For the full interview, see it on Full Stop.
Published on June 9, 2021.
I first learned about Vince Granata’s memoir Everything Is Fine through my friend who is friends with one of Vince’s friends, and when I hopped on the phone with Vince, we naturally figured out we had yet another friend in common. Even though Vince now lives in Texas, he spent his 20s in the Boston area, where I have lived most of my life. Everyone knows everyone through someone else in Massachusetts it seems. It’s a small world.
It’s a small enough world that even before I read Vince’s searing memoir about the murder of his mother at the hands of his schizophrenic brother, I remembered hearing about the news story. I’ve long been someone interested in reading about the darker aspects of life, and Vince’s memoir might just be one of the darkest books I have ever read. There is nothing easy or light about reading Vince’s family’s story. And yet, while Vince’s book does not shy away from some of the hardest – the hardest? – things a family can grapple with, his memoir is one of the most empathetic, kind, and human works I have ever read. There is also a history of schizophrenia in my own family, and Vince’s book provided the nuanced and thoughtful approach to a devastating mental illness that is absent in so many pop culture narratives. I was thrilled to get the chance to speak with Vince and ask him about what it took to write this remarkable work.