brain damage.” We pass and he starts walking quickly. But something in me wanted to stop. Something resonated in me that day. It would only be less than a year before the madness would befall me. I thought about how society pushes the mentally ill outside the margins, even when it stares right in front of us. I knew I had to do something to change the conversation. Twenty years later, now stable and on medication, I started my blog. It is for the young girl just leaving the psych ward for the first time feeling scared, confused, and alone. This blog, A Mile a Minute, is a collection of my own and others’ experiences with mental health. The meaning behind the name is it is how people described my behavior when I was in a manic episode because I moved and talked fast.

 A Mile a Minute with Alexis Zinkerman is a blog for mental health journalism. I will give survival strategies, updates in mental health policy, feature personal stories from time to time, book reviews, author interviews, and other stuff. If you would like to be featured on this site or guest blog for me, please send me a message in the contact section. I will send you my editorial guidelines.

I am a writer and journalist. I write mental health journalism and personality profiles about the creative life on my other site. I used to cover hard news and features for newspapers and magazines in New England and Chicago. I have an undergraduate journalism degree with minors in English and political science, an MA in Writing, and an MLIS.  In 1996, while in my undergraduate studies, I was diagnosed with bipolar 1 disorder. I was studying at Simmons College in Boston and after several hospitalizations had to transfer to University of Hartford where I graduated from with high honors.

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