Guest Post with Marni Mann: ‘My Drug of Choice’

This week, I’m delighted to welcome to the blog another very talented writer: Marni Mann. Marni has written a very powerful piece about music and addiction. I’ll let her explain.


 Music has always been a part of my life. Since becoming an author, it’s played a more dominant role. Below, I’ve incorporated my addiction to music and excerpts from my novel, Memoirs Aren’t Fairytales, showing my protagonist’s addiction to heroin.

 My Drug of Choice

I closed my eyes, listening to the soft, harmonic beat in the background, and my mind relaxed. The talking bubble above my head popped. The list of duties I was responsible for was emptied from my queue. I was transferred to a different world. Not this world…

This was euphoric—tingles and sparks and melting—like I was being swallowed by a cloud of cotton and the sun was wrapping its rays around me like a blanket. I could feel my chin falling towards my chest, my back hunching forward. My body was acting on its own, and my mind was empty, like all my memories had been erased. There was scenery behind my lids. Aqua colored water and powdery sand that extended for miles.

The lyrics were my guide. The rhythm slowed and increased my pulse. The song took me above my mood. Dancing to the beat or crying to the verses, it affected my soul. Music showed me all the dreams and possibilities. It showed me the quietness behind bliss. But it didn’t show me these waves…

Coke gave me energy. Ecstasy made me dance and want to be touched. Shrooms made me hallucinate. But heroin. Shit. Heroin was kind. It didn’t trip me out like acid or bring me into a dark hole like PCP. It showed me the quietness of the waves. 

There was darkness that spread through my veins, thoughts, whispers, and memories. Memories that I wanted to forget. The blackness threatened to swallow me; bring me into a hole where only specks of light would shine through the soil. I just wanted to listen, but my cravings weren’t like this…

I just wanted a taste. I crawled off the couch to the middle of the room, sweeping my hand over all the trash. I found an empty bag, opened it, and licked the inside. I searched for more and ripped the tops off, wiping the packets over my tongue like they were postage stamps. I licked spoons and bottle caps caked with resin, biting off the clumps of tar like it was taffy. But none of it got me high. All it did was change the taste on my tongue from orange juice and bile.

I just loved the sound of the beating, tapping, and singing. Hearing the voice of my addiction. I wasn’t a junkie. Music was my drug of choice.

I had convinced myself I could stop using, like dope was something simple like chocolate. But heroin was my air. It had a hold of me like we were chained together. And those shackles weren’t just around my wrists, they were tied around my brain too.

 

A New Englander at heart, Marni Mann, now a Floridian is inspired by the sandy beaches and hot pink sunsets of Sarasota. A writer of literary fiction, she taps a mainstream appeal and shakes worldwide taboos, taking her readers on a dark, harrowing, and gritty journey. When she’s not nose deep in her laptop, she’s scouring for chocolate, traveling, reading, or walking her four-legged children. Her debut novel, Memoirs Aren’t Fairytales, was published by Booktrope in December 2011.

Website: http://marnismann.com

Twitter: @MarniMann
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mcbmann

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20 comments on “Guest Post with Marni Mann: ‘My Drug of Choice’

  1. MAJK says:

    I love the way you wound the two together – it’s gorgeous and intriguing!

  2. michelleflatley says:

    Strong, powerful writing, Marni. A vivid and frightening account. I was gripped. Very well done x

  3. Looks like we share an addiction 🙂 I feel the same way about music. Wonderful post!

    • Marni Mann says:

      Hi Jamie – thank you so much! 🙂 I see we have lots in common! Music makes everything better. I can’t imagine my life without it. 🙂

  4. Wow! This is wonderful, Marni! I truly cannot say enough to show you how much I enjoyed this. Nicely, nicely done.

  5. Emma says:

    That was beautifully written.

  6. Wow, that was really powerful and beautifully written.

  7. Julie Moran says:

    This is a very interesting account. I love music. I sing a lot and get transported, kidnapped in fact, so easily by rhythms, lyrics, melodies and movements in music. It can be ecstatic in the etymological sense of the word. A thrilling, vibrant ecstasy. The drug addiction account in your post is a direct dichotomy to this. It is a frightening ecstasy from where there might not be a return to self.

    • Marni Mann says:

      Thanks for your comment, Julie. I completely agree. Unless you count coffee or chocolate, music is my only *real* addiction. My protagonist, Nicole, is an addict in every sense. I felt the two addictions, although one healthy and one not, would show the difference between the ‘choice’ and the ‘disease.’ Thanks again for your kind words, they’re so appreciated! 🙂

  8. ragemichelle says:

    I live with a heroin addcit. He is my son and he’s 24 years old. To read other stories gives me an odd comfort, which is fleeting as comfort is not something familiar to me anymore.

    I’m glad you’re okay now.

    • Marni Mann says:

      Michelle, I want to thank you for your honest comment. I began writing this novel three years ago and throughout the process of bringing it to fruition, I’ve met such wonderful people, including yourself, with stories that have touched my heart. The reason I wrote this novel was because, like you, I have addicts in my life. I’ve watched my loved ones get destroyed by their addiction and many of them have died. Although I’m not an addict, I understand the pain you feel on a daily basis, the helplessness when your words aren’t persuasive enough, and the hopelessness of this disease. You’re not alone. I know that doesn’t ease your pain, but maybe knowing someone else shares your pain, someone willing to hold your hand during these dark times, offers you even more comfort.

      • ragemichelle says:

        Wow, I totally would have thought your words came from personal experience, although, I guess they do. I would write volumes on the pain of addiction, even though I am only looking in.

        He’s had a problem for years, but recently he was arrested which kinda shook things up and is forcing change. This is all good, but very painful. I have to change who I am in order to help him. I used to have a little box in my brain that I could go to and pretend that as bad as things are, that they would be okay. That box got blown to shit and it’s very hard to feel everything there is to feel without a break.

        It’s not MY pain that causes my morning tears. It’s his.

  9. Thanks for sharing Marni with us, Derek. She is a very special lady.

    • Marni Mann says:

      I always love reading your comments, Amberr. 🙂 Thank you so much for your support. You’re quite the special lady as well.

  10. Wow, this was powerful. I had to go back and reread to remind myself that only one was about heroin, not both! Very beautifully written, Marni.

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