So, lets see If I can do this without sounding to over dramatic!
My dad left us when I was eight, not completely!, We, being my brother and I, saw him as much as he could manage when we were kids, now we see him as much as we can manage now we're adults, (you are??!!) Yes, now stop interrupting! (Sorry!)
Anyway!, It was then my insomnia kicked in, a psychologist once theorised that perhaps I was still waiting for him to come home from work, he had often worked late and I would lay in bed listening for him to come home! It got gradually worse as I got older, each year seemed to cost me another hours sleep, which in turn led to other problems, sleep related.
I've always been imaginative, very, very imaginative, so much so, that during a 'Mum to Son' pep talk on going out as an older teen and joining the 'Night Life' scene, she warned, "Drugs are out there Rich, you know that, your not stupid, but please, no matter what you try and where curiosity takes you, don't ever use acid, your imagination could never deal with it!", a promise I always kept, no matter what else I may have tried in my life.
As far as I can remember, my I first started writing at twelve, my first story being for my Grandfather and his Sister, the name of which complete escapes me!
The Second, however, I don't think I'll ever forget, I formed it in my head, on a quiet country lane, after finding a dead, (rabbit I think It had once been, animal, on the road, besides the opening to a dead field, the stalks of that years harvest having turned brown, waiting to be burnt away. In about ten minutes, and as I recall, It only ended up about ten pages long, I had my story, "The Killer Hedgehog!", yes, you read it right, killer hedgehog, I won't bore you with the details, although I may post a new version for fun some time!
By fourteen, little more than four hours sleep a night was really taking its toll, my mind was permanently locked in over analyzing everything, while my subconscious, unable to express itself In the normal way, through dreams, began manifesting itself in my conscious mind. To put it a different way, I began finding it almost impossible to tell the difference between fantasy and reality, I had allowed my imagination to take over completely, changing me into someone, anyone who has met me in the last ten years, can not believe ever existed!
I'm not going to list everything, and am ashamed of every single moment of those eight to ten years of my life, but I, hurt everyone who cared about me, pushing back harder and more furiously at those who cared the most. I became a fully fledged junkie as well as a dealer, and I think worst of all, I forgot how to care about anything, or anyone, in short, I gave in, and let the twisted mess of an imagination run my life, every day sinking deeper and deeper into myself, by now to paranoid to ever pull myself out again.
At the lowest point of my life, my mind and body wasted from, no sleep, no food, a diet of caffine, drugs and cigarettes, what little sleep I did get was interrupted by horrible re-ocouring nightmares, dreams that seemed to find things in my subconscious I didn't even know I was scared of! Like being utterly lost, I had no idea how much it unnerved me, until a dream I had several times. A maze of corridors and passages, that seemed to be two places Id worked, one, back stage at the London Palladium, the second, Heathrow Airport, T1, yeah, I know airports are well sign posted, but have you ever been back of house, as it were? All the passagea and corridors are the same, grey, bland and cold, with no signs, no directions, just rows of doors, God, its making me shake just remembering, as for the Palladium, well, just think, Phantom of the Opera on a smaller scale, I found passages that lead from the roof of the theatre, all the way down to an Underground (subway) platform!
Anyway, I stray from the point, the point is, I was having unique and wonderful ideas, not to glamorise drugs, but the effects the chemicals had on my brain seemed to hyper-exaggerating what I could think of, creating entire worlds of fantasy, people, nightmares and dreams......but the effects of the drugs also meant staying still for very long was impossible, I could not write, and my imagination, as I said took over.
The, and I do not use this word lightly, monster, I was, died when I was nineteen, and there is no other way to put this, I killed him, Yeah I know I now sound absolutely crazy, but thats what happened! I suffered a break down, lack of food, sleep and water, as I lived on coffee, no vitamins, none of the basic requirements a human being needs to live on, for months at a time, took its final toll, and if it hadn't been for a friend I was living with, a friend I honestly didn't deserve, I would have died that night.
It took two years for me, the real me :) , to re-surface, a lot of my recovery was due to being able to write again! I finally had a way to channel my imagination creatively. Now, I'm clean, I don't use drugs, I don't drink alcohol, OK, still a caffine freak and love cigarettes, but no ones perfect!
So, why do I write?
- I have so many extra hours, It's the only thing I've ever found that can keep me entertained for a whole night, seriously! I have every console known to man kind and I still write all night!
- and I don't care how this sounds, its the truth, I'm honestly scared of what might happen If I didn't
There it is then, my reasons for writing!
(I thought you were going to avoid drama??)
Oh shut up!
SO, someone else's turn......hmmmmm....lets see?
Yeah, you at the back!.....No not you, you!....Yeah, you picking your nose!