Just found out on Twitter that Ned Vizzini has died. At first I didn’t believe, because Twitter is always killing off people but there are two tweets from BuzzFeedBooks and a fellow writer with Ned on a project called Last Resort. It’s amazing to read the outpouring of love and support for him from authors, writers, and readers.
I read his book It’s Kind of a Funny Story when I was a teenager and found it to be so visceral and honest about all the suffocating pressures teens feel to be perfect and high-achieving and accepted. It was also a window into what it’s like to suffer from depression and knowing Ned was writing from a personal experience, made it all the more powerful. The sincerity of his character is something I noted after reading the book and have been trying to emulate in my own writing. Ned was also just inspiration as someone who had so many writing success at such a young age, publishing essays in the New York Times and a book at 19. He went on to work on more novels and scriptwriting and speaking on writing to young audiences.
A tragic loss for his family and the community, but Ned will live on through the words he’s written and the people who knew him.