People laugh when I tell them the Human Genome Project saved my writing career, but it’s the truth. Scientists can now pinpoint the DNA element that drives any process in the human body, including the whimsical flying monkeys that carry us away on flights of fancy into the gilded sunset of lands beyond time and space. Oh, come again soon, my angels of divine insight!

But I digress.

I lacked inspiration. Now, I have bucketfuls. Vast cauldrons of innovative profundity, pouring down upon my head like anointing oil. It tastes like pink lemonade and chews like salt-water taffy, all day long.

The Project made Visiostimine possible—the promise of every consciousness-expanding hallucinogen from the dawn of time, realized in a single, tiny pill. One dose, for life.

That’s right, I’m a registered user. Sure, I had to accept certain restrictions on my lifestyle, imposed by the grinding hob-nailed boot of a society that doesn’t understand illumination, that takes sadistic pleasure in snuffing out the feeble candle of truth beneath a bushel basket of stifling, oppressive, castor-oil-coated darkness, the loutish warden that chains my soul within a reeking oubliette bricked all around with regulations and Forms 378b. They watch me continuously. You’re probably one of their nefarious agents. The shoes. The shoes always speak truth, but I don’t hold that against you.

So, I can’t drive, or operate heavy machinery, or referee soccer games, because I never know when the muse will call to me, her dulcet voice urging me to new heights of wonder, whisking me away in an instant to a world where stolid unicorns play chess with droll manticores on their lily-carpeted hilltop, orphan children from every nation circling them in an eternal ring-around-the-rosy. They have coffee there. Strong coffee. I have a membership card.

My friends aren’t happy about the change. They never really wanted me to be successful, but I’m laughing all the way to the bank (oh, thank you…didn’t see that bus coming). Purple prose pays in prodigious pails of pence, you see. I’ve become edgy, exciting, experimental, extraordinary, extrasensory, extraterrestrial, extrasupraluminary, extra…

Thank you again. Yes, just a tap on the head whenever the alliteration goes a bit overlong. It’s useful when I’m searching for a word, but tends to get in the way of casual conversation. The clowns also hate it. Never forget that.

There are times I wish I could turn the Visio on and off at will, but it’s better, yes, much better, that the random flashbacks crash down upon my skull like a bloody mace, wielded with resolute ill-will by the Baron of Thorngravehollowwood, his waxed ebon mustache mocking me with its leering handlebar curves, twisted into tiny bows at the ends, the Gordian knots of a soul woven from the blackest tar in a pit of everlasting torture. It’s better for the creative process. Keeps me on my toes.

You think I’ve lost touch with reality? If this be fantasy, then let me breathe its pure air and drink its intoxicating wine until my belly bursts forth with rivers of imagination! I was dull, before. I wrote advertising copy, for Pete’s sake. Now, I’m < em>somebody. I’m an author! The Author. The center and wellspring of a universe that cannot hope to comprehend my ineffable majesty. All will cower before me like ants beneath the looming shadow of a giant’s colossal footfall! I see all, hear all, feel all, am all! Fear the wrath of my almighty pen!

Help me, oh, please, you can help me...quickly, while I’m sane for a moment. Here’s money...take it, there has to be an antidote. For the love of God, get some, slip it into my coffee before...

Oh, merciful heavens, here it comes again.


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