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The Midnight Disease: The Drive to Write, Writer's Block, and the Creative Brain by Alice W Flaherty
The Midnight Disease: The Drive to Write, Writer's Block, and the Creative Brain

julieatwood48, December 16, 2008

I have been a freelance writer and cartoonist with a newspaper for over 21 years. During that time, I have produced 63 short stories which were published, along with numerous poems. While in therapy for a dissociative disorder, I wrote extensively and shared my journals with my psychologist- who in turn- shared my writings with his colleagues. Between 1989-1996, I experienced an onslaught of different states of consciousness and an accelerated thought process which resulted in severe hypergraphia. The human mind is a warehouse in which information is recorded and stored. A reservoir of creativity exists within this domain, and when one learns to "tap" into this well of knowledge, one is inundated with information. The thought process speeds up and one gains access to everything available inside their mind. I wrote continuously, day and night, and produced an enormous amount of journals, essays, stories, poems, cartoons and artwork. Besides my literary skills, I excelled in other areas of life and I worked almost at the speed of light. My whole cognitive system was shoved into "warp speed" and I could not control the flood of information pouring into my mind. While this process offers high creativity and production, it can be overwhelming and exhausting-depending on how much is stored within the mind's data banks. I was often asked, "Where do you store it all?" The brain's storage facility is unlimited, and when one is eidetic, there is an informational overload. A picture says a thousand words - well, when a person has a photographic mind, the words are endless. To control the flooding process, so one is not overwhelmed, one needs to learn moderation. Knowledge is good, but too much knowledge can be dangerous. I suffered for years with migraines and seizures. In June of 2003, I underwent brain surgery for an enlarged cyst. Once the pressure inside my head was alleviated, the seizures came to an abrupt halt and the quality of my life improved. you can see bouts of hypergraphia continue!
P.S. I wrote to Dr. Flaherty awhile back and told her about my own experience with hypergraphia.
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