Laura Hillenbrand

From MEpedia, a crowd-sourced encyclopedia of ME and CFS science and history

Laura Hillenbrand is author of two award-winning, best-selling books: Seabiscuit: An American Legend, about a champion race horse who became a national legend during the Great Depression, and Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption, about a promising track Olympian who suffered years as a WWII POW in Japan.[1] Both books were adapted into acclaimed movies.[2][3]

Since she was 19 years old, Hillenbrand has lived with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS).[4] She is open about her illness, writing "A Sudden Illness," a poignant 2003 essay in the The New Yorker about the onset and her long confinement as she slowly recovered.[5] At the same time, when asked in a 2011 The New York Times interview whether she would ever write an autobiography, she said: "I have to spend so much time being vigilant on my body and worrying about my body and suffering. So much of my own autobiography would be about my health, and I don’t know if I want to spend myfessional life thinking about that. I write to escape my circumstances."[6]

Notable Quote[edit | edit source]

"Fatigue is what we experience, but it is what a match is to an atomic bomb."[7]

Articles[edit | edit source]

  • 2001, "Despite Illness, Author Pushed to the Finish Line" by Jennifer Frey of the Washington Post[8]
  • 2003, "A Sudden Illness," by Laura Hillenbrand, The New Yorker, Jul 7, 2003 issue, "Personal history about the writer’s experience with chronic fatigue syndrome."[9]
  • 2010, "Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Celebrated Author's Untold Tale" in Elle magazine by Aaron Gell.[10]
  • 2010, "Laura Hillenbrand releases new book while fighting chronic fatigue syndrome" The Washington Post By: Monica Hesse. "Then there are the more recent wins. The time she managed to take an entire shower standing up. The time she and her husband, Borden Flanagan, drove to the alley at the end of their block so she could see something other than the cemetery behind their yard, and the time, a few weeks later, that they drove all the way to Starbucks. Sat in the parking lot. Drove home."[11]
  • 2011, "An Author Escapes From Chronic Fatigue Syndrome" The New York Times By: Tara Parker-Pope
  • 2014, "The Unbreakable Laura Hillenbrand," The New York Times By: Wil S. Hylton "Since 1987, Hillenbrand has been sick with chronic fatigue syndrome, which has mostly confined her indoors for the last quarter century."[12]
  • 2016, "Leaving frailty behind: A conversation with Laura Hillenbrand" by Paul Costello[13]

Talks and interviews[edit | edit source]

HHS/CFSAC[edit | edit source]

Online presence[edit | edit source]

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]