Well, it’s official. Science has finally proven it: True creatives walk a fine line along the edge of crazy. Read this fascinating article in Scientific American about the link between specific mental illnesses and creativity.

In short, both creative genius and schizotypal disorders are caused by a lowering of the filters between different types of information (internal and external, one sense and another, one type of experience and others, etc.), allowing leak-through, which results in new and interesting… and sometimes totally cray-cray… combinations to emerge.

One example is when the brain interprets internal and external stimuli in the same way… so that, for instance, a schizophrenic “hears voices” that a normal person would interpret as their own internal monologue.

So, anyway. In totally unrelated news, I spent my entire writing hour this morning in conversation with my main character. Here’s a partial transcript:

Me: Jed, what do you want?

Jed: Um. I, I just, I wish everyone would get along.

Me: But Jed, what do YOU want?

Jed: For, I want, I want Nat to be happy.

Me: That’s what Nat wants. What do YOU want?

Jed: I want Nat and Cons to like each other.

Me: But what do you want for YOU?

Jed: I don’t know. I, uh. I guess, I don’t know.

Me: Do you want Nat to like you?

Jed: Yes, I guess so.

Me: Do you miss your  family?

Jed: Yes, but, I, uh, I wish Nat … I just want Nat to be happy.

Me: And to like you, right? Do you wish Nat would hug you more?

Jed (blushing): I guess so. Yeah. Can you… can I tell you something? You, uh, you can’t tell anyone… okay?

Me: Okay. I won’t.

And then he told me. You didn’t think I’d tell you what he said, did you? That’s just between us. I don’t spill other peoples’s secrets.

So anyway. I’m back. It feels good. The break was right, you were all right, I needed it. And my main character… well, he’ll be interesting now, because I’m interested in him. In fact, I’m slightly crazy about him.

This might be sorta what Jed looks like. Only, skinnier and with more hair. And he'd never have his picture taken with a blue backdrop because they don't have studios in the wild, silly.

Jed looks a bit like this. Only, skinnier and with more hair. And he’d never have his picture taken with a blue backdrop because they don’t have studios in captivity, silly. But those big eyes, the thoughtful quietness, the pensive innocence. All of that. It’s fitting that this picture comes from a site dedicated to finding missing children (see below).

3 thoughts on “Crazy

  1. In the case of the creative mind, it seems to me, the intellect has withdrawn its watchers from the gates, and the ideas rush in pell-mell, and only then does it review and inspect the multitude. You worthy critics, or whatever you may call yourselves, are ashamed or afraid of the momentary and passing madness which is found in all real creators, the longer or shorter duration of which distinguishes the thinking artist from the dreamer.
    –Friedrich von Schiller

  2. Pingback: The Glaring Problem With My Book ¶ Writer for Life

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