Comedian Jessica Holmes on her new memoir, and how to laugh in the face of depression

Holmes joins Tom Power live in the q studio to talk about her new memoir, in which she opens up about her struggles with mental illness.
Depression The Comedy: A Tale of Perseverance is out now. (Raincoast Books)

Laughter and depression may not exactly go hand-in-hand, but that doesn't mean that people in the business of being funny are any less likely to struggle with mental health. Just ask Jessica Holmes, who's had a very successful career in comedy, making a name for herself on Royal Canadian Air Farce, opening for comedic giants such as Jerry Seinfeld and Ellen DeGeneres, and even MC'ing an event for Oprah Winfrey.

In spite of her success, Holmes still found herself in an uphill struggle with her mental health. She was falling out of love with her work and losing motivation in her personal life before she was finally diagnosed with depression. Now, she's written a book about that journey, Depression The Comedy: A Tale of Perseverance. It might not sound like a barrel of laughs, but Holmes is living testament to the idea that even the most painful situation can be funny with a bit of time. She joins Tom Power live in the q studio in Toronto to talk about her new book and her journey. 

Produced by Vanessa Nigro

Comedian Jessica Holmes with Tom Power in the q studio in Toronto, Ont. (Vivian Rashotte/CBC)


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