PRESCRIPTION: Write on paper a list of reasonable goals for the new year


Generic: Aspire to accomplish something you can see transpiring.

Stop “Write on paper a list of reasonable goals for the new year” and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as: the task feels too daunting (that’s ok), or you get a paper cut

Hello my dears,

management here, otherwise known as your humble narrator Emma Retina. It’s good to be back!  I hope all of you have been fairing the winter months well or spectacularly even!

More on your new prescription– The new year is upon us and I like to think of it as a large, premium quality canvas.  It’s  blank and ready for all of your new joys, laughs, let downs, bad/good surprises and new circumstances. I reflect on this last year’s “canvas” objectively in the sense that different parts of me interpret the portrait of 2014 differently.  Part of me sees a portrait of war and emotional famine.  Another part of me sees a hero’s journey standing up for herself and living her life strongly and honestly.  Yet another part sees a slapstick comedy and another sees a love story.  It’s as if we look on last year’s portrait through a prism.

What are the different versions of your 2014?  Please email us and tell us!  We will incorporate it into a specific publication for portraits of 2014.  Send all submissions to


Inpatient Asylum Press

Contemporary Asylum News:

Stop blaming mental health for gun violence.

“The shooting deaths of two New York police officers in Brooklyn on Dec. 20 has again brought gun violence into the national conversation.

NYPD Commissioner Bratton places flowers at a makeshift memorial where one day earlier two police officers were fatally shot in the Brooklyn borough of New York

And as with many senseless and sensational events involving guns, the search for “why” has zeroed in on mental health. We read that the man believed to be the shooter, Ismaaiyl Brinsley, had an undiagnosed mental illness. Last month, when a 14-year-old student killed himself and four classmates in Marysville, Wash., security analyst Anthony Roman predictably called for changes in the mental health system on MSNBC. After the mass shooting at the University of California at Santa Barbara, Mel Robbins, writing for CNN, argued that blame lay not with the National Rifle Association, but with “the shooter and the mental health serves he did or didn’t get.”

This obsession with mental health as the root cause of gun violence is not only silly; it’s dangerous.”

Read further here

Running From Crazy


A documentary by Mariel Hemingway about the serious mental health problems she and her family have suffered.  There have been seven suicides in her family including her grandfather one of America’s most loved authors Ernest Hemingway.  Is madness a legacy in some families?

In Our Own Voices

This is the beginning of a novella by Nick Ellis who suffers from Schizoaffective Disorder.

The Real Yellow

Scene 1

(Various “primates of the news-age”—namely, folks in blue and gray wool suits going about their business in the street. Angry, congested traffic outside with horns beeping and general rabble. Lights up on a smoke-shop, whose picture window betrays these aforementioned aspects. Crowd of men smoking. Shop splits stage with street. Talk of “electoral votes” among other things. Innumerous rings of smoke cloud the room, with one moping and the rest genial.)

Street Vendor: Store front, bargain window sale of lightest humor!

Johnson: The audacity of some of these fellas.

Richards:  What thinks we of the new mandate?

Others: The mandate, the mandate, etc.

Johnson: A frail man’s mistake, is all.

Richards: You bet!

(On the street. All in golden light.)

Mother: Pans and bloomers; grocer’s, groomers. (to mailman) Dropping off.

Child: Pick me up!

Mother: New route, spank?

Mailman: A route blank.

Mother: This paper—tanks in China, mortar-bombs in powder strewn Bethlehem. What’s the world made of?

Child: Clay, clay!

(In the smoke-shop)

Johnson: You’d think the world was made of clay, the way things are.

(Richards blows a stream of smoke across a poker-table)

Richards: Yes, things are always some way.

Others: Here, here. Always a way, etc.

Richards: Like these mandates, and the electoral votes. They gotta way.

Others: Win ‘em over, buy your way, etc.

Johnson: You ask my wife, and she’ll tell you, eh? There’s certainly a way with things. Even love’s got a way.

(On the street)

Mother: You’re always so… punctual.

Mailman: The mail’s got a life of its own. I just hand the stuff over.

Mother: (dreamily) Oh, you do more than that. You make my day.

Mailman: A shining stone on Abbey Way, that’s you.

Child: (breaking silence, pejoratively) And you’re the king of France!


Scene 2

(Two crooning over a waffle, at a booth of red leather. Forks poised. The proprietor, Sam, to enter on skates over check-square linoleum. The two seem to remember where they are, and sit at attention.)

