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Erin Khar Books In Order

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Strung Out: One Last Hit and Other Lies That Nearly Killed Me (2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Erin Khar
Erin Khar is the author of a memoir about her fifteen year long battle with opiate addiction which explores the very reason of why people do drugs in the first place, casting light on the larger opiate crisis, written with the intention to destigmatize the topic of drug addiction.

Erin writes about such topics like mental health, addiction, relationships, recovery, infertility, self care, and her undying love for Beverly Hills, 90210. This last is a series that she has watched with her son quite a lot, herself identifying and relating to Dylan McKay and Kelly Taylor. She loves, lives, and writes in New York City and sometimes other cities as well.

Erin has had a passion for books and writing going as far back as I can remember. She was an early reader, beginning by the age of three. By the time she entered second grade, she was starting to take books off her parents’ bookshelves. She loved writing, communicating through words, and crafting narratives, however she didn’t actually think she was qualified to be a writer.

One habit she began when she was a kid and has kept up her whole life was documenting her days and the world all around in. it can mean taking random notes on your phone, journaling, letters or emails, voice recordings, and even photographs. What she has taken in, recorded, and processed in different ways has informed her writing. Erin is incredibly grateful that she developed such a habit from an early age. It gave her the gift of having some primary sources to draw from while she was writing “Strung Out”, however it also informs her fiction writing too.

Before she became a professional writer, and then author, Erin worked in some different fields. She worked in the film industry as a wardrobe stylist and later as a production coordinator. She worked for a nonprofit organization as a case manager for transition-age youth (ages 14-24), many of whom were runaways and who were experiencing homelessness. She also founded and ran her own clothing line.

Erin began using at the age of eight, when she began having real depression and a lot of suicidal ideation. The relief she had when she took the first pill, was incredible. She felt she needed something that would dampen down the intensity of emotion. It also allowed her to function in ways that made it seem she had it all together.

The times during her teen years and when she was a young woman when she was not on drugs are when she would seem to be the most out of control. That is when people would notice that things were wrong. This is when her parents sent her to therapy when people would intervene because she would lose total control once the drugs weren’t there.

At one point, she was going to begin the narrative right in the middle of her addiction, then in backstory where necessary. She played around with the structure a lot. Before she signed with her agent, she worked with somebody on her proposal and she suggested that Erin begin with a prologue in the present day. At this time, her son had just asked her if she had ever used drugs, and she was trying to think about what the book’s journey was, and realized that it was to answer his question. That is the entire arc.

It was a nice way to contain it and allow her own current voice to come into chapters without it seeming unnatural. She was able to capture her own voice at different times in her life even while she still brought in the voice that has had enough time and distance to gain some perspective. Erin didn’t want it to only be her at different ages running amok without her grounding voice of her today.

Her work’s been featured a lot of places including Cosmonauts Avenue, Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, SELF, The Manifest-Station, Redbook, HuffPost, Good Housekeeping, Esquire, and Salon. She has a weekly advice column, called Ask Erin, which is published on Ravishly.

Erin was the recipient of a 2012 Eric Hoffer Editor’s Choice Prize for “Last House at the End of the Street,” which was published in the anthology Best New Writing 2012.

“Strung Out: One Last Hit and Other Lies That Nearly Killed Me” is Erin’s memoir that was released in the year 2020. Khar sheds some light on the opioid crisis and gives a voice to the more than two million people in America that currently fighting with this addiction.

Growing up in LA, Erin Khar hid behind her picture-perfect childhood that was filled with outstanding grades, horseback riding, and a popular group of friends. After first experimenting with her grandma’s expired painkillers, she began using heroin at the age of thirteen. The drug allowed her to escape from pressures of being perfect and suppress all of the heavy feelings she wasn’t able to understand.

This fiercely honest memoir explores just how heroin shaped every aspect of her life for the next fifteen years and details the many different lies that she told herself, as well as others, about her drug use. With enormous wisdom and heart, she displays how the stigma and shame surrounding addiction, which fuels deceit and denial, is so often what keeps addicts from getting the help that they need. There isn’t one path to recovery, and for Khar, it was during motherhood that she found the self-forgiveness and inner strength to quit using heroin and battle for her life.

With this memoir, Erin delivers a book that is a life-affirming story of resilience while also being a gripping investigation into the psychology of addiction and just why somebody would turn to opioids to start with. This is a compassionate accounting of her illness and is surely going to be the gold standard for women writing about their heroin addiction. Readers found this to be a deeply emotional and moving read that challenges our preconceived ideas about what addiction looks like. Here is a story that Erin needed to tell and the rest of this country needed to listen to.

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