Page last updated at 10:53 GMT, Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Depression 'cripples' chick-lit author Keyes

Marian Keyes
Keyes' latest book was published in October

Best-selling "chick-lit" author Marian Keyes has revealed she is suffering from "crippling depression".

The Irish writer, whose books have sold millions of copies, told fans it has left her unable to write, read, sleep or even talk to people.

"The worst thing is that I feel it will never end," the 46-year-old wrote on her website.

Keyes is best known for her romantic comedies Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married and Watermelon.

'Living hell'

She told fans: "I'm aware that these are terrible times and that there are people out there who have been so ruined by the current economic climate that they've lost the roof over their heads and every day is a battle for basic survival and I wish I could make their pain go away.

"But although I'm blessed enough to have a roof over my head, I still feel like I'm living in hell.

"I can't eat, I can't sleep, I can't write, I can't read, I can't talk to people. The worst thing is that I feel it will never end.

"I know lots of people don't believe it, but depression is an illness, but unlike say, a broken leg, you don't know when it'll get better."

Dozens of readers left messages of support on her website.

Keyes, who has battled depression in the past, often deals with dark themes, such as domestic violence and mental illness, in her comedy novels.

Her latest work, The Brightest Star in the Sky, was published in October.

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