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Monday, 3 November 2014  |  Posted by Brenda Drake

Assorted_Uzi_Water_Guns_lgMentor Name: Erica Chapman

Mentee Name: Whitney Taylor


Category: Young Adult

Genre: Contemporary

Word Count: 64,000


17 year-old Zoloft expert Reggie Mason has depression down to a science. That is, until she meets Prozac poster kid Snake, whose adult responsibilities give her a second opinion on misery. Either they figure out what’s worth living for, or lose their sanity. If only life came with a warning label.


On pharmacy nights, I was the most miserable person on the planet. Okay, I’ll concede, that may be a slight exaggeration. I’m sure once upon a time there was some sad sack of a girl out there who suffered through monthly happy pill runs (see: prescription) and lengthy car rides to her mother singing some god-awful Christian melody. And I’m sure her misery, like my own, prided itself on being the most crippling in all the land (in this case, in all of suburbia).

But screw that girl.

She had her moment. My depression was happening present tense, in the distance between the parking space and the doors of CVS. In the sun dripping behind the warehouse across the street. In my mother’s off-key hum to the most repetitive song ever recorded. My depression was the unlimited kind, and I’d be damned if I let some notion of “you’re not the only one” make me feel guilty for being sad. Like sadness was measured in teaspoons and each person was only allowed a finite amount.

And sure, you could say I was infamous for rolling out the red carpet for sadness. But only because I didn’t want to contribute to the idea that certain emotions didn’t deserve to be noticed.

As the van shifted to park, part of me waited for the setting sun to incinerate everything completely. And that may have been a dramatic thing to let myself imagine, but I had a tendency to overdose on teaspoons.

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