Little Things
Little Things Podcast
Do We Need To Suffer For Our Art?

Do We Need To Suffer For Our Art?

I talk to "Emotional Support Lady" Allison Raskin about the myth of the suffering artist, her new book "Overthinking About You" and how to keep your brain healthy in a creative career.

I’m so excited to introduce an audio portion of this Substack where I’ll be having casual conversations with creatives who inspire me. (And hopefully the audio will get better each episode! Thanks for your patience)

To start it off, I talked to writer, podcaster and mental health advocate Allison Raskin. Allison is a hilarious writer who also prioritizes her wellbeing, AND, she just published a book, Overthinking About You: Navigating Romantic Relationships When You Have Anxiety, OCD, and/or Depression, so of course I couldn’t wait to talk to her! And we had a blast catching up.

Buy it at a bookstore or website near you!

I first met Allison when we were both writers, producers, and actors at BuzzFeed. Since then, beyond being a hilarious creator and NYT bestselling author, Allison has created a wonderful mental health community through her Substack and Instagram, Emotional Support Lady. She posts stick-figure drawings about anxiety and mental health, and there are so many times they show up on my feed and I think THAT’S EXACTLY HOW I FEEL! For example, she posted the below drawing 5 days ago, which touches on what I just wrote about from Mexico City a few weeks ago! (#3: Live Out Your Values) Kismet!

Some highlights from our conversation:

  • Allison talks about giving up self-deprecating humor in an effort to stop contributing to her own suffering for the sake of comedy.

  • Why is art that brings joy considered less valuable? Why can’t guilty pleasures just be… pleasures?

  • The anxiety of the entertainment industry. We discuss how to set goals that are tangible in a career where you have such little control over your own success. Allison also discusses fears that she’s “peaked” since she’s lost followers since the BuzzFeed days. How do you keep pursuing a career when you fear that the best days are behind you, and/or when social media invites constant comparison to how everybody else is doing?

  • Allison shares what it was like to be left by her fiancé mid-way through writing a book about romantic relationships. AND, falling in love again and having her new partner read the tell-all book about her life.

You can follow Allison’s Substack here:

Is there a topic you want me to cover next? A person you’d like me to interview? Comment on this post or just respond to this email!

Little Things is a reader-supported publication. If you’re reading this and you don’t subscribe, please consider dropping your email in the box below so you never miss a post.

Hi! I’m Ali, a television writer, filmmaker, actor, teacher, and Yogi. You can find my work on my website, and my face on my Instagram. Thank you so much your support!