I don't know about everyone else, but I've been so busy this past week and a half I've barely had time to think. And much as I know the people who love me will worry about me doing too much, I'm pumped and exhausted at the same time. It reminds me of college.
I think college, for me, was an experiment in what a young body completely addicted to knowledge can do. I didn't just get satisfaction from all night cram sessions. I got an adrenaline rush every time I conquered the need for sleep, overcame constraints, and strolled into a 4 hour test with absolute confidence. I was hooked on pushing my brain the the limits. It was a high... an actual high.
I'm actually not sure, at this time of my life, if this was a good or bad thing. I've never really shaken that addiction. And it's possible it has hurt me in my career as a fiction writer, which is the only thing I have tackled in this life without-- so far-- success. I've published some short fiction and similar, but the Great American Novel eludes me still. My young adult novel does not suffer from neglect but I am, I believe, an overbearing parent with ridiculous expectations. And I research every tiny detail to the point of obsession.
I'll be honest... the high is still there. Like this past week, in a somewhat related foray into local and national politics, when I wrote a few quips that spread through the headquarters like wildfire and were picked up by everyone around me. MY words. It was heady and addictive and I felt smart, valued, validated.
I feel that rush when I write something, read it back, and get the giddy sense of resonance. When the words on the page feel so incredibly right my hair stands up. I get a similar feeling when I sketch or paint something... or create a graphic from nothing... or take a photograph that makes me pause for breath. I don't need drugs or alcohol. I've got journals and a computer.
So on this hurricane-heavy Saturday I submit to you: what's your natural high?