The book described the night terrors she had suffered throughout her life, her earlier beliefs that she had mentally caused the deaths of thousands of people, and the often-inhumane treatment she had received at mental health facilities.
Saks said in an interview Monday that she would use at least some of the prize money to extend her memoir by interviewing other people with schizophrenia who are doing well.
“When I’m traveling, people always say, ‘You’re unique.’ Well, I’m really not,” she said. “I would just like to tell other people’s stories as well to further give people hope and understanding. . . . Some of their stories are just so inspirational.”
The awards have been given for nearly three decades by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation “to celebrate and support exceptional men and women of all ages and in all fields who dream, explore, take risks, invent, and build in new and unexpected ways in the interest of shaping a better future for us all.”