Fiction. I’m addicted to it. I think about it. I dream it. I went to college for it. It’s been the monkey on my back for as long as I can remember. It’s cost me money I couldn’t spare and sleep I needed. Thanks to electronic books, my stash has gotten cheaper and easier to move, but it’s also easier to hide from concerned eyes. My pusher deals to me online now and doesn’t even need TOR to do it.
Many experts believe in a genetic tendency to addiction, so I blame my ancestors. Or maybe it’s my mother’s fault for reading to me every night long before I could read. But looking back, I recognize the signs of the addiction in her, so I forgive her. I don’t think she could help herself any more than I can. The gene pool was already tainted.
It was bad enough when I was only addicted to reading fiction, but that was simply a gateway drug for me. Now I’ve moved on to the hard stuff—writing fiction. The high is higher, but the lows are lower. My husband tries to talk to me, to reach me, but I’m too far gone. I wave him off and move deeper into the world of the words on the screen before me. If only I had stuck to reading, maybe I would have had a chance of recovery one day, but now I fear it’s too late.
My closest friends are now other writing addicts. They’re everywhere—in your county, in your town, on your street. I didn’t know they were there until I started down this path and now I find them at every book fair and every library. I find them in the online communities (read “drug dens”) that have sprung up to enable us in our addiction. We enter in the morning, coffee or tea in hand, and emerge bleary-eyed to crawl into bed at night.
Like most users, I deluded myself when I started. I thought I could stop after the first book. I really did. The thrill of holding that first paperback with my name on it was indescribable, but as with most substances, after a while the thrill died down. So I did it again. And again—always chasing that high and running from the lows between releases. Now the desire for more just keeps coming. I fear it’s too late for me now. I’m lost.
You say you’re thinking about writing a book? Do yourself a favor and just say NO while you still can!
Okay, only kidding. It’s not as bad as all that. Go ahead, have a little taste. See what it’s like. It’s a real rush and you can stop whenever you want. Come on—just one sentence, one paragraph, one page…