Tuesday, January 22, 2013
This Novel Will Kill Me
To all the writers out there thinking about writing their first novel, I hope you’re ready to hate it. First you have to write the damn thing. Everyone seems to think this is the hardest part about getting a novel out, but quite honestly, it’s the only enjoyable aspect of the process. When you are writing a novel your creative juices are flowing, anything is possible, and you get to watch a world of your own creation unfold in front of your eyes. Yes, finishing the thing is hard for some, but my only advice to you is to stop hesitating and get it over with. There will be plenty of time in the editing process to make it better.
I finished my first novel in the summer of 2011, at the age of 21. I have now edited it several times, and I think this thing is finally ready for someone to put in front of the eyes of the Twilight-loving masses. Will I make much money off of it? Probably not, but once you've put hundreds of hours into something, eventually you just want to get it out there. I can only hope those who read it will appreciate it as I once did, and will again, but at the moment I can’t stand to read the thing. Perhaps that’s a bit harsh, because I’m still quite proud of having written it, but reading your own words at such length can be a maddening endeavor.
This is not to say you shouldn't write a novel, because if you have a solid idea, then you should. However, I think it is only fair to warn you what you’re getting yourself into. I let my novel sit untouched for almost a year, because I simply couldn't work on it anymore. In the time I learned a lot about writing through writing short stories and articles, and it made it possible for me to feel confident going back to the project. In that effect, I encourage you to take a break and work on your writing if you are beginning to feel like you've exhausted your resources. Don’t be so fucking headstrong that you think your writing isn't being appreciated because of snobbery. It might be true, but refusing to critique yourself for that reason sure as hell isn't going to help you progress. I love my novel, and I hate my novel, but at least I have a novel to have feelings about now.
Here Be An Excerpt:
Chapter One of On Three, We Rush.
It comes on slow. For the first twenty minutes it feels like you just smoked a lot of marijuana. After it's worked its way through the circulatory system, it spreads through your senses like cancer, but it always hits the ears first. That's what makes it unlike any other drug, the auditory effect. Your ears begin to tingle, and every few minutes or so, then more frequently, you get the bass. The bass is exactly what it sounds like.
Most people get tense when the bass comes. After a quick unexpected jerk of the nerves in your neck you hear a very deep bass note with a Doppler effect on it. The sound sinks in; along with an overwhelming feeling of vitality the first few times you take it. As the sound ends you notice everything in sight wander downwards. Then your vision returns back to reality, within a snap of your fingers.
It's difficult to walk when you take Formula, but if you can walk it intensifies the high you achieve. The circulating blood spreads the drug through the body, and it remains in your system shooting out its symptoms like a serial killer seeking more and more victims to keep the high going. The drug is so potent that you can feel it entering new parts of the blood stream while it takes over. Formula is a vengeful mistress, and she demands all of your attention. It begins to captivate your mind.
This reason alone is what created what came to be known as the “zombie walk.” Obviously you can only pace your living room so many times to keep the blood moving before it becomes tedious. Thus, users often wander the city without aim. On any given day you can walk down any street in the city and see a dozen people or so who look just like anyone else roaming the street, but with a face that is entirely glazed over. They are searching for something. They are lost in a world they once were once a part of.
The searching can dominate your experience, if you let it. After the audio sequence begins, all of your senses can become heightened. A breeze will feel like the caress of a woman, the sun seems to be a spotlight that is only shining on you, and every smell, well; it seems to be just a little bit better.
All of this plays a role in what we refer to as “searching.” Searching is the culmination of all these heightened senses into the unavoidable desire to locate, and understand, the origin of every unusual observation. This is only increased when the hearing changes again. This change is drastic.
This time it's not just a projected noise that your brain manifests, but everything you hear, and the way you hear it, changes entirely. This part varies from person to person. Often times people's hearing is completely inverted, treble switches to bass and vice versa, but for others everything they hear seems to become somewhat musical. It's like that soundtrack to your day that you always desired.
That's how it was for me right then. It was a couple hours into my “soak,” as we called the high you get from Formula. Ironically it was raining.
Every drop sounded like the beat of a drum. The drips slipping off of my cheap aluminum roofing were the persistent beat of a snare drum, with an orchestra of various other percussions in the background. I could hear the crickets out there enjoying the unseasonal shower, and each creek echoed in the depths of my cranium. It took on the sound of two pieces of hard wood clapping together, over and over.
After the ears begin to go back to normal, and most of the other senses are restored, you feel pretty numb. This happens a few hours in. You don’t just feel numb to the touch, but within your mind as well. Suddenly nothing is very important to you, your personality becomes neutral, and you feel whole heartedly like a leaf in the wind. Some people say that's why Formula caught on so quickly. Not only do you get a unique high, but in the end you have no concerns. Everything is fine, just fine.
No, that's not what got me on the stuff, if that's what you're thinking. I am an experience enthusiast you might say. I like to see what's next. Once I've gone up a level, I want to see what's behind door number two.
I had done acid, shrooms, coke, ecstasy, and more. Formula was just the next logical step. The funny thing about Formula is that it's not even habit forming, chemically. There is no chemical in the drug that should have any addictive qualities to it, but maybe that's what makes it so frequently used; the promise of freedom. Somehow the fact that people knew they would never go through withdrawals made them believe they could do it forever.
People were saying the drug got smuggled in from Mexico. There were a lot of different opinions on where it originated. Some said that China was sending it into the country to dumb us down, or slowly poison us. Ridiculous. Others thought that some Nicaraguan drug cartel was producing it. Either way it was all over the place, and it was dangerously cheap.
At four dollars a hit, most users taking two over the course of a day, that's roughly a 300 dollar a month habit. That really isn’t much worse than your coffee addiction, if you think about it. People were saying the government was trying to crack down on it. The word on the street was that they'd done secret missions in Central America to burn down the fields popping up that grew the drug's main ingredient.
The plant’s called float, well, that's what we called it. It has some scientific name I can't remember right now. Float is from a genetically engineered plant that the U.S. government accidentally developed while trying to create plants that would yield in all seasons. It seemed like someone must have gotten a hold of some seeds.
Everything was a rumor, and no one knew much, but everyone talked like they had it all figured out. Regardless, Formula had become its own subculture, and you couldn't understand what that means until you were in it. People would rather dull their senses than face the fact that their life was going nowhere, and fast.