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Clarkesworld Magazine © 2012 Wyrm Publishing. Robot illustration by Serj Iulian.

 

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A New Horizon

I’ve been reading a lot of sci-fi/fantasy novels lately, which has reinvigorated and inspired my desire to pen my own tomes. As some may know already (because I’ve shared it here and in other places), I’m what they call a “heroin addict.”  Now I don’t really care much for modern treatment methods and their insistence that I forever brand myself, ‘ADDICT’.  To them it’s an incurable disease.  To me it’s a personality disorder at most, that happens to have some genetic influence.

Debating the philosophical and theoretical dynamics of addiction isn’t my goal at present.  (As much as I wish it were; I’ve got a lot to say on the subject.  Plenty of criticisms and suggestions for more effective management.)  No, right now I’m only here to announce that I’ve revamped the look of SOC and I’m intending to keep up with posting.  I have one very important reason for all of this.  My book.

Originally, I was planning to write an autobiographical account of my “battle with addiction.”  But in hindsight, that sounds boring.  So instead, I’m going to fictionalize my story and throw a little SFF into the mix.  In reality, this idea isn’t so far from the truth.  In fact, I sort of fell into my addiction while in the pursuit a wider perspective of myself and existence.  This motivation actually led me through some really interesting experiences, that, with a little tweaking, could make for some wild sci fi/fantasy elements.

So now my book has evolved into a novelized fiction of my autobiography.  My intent is not just to tell my boring story, or to produce some kind of self help book (though the book may help some people, not just addicts either), but rather to explore the bounds of consciousness through the use of drugs and through natural means.  This story will follow me as the protagonist.   Through my various exploits I hope to express some opinions I have regarding the mind, consciousness, will, questions of existentialism, and most importantly, my dissatisfaction with the mental health/psychology field and what I believe to be a much needed shift in how we think about how we think.

Some of this text will probably seem antagonistic toward mainstream mental health professionals, and with good reason.  I’ve been experiencing their “treatment” in the context of substance abuse and addiction for a long time.  I’ve also been educated by them and I’ve heard what they believe of the mind.  If you’re unfamiliar with the field, you might be shocked at some of the things they say pertaining to how mental health is treated.  I know I was.  The truth is, they don’t care to understand why a treatment works, only that it does.  But the problem is that they don’t really know that it does.  They see improvements and consider the job done, whether actual treatment has taken place or not.  The prevailing treatment is to take a pill and move on.  When your Primary Care Physician (who is not trained in psychiatry) can prescribe mood altering drugs, something is wrong.

Is it wrong on purpose?  Is it just a desperate attempt to get a jump on the multitudes of mental disorders popping up every day?  And why is there a surge in mental health problems?  Were they always there and just not diagnosed because there were no criteria by which to diagnose?  Or are we becoming sicker and sicker mentally as we move away from nature and toward a technological singularity?  Is our technology itself the culprit?  Are we now receiving the mental backlash from playing with technology that has neurological implications never suspected?  Are we missing some crucial element of the big picture, such as a metaphysical quality of consciousness (a collective consciousness even) that is disrupted by the ever increasing use of wireless signals?  And worst of all, does somebody already know, but hides the truth from the brainwashed masses?

There are some profoundly disturbing opinions of the human mind in the upper echelons of the mental health fields (psychology, psychiatry, neurology, sociology, social work, therapy, etc.), which I intend to tackle in my novel, tentatively titled ’11 : 26′.

My experiences in the world of addicts (especially junkies), the world of academia, the world of metaphysics, psychonauts and shamans and in the world of ‘ME’, is my qualification.  These are realities I’ve been coping with for 15 years.  Trying to wrap my mind around for 15 years.  Questions I’ve been trying to answer for 15 years.  Sometimes I didn’t see the path in front of me and was blind to my quest, but I was still journeying and learning.  Information was still downloading into my multi-dimensional self for use at a later date.  I’ve spent the past 15 years researching this book first hand and just didn’t know it.  Now it is time.

I’m planning on self publishing my book as an ebook first, which will be available on Amazon for the Kindle and other sites in other formats.  This will allow me to keep costs low and not have to dick around with an agent or editor.  Eventually I will probably work on releasing it as a physical text through some publisher.  But for now, I want to stay independent with it, so I can say what I want without being censored.  In time things may change, once I’ve got a foothold.

Stay tuned for a more complete preview of ’11 : 26′ in the coming days (maybe a little longer because of the upcoming holiday)