Anna Nakamura (a nom de plume) wrote Altered States in an attempt to bring coherence to an experience of trauma and chaos. She chose to publish under a pseudonym to protect the identities of those in her story.

A difficulty in writing this story was her experience of crossing the always shifting boundary between telling her own story and that of another, especially given the stigma and shame attached to mental illness. She also realised we have yet to find language that expresses the reality of mental illness without diminishing its sufferers by viewing them through a lens of pity and horror. Perhaps the true horror of madness is that it’s an entirely reasonable response to the insanity of the world we’ve created. Anna is a contributing author to the Life Righting Collective’s This is how it is anthology.

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