Monday, May 20, 2013

Better Living Through Chemistry; or, What The Hell Happened Last Fall

NOTE: The following blog post 

  1. is long;
  2. serves only as the first part of a longer thing;
  3. assumes that someone cares enough, or is at least curious enough, about Dr Rotwang! and his life-stuff to know that anything even HAPPENED last fall; and
  4. believe it or not, actually does have to do with gaming.
You've been disclaimed. Disclaimed. Er, it's been disclo--YOU'VE BEEN WARNED.

...Damn, Brethren and Sistren. I don't even know where to begin, so I'll just pick it up at the prologue.

I am a creative badass. I'm hilarious, I'm wise, I'm charming and I'm good at re-interpreting things to give them a new life or at least a new way to use them. These aspects describe a whole metric donkton of people on Earth, and are very common amongst the people I consider kin -- you guys, fellow gamers, nerds, dreamers, awesome folks. I do not think this makes me better than anybody else, but I do know that it makes me happy.

Over the last few years all of that slowed down, dimming gradually, and in the fall of 2012 flared, exploded and blew away.

Maybe you saw it coming. Some of you, I think, did just that -- considerate and kind people who said things like "I worry about you, Doc". I did not, do not and never will expect anyone to give much of a damn because I'm not that kind of egotist. But if you did see it coming, then at least you can say, "Called it. Toldja so."

I dropped off the gaming radar for a long time, didn't I? I was blogging even less than usual, and when I did post something it was angry, sad, frustrated stuff. Then, however, there was a burst of energy -- you may recall it or you may not, but all of a sudden I was pumping stuff out like a machine made for pumping stuff out and seemed really, really excited about something

And then...

-- poof

So what happened?

Here's what happened, mates:

That's Adderall. I got blue ones, though.

Now...just in case you think this is going where you think this is going, let me tell you straight up that it's not. In fact, and I can say this with full confidence, being given a prescription for Adderall was one of the best things that ever happened to me. And the key word is prescription, as in not fucking around with potent medicine because I am not some kind of goddamned idiot. Are we clear? Of course we are, you guys are smart.

Look, it's obvious I have ADD or something, but I finally bit the bullet last year and asked my doc about the possibility of treatment with a drug. Back in March she said yes, but because my former health insurance company didn't have their shit together, I didn't get my first fill until, like, September. 

At first, I couldn't tell that anything was happening. I felt a little bit jittery, and my mouth was dry; just little things. Then one day...


I was organized. I was doing chores. I was focused and increasingly competent at things that mattered to me. I was happy. I loved life.

Then I tried something, and that something was writing a cyberpunk story.

Some of you know me from a while back, and some of you know that I've always had, like, this cyberpunk...thing up in my noggin, and that I could never quite get hold of it and that it remained nebulous, formless, a pulsating haze of neon and sweat and New Wave music swirling around some crazy-ass notions about whatever the fuck it is that humans are. 

Goes back about 18 years, that stuff.

I started to write a story in my setting, with my ideas, with that feel, and it thundered right out of me. Monorail bullet train held back for virtual ages, suddenly on a track, focused, making sense as it shot out of my head and screamed, "THIS IS WHAT I'VE BEEN TRYING TO SAY FOR YEARS!"

And as I wrote it, I posted it online: "254.13.26", a rough but succinct condensation of that cyberpunk haze. Thematic.Stylish. Fast-paced. 

Was it good? Hell, I don't know. It felt good, and I knew that it wasn't perfect but that it had legs and was a hell of a sketch to start from. And, most of all, it was the first real coherent expression of aaaaaaaaaalllllllll that cyberpunky whatzits that had been in my head, refusing to coalesce into something that made sense inside my head and possibly even outside of it.All of it in just over a week. 

Then, just as suddenly, I took it down. Gone. Zip. Playing cagey with it all, being giddy and hinting at stuff. What the hell? 

My lunch hour is over, so I need to pause...but there's more.

Come back if you wanna. Soon, too, which is kind of odd for me, you must agree.