I began writing Heroine after a school visit to an area particularly hard-hit by the opioid epidemic. Over lunch, staff confessed to me that nearly everyone in town had been impacted by addiction, either as a personal struggle or through that of a loved one. Their students not only suffered alongside friends and family but also viewed leaving town – through college or military enlistment – as one of the few options of escape from the ever-widening net of opioids.
Those most entangled in that net are the addicts themselves. Opioids offer a solace from trauma – physical, mental, or emotional – that, once discovered, is difficult to relinquish.
I chose to write Heroine from the point of view of an addict because the slippery slope of addiction can begin with a single pill prescribed by a doctor, carrying no hint of illegality or allusions of shame. Many of us have been written that prescription or given those pills by hands that we trust.
It could be you. It could be me. It could be any of us.
Does every painkiller prescription lead to a person flushing their stash of heroin down the toilet while their mother pounds on the bathroom door?
No. But Mickey’s did. And if you’re there with her when she’s crouching behind home plate, hopefully you’ll be with her on the bathroom floor as well.
About the Author
Mindy McGinnis is the author of Not a Drop to Drink and its companion, In a Handful of Dust, as well as This Darkness Mine, The Female of the Species, Given to the Sea, and the Edgar Award-winning novel A Madness So Discreet. A magna cum laude graduate of Otterbein University with a BA in English literature and religion, Mindy lives in Ohio. You can visit her online at www.mindymcginnis.com.