“The Fault in our Stars” had a huge opening weekend at the box office this weekend.
The adaptation of the best-selling novel by John Green follows a young teen diagnosed with cancer who goes about living her life as normally as she can.
Though the book is inspired by a young woman who lost her battle with thyroid cancer, the story is a work of fiction.
Recently, we caught up with Green and asked about his decision to write a fictional book about cancer.
To research the book, Green says he spoke with a lot of people familiar with the disease, reading a lot of material on the subject.
“It was very important to me to talk to a lot of people who were living with cancer or who had children, other family members, die of cancer,” said Green. “I also talked to a lot of oncologists and I read a lot about the disease.I read a lot of memoirs, textbooks about the disease so that I could try to understand it.”
Ultimately, Greene says his decision behind writing the book was to write about illness.
“I guess I wanted to show that people living with illness are also doing many other things,” Green told us. “They aren’t entirely defined by their illness or by their disability. A lot of times I think that, from the outside, maybe we imagine sick people as being defined by their illness or as being simply, merely sick. Particularly people who are dying. My experience has always been, that the people who are chronically ill are also many other things. They’re capable of love and they have all the same desires as other people. Their lives are every bit as rich and complex and important and meaningful as any others.”
“One of the really difficult things about doing this is that it can be socially isolating,” Green added. “So in addition to having to deal with the physical effects of illness and disability you also have to deal with the social stigma and that’s really unfortunate.”
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.