Just kidding about the shooting part

Here’s another article on hypergraphia. This one doubles as an interview with Alice Flaherty, author of The Midnight Disease. For those just tuning in:

The unstoppable drive to write (or produce in other media), called hypergraphia, can be triggered by temporal lobe epilepsy, mania, and other mood disorders. Dostoevsky and van Gogh are examples. The late Norman Geschwind, a Harvard expert on hypergraphia, referred to such talents as a valuable result from a brain defect.

(Via Bookninja.)

Much as I’d like, in theory, to be sympathetic to sufferers of any disorder or “brain defect,” I can’t drum up much compassion for these folks. My inner dialogue:

Oh, you poor thing. You just can’t stop working on your novel? You’re filled with an unrelenting impulse to write instead of boozing it up, dealing with tedious social engagements, or sleeping?

Pardon me while I shoot myself, or you, or your manuscript. Or, what the hell, all three of us.

Seriously, though: put down that goddamned pen before I take it away and force you to watch me holding it over the page and suffering from writers block.

Okay, no really. What’s your secret? Ritalin? Crank? You can tell me.

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