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He took amphetamines like M&Ms, to the point of actually keeping them in a bowl in his kitchen.Dick was very up-front, then and later in life, about his use of drugs.
Some of these are very good and others less so, but even my least inspired work hews to a fairly high professional standard. Liebling, another hero, once said, “I’m better than anybody faster, and faster than anybody better.” Of course, that kind of facility can’t completely be attributed to industry, poverty, or ability. It’s the 10,000 miligram rule that makes the magic happen. Writing pulp sci-fi novels in the 1950s and 1960s earned him barely enough to eat.
And in terms of sheer volume, I have everybody beat. He lived in poverty for most of his life, his mother paying his rent.
How often do you lose track of the location of your keys or phone? How often do you wait until the last possible minute to tackle big projects? These things I’ve thought defining traits of my personality, and my own great failings, listed as symptoms to an identifiable disorder.
Powering through a career in marketing, starting and running my own company, all while raising kids and keeping a creative writing life going – no problem.
It’s worth noting that writers from Dick onwards have turned to speed not for the pleasure of it, since there is none, but rather so that they could work harder, and better. All these performance enhancers are necessary to the level of production the blog economy requires.
In a given week I may be called upon to produce, on short notice and in fair copy, essays, features, blog posts, Facebook posts, tweets, interviews, how-to pieces, listicles, confessionals, city guides, recipes, slash fiction, memoirs, and whatever else will pay enough to cover my scrapple tab.There is a certain kind of writing that comes only via combustion. They lack even the romantic connotations of opium, brandy, and other traditional specifics.The words just come out, as if from somebody else, and you forget who wrote what, or why. Since you get adderall from a doctor and can use it without losing all your teeth, non-speed freak society makes a distinction between it and the “crank” used by overworked criminals. Even though I am a [self-employed] chiropractor, I don’t believe in just “going natural” for the sake of it, to drive home a philosophical point, as you journaled. Actually that might be because most of them are children, but still. Your experience echoes mine and is confirmed by family and friends. My senior year in High School, I found that I was getting a C in AP calculus. As an English teacher in my 20’s, each week I confronted a stack of essays from 180 students that required comments and grades. Life is hard, but it doesn’t have to be this hard every day. If everything around me is near perfect, perhaps the problem is me. After a month, I see that the medicine is not as strong as when I first began. In checking my daughter’s grades recently, I found that she was getting behind in her language arts class due to reading requirements. When I asked her what was happening, she explained how she hasn’t turned in her reading logs. Now, with the help of adderall, those other things I do to manage my mental focus finally seem to work. I continued to get A’s on every test, forgot everything within a month and took a C in the class. A few months ago, sitting in my home office, struggling with the projects in front of me,accepted that something wasn’t right. Good earnings in a freelance career doing what I love. I couldn’t even imagine a better set-up than what I had. I wrote and completed a novel draft in a single month, one day clocking in 12,000 words. From what I read online it sounds like it may take me some time to find the correct dose for me. Superwoman might be unsustainable, but perhaps I don’t need to go back all the way to the beginning. When she finds a new series she likes, she can read three a week. We have to write down our page count after every reading session. They should just give me credit for reading the books and not worry about the logs.” There is already a certain way I say her name, almost as a family joke, when she forgets to put on pajamas, or loses her phone again, can’t sit still. I did find that it loses effectiveness if I take it everyday, so I try not to take it on the weekends or when I’m out with a cold or something. But before, even when I exercised and ate well and took breaks, I still struggled each day. I’m looking forward to hearing more about your journey with ADD. And then there’s Dick, a genius whose considerable corpus was written when he was out of his mind on amphetamines.I feel like I understand Dick, sharing his bad habits as I do, and with them a consequent existential unease. In my drawer right now are sixteen generic Provigil mailed to me in brown envelopes from the Punjab; half a dozen vaguely ovoid, sky-blue Craigslist adderall; a single hoarded Nuvigil, the writerly equivalent of Super Soldier serum; a dugout filled to the brim with the kind of hydroponic sativa that is invariably described by its growers as “buzzy”and “cerebral”; and of course all these stimulants are buttressed and supported by mug after mug of potent Irving Farm coffee. I couldn’t sit through a single essay without losing focus and having to restart at the beginning. Until I realized I spend days, years, spinning at high speed and racking up accomplishments, but barely aware of the life I created for myself. Just go and hear what the doctor has to say, I told myself. Royally pissed off that I could get an A on every test but still be marked the dreaded “average”, I marched into my class and demanded to know what was the issue. “You ace the tests but you haven’t turned in a single homework assignment.” “Can’t we just base my grades off the tests? You have to do the work.” Sit still and do row after row of repetitive problem. That stack of papers would sit on the corner of my desk for two days as I worked up the courage to confront it. I finally have all my big checklist items ticked off. My husband’s glorious health insurance provided me a way out.