1. Ettina
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    Ettina Active Member

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    writing manic racing thoughts

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Ettina, Sep 11, 2012.

    OK, in one of my stories, one character has a (supernaturally based) condition that bears a lot of similarity to a neverending manic episode. I'm planning to have the story alternate between several first-person perspectives, including his. (The alternating perspectives will be structured a bit like KA Applegate's Megamorphs books.)

    Anyway, for the scenes from the ill character's perspective, how do I give the impression of racing thoughts in the narrative?
     
  2. DanesDarkLand
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    DanesDarkLand Senior Member

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    Ever try to interrupt a person who speaks a mile a minute? Very little can usually get through the rambling. If you can picture someone speaking out loud in marathon of words without end, switching ideas on a dime, subjects, new thought patterns emerging from one idea leading into the next, then you have a pretty good idea of what it should sound like inside his mind.
     
  3. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Danes is right - ramble, stream of conscious.

    It's best too, if you don't really show the links in the thought process, keep
    them broken, jagged. Interrupt sentences. Toss in a random word that seems to make no sense.
    Make it a fight for him to gain back his train of thought. Where was I? that sort of thing.
     
  4. marktx
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    marktx Contributing Member

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    Word repetition can also be useful if done properly. For inspiration, take a listen to Paul Simon's "You Can Call Me Al." I think he achieves the effect of racing thoughts very nicely in this song.
     
  5. mclanier235
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    mclanier235 Member

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    I understand the idea here, but I must raise a concern... If its rambling, spastic and jumbled... Is it going to be clear and engaging to the reader? Just something to think about... It might be something you showcase through someone else's perspective, rather than that character's own viewpoint.
     
  6. Crystal Parney
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    Crystal Parney Member

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    Manic people tend to appear anxious at times. I work in the psychiatric unit at my local hospital. I've noticed manic patients are the neediest patients of all. It's like they can't keep up with their minds. I will have a pt ask for something and before I am done getting them what they need they are already focused on another need. Sometimes we have to implement a one rquest per hour rule. Highly manic pts also experience some psychosis with racing thoughts, such as hearing voices, ect. They have flights of ideas, and overly stimulated environments make things worse. Hope this helps.
     
  7. Sulla
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    Sulla Member

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    I'm bi-polar.

    When I'm manic I have a lot of crazy ideas that could never be achieved. My thoughts are moving faster than I can process them. I pace around. Have a lot of energy. It's like being Coked up.

    I also tend to think in very arrogant, egotistical terms. This is the period where I can actually get sex. But I think I'm like a god. I feel like I'm in absolute control. Real mania, in the end, is painful though. Not just for the crash but after a while you feel kind of sick. Like motion sickness. You have all these thoughts going at light speed. It's painful.

    I don't think I've ever been anxious during this period thought it may look that I am.
     

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