Sam: Any good?

Boy: Could choke.

(Girl fakes choking)

Sam: (aside with gesture) A joker.

Sam: (taking out a notebook and licking pencil-tip) “Plenty forth, to loins and Rome to build a day.” (skates away)

Boy: (bewildered) Sure, Sam.

Girl: (“recovering”) Nearly dead, a stroke.

Boy: Of luck.

Girl: (dryly) I’m in stiches. (noticing his wandering gaze) Eyes to waffle, mister.

Boy: (brandishes fork like a gun) Smoke and shooter.

Girl: You wouldn’t!

Sam: (from behind a bar) A way to treat the gal.

Girl: You’d have me die.

Boy: Don’t be so hysterical.

(Silence. Girl holds gaze on Boy, who distractedly takes a bite)


(Light fades, a honky saxophone tune)


Scene 3

(A paved, empty street at dusk. A sixty-seven Ford parked downstage right. “Johnny Cash” and “Ringo Starr” exit bar, silhouettes against dying red horizon. Heard in background: “Freeze ‘em man, this one’s a runner.” A burlesque, antebellum dream. A gun shot and gleaming red blood on the ground.)

Ringo: I’m a goner.

Johnny: They’re at us again! You’re not going nowhere.

Ringo: (winces and cries “God!”)

Johnny: A stricken chord—those bastards. (fires back aimlessly)

Ringo: (somewhat raspy) They’ve pulled another one over our eyes, John. And well-performed.

Johnny: A brave contention. Here’s your marksman! (fires)

(A crowd appears up right, snapping fingers a la West Side Story)

Johnny: (firing rapidly from behind Ford)

Ringo: A wild crowd. Save yourself, Johnny.

Johnny: They’re not so bad.

(Johnny gets hit twice and falls to the ground).

(A general rabble, fade out.)


Scene 4

(The single room of “The Aloha House”, a clapboard shack by the sea. Amidst one hell of a rainstorm. The dull yellow lights are like an umbrella on the scene, not overpowering the lamplight from an ancient mosaic lamp, bedside. A letter lies open on the stand. The radio plays something with a slide guitar. The two talk, from opposite sides of the bed, through tin cans.)

Vera: Things are fine here.

Paul: And are you, Vera?

Vera: Fine? Why don’t you tell me. You like to do the telling.

Paul: It’s too sticky out for these—these riddles.

Vera: (with airs) Play along, you child.

Paul: Next we’ll be sending each other doves from Avon.

Vera: In France? Should we break it off? That’s long distance.

Paul: (rolling Vera’s side of the bed and striking a pose) My darling.

(The two up and dance to the music).

Paul: Did you even read my letter?

Vera: Some other time. Here’s to wishing life would never come to a close.

(The two fall on the bed and quickly scuffle under the sheets.)

This is a video submission from Eric Boechler

I myself have struggled with chronic depression, anxiety, night terrors and crippling grief.

I have a very good friend whom I have been close with since I was 8 years old, at 19 he was diagnosed with schizophrenia.

Watching him fall apart has been incredibly difficult and I can’t even begin to articulate in a simple manner what it has been like to see someone once so whole and full of life, fragment so violently.

Most of his family and friends have alienated him from their lives, but I have stayed close to him through the years, seeing every vibrant and shadowy expression of his condition and the heart breaking implications it has for his future.


<p><a href=”″>Luna</a&gt; from <a href=”″>Eric Boechler</a> on <a href=””>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

Luna seize the path before me, whispered in smoke for a dying wish, the clock’s grown afraid, so Luna ticks…. ticks… ticks.

The feeling I intended it to evoke and the imagery and concepts I used were wholly inspired by my own suffering and struggles and those of my dear friend.

Asylum Art

A submission from Sami Jenkins

unnamed unnamed (3) unnamed (2) unnamed (1)



Alright, my artwork is kind of all over the place but I paint or draw how I feel, so sometimes they are a bit dark.

These are direct in relationship to the times I’ve messed up somehow and ruined everything.


Submissions from Robert Dahlberg

Mr.Kellar’s Farm

unnamed (6)

A Dream of Vermilion

unnamed (4)

Floral Egg

unnamed (5)


The answer to last page’s riddle was Your name

Riddle Me This- The more you have of me the less you see