Ned Vizzini, 32, a popular young-adult author and television writer who wrote candidly and humorously about his struggles with depression, committed suicide Thursday in New York.
Mr. Vizzini jumped off the roof of his parents' home in Brooklyn, said his brother, Daniel.
New York City's medical examiner's office confirmed that Mr. Vizzini took his own life. Daniel Vizzini said his brother had battled mental illness for much of his life and had "taken a turn for the worse" in recent weeks.
Ned Vizzini's autobiographical novel It's Kind of a Funny Story was adapted into a feature film of the same name. A resident of Los Angeles in recent years, he was a prolific author of fiction and nonfiction and spoke around the country about mental health and the healing effects of writing. On his website, he recommended Andrew Solomon's The Noonday Demon and the Dalai Lama's The Art of Happiness to readers coping with depression.
"At his signings, countless kids would approach him to say that he changed their lives - he gave them hope," his longtime publisher, Alessandra Balzer of Balzer + Bray, said in a statement Friday.
The writer Judy Blume called him one of those people "who just touch your life in a certain way."
"I met him when he was a kid at some sort of get-together that [New York City Mayor Mike] Bloomberg was having," she said. "And he was this incredibly lively young man and I told him, 'I can't wait to see what you do.' "
It's Kind of a Funny Story was written in just a few weeks and published in 2006. Set in New York City, and 85 percent true, according to Mr. Vizzini, it told of an ambitious but overworked high school student who considers jumping off the Brooklyn Bridge and ends up in a psychiatric ward.
"So why am I depressed?" asks narrator Craig Gilner. "That's the million-dollar question, baby, the Tootsie Roll question; not even the owl knows the answer to that one. I don't know either. All I know is the chronology."
The movie version was released in 2010 and starred Zach Galifianakis and Emma Roberts.
His other books include Be More Chill and The Other Normals, both of which told of young people who feel like outsiders.
Mr. Vizzini is survived by his wife and one son. - AP