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Thursday, February 6, 2014

A Recap of Month 1, Writing for HuffPo



In the last month, I’ve had the honor and pleasure of writing regularly for The Huffington Post. For the moment, I’m writing on a smattering of topics that include mental health, men’s health, and the arts. Since not everyone is on Facebook, Twitter, or G+ I’ve decided to post parts of the first two articles here plus one bonus, which is the German translation of the first article that made it all the way to HuffPo Deutschland. In the coming months I'll be writing about the intersection of faith and mental health, more on the business side of the arts, and some TBDs. 
Thanks for reading this first month... and here goes: 
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Real Men Talk About Their Feelings -- For Real
Men are willing to talk about the size of their prostate glands, or how much Viagra they're allowed to take, but they're still not willing to be open about their mental health.
If men want to live long, healthy and productive lives it's absolutely crucial that the dialogue surrounding men's mental health has to change.
I lost my father Douglas to suicide in 2009. Douglas lost his father Haakon to suicide in 1966. Each suffered from undiagnosed mental disorders and each suffered in silence because of the stigma surrounding men talking about and getting help for mental illness.
Haakon was dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder after having been shot down in Hamburg, Germany, in 1941. Douglas may have been clinically depressed for a very long time, but... READ MORE HERE
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How to Create a Long-Term Legacy -- As the Protagonist of Your Own Story
When writing a play or book, there's always a least one character who qualifies as the story's protagonist. Some like to think of the protagonist as the hero of the story. For others, the protagonist is the chief, the principal or the title role. At some point very near to the beginning of the play, this main character should clearly state or imply what it is that they want and how they intend to get it. To amplify the drama and to make for a compelling tale for the audience or reader, it is our job as the writer to beat up on the protagonist and put obstacles in their way of getting what they want.
When writing scenes and dialogue, it is imperative to think about how each component furthers the storyline along. Does each written moment move the protagonist closer or further away from their goal or initial want? (There are no right answers here, just as long as you know where you're going.) But just because you can write snappy dialogue between four characters at once, or you're great at writing comedic foils, it doesn't necessarily mean it belongs in the piece you're writing. If you can make it flow, great, but shoving a square peg into a round hole doesn't do anyone any good.
The same goes with life and your legacy. The work you take on, the people you spend time with, the relationships that you enter -- do any or all of these further your personal story along, or are they a hinderance? READ MORE HERE
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Depression: Echte Kerle reden über ihre Gefühle
Für Männer ist die Größe ihrer Prostata kein Tabuthema, auch nicht wie viele Viagras sie nehmen dürfen, aber wehe es geht um ihre geistige Gesundheit - da machen sie dicht.
Dabei ist genau dies der Schlüssel zu einem langen und produktiven Leben und daher muss sich die ganze Art ändern, mit der wir über die psychische Probleme von Männern reden. 
Mein Vater Douglas hat 2009 Selbstmord begangen. Sein Vater Haakon beging 1966 Selbstmord. Beide litten unter nicht diagnostizierten psychischen Erkrankungen und beide versuchten dies mit sich selbst auszumachen. Die Gesellschaft ließ nicht zu, dass Männer über Geisteskrankheiten redeten, geschweigen denn Hilfe dafür suchten.
Haakon war im ersten Weltkrieg 1941 über Hamburg abgeschossen worden und litt deswegen an einem Posttraumatischen Stresssyndrom. Ich glaube, dass Douglas schon lange klinisch depressiv war, aber dass meine Mutter die Scheidung einreichte, war der Auslöser (nicht der Grund) dafür, dass er sich das Leben nahm. READ MORE HERE