Life can be difficult for teenager Addison Silar, but music makes it easier. Addison copes with Asperger’s syndrome, bipolar disorder, and ADHD, not to mention being the biggest kid in virtually any class he takes, yet invariably one of the gentlest and thus a target for bullying. He has a rich imagination and dedicates much of his creativity to writing science fiction. This chapter chronicles his creation of an in-progress sci-fi novel, “The Unfortunate Project,” and especially the “writing to music” process he employs to transform musical sounds into fictional worlds. “[W]hen I put the music on I get a creative spark-type thing,” Addison explains, “’cause usually it’s hard for me to think, and when I get that creative spark I honestly couldn’t tell you what comes through my head, but I feel I’m able to take the song and in a sense manipulate it and put it into words.” Addison applies a similar music-infused process to the writing of poetry, yielding poignant verses such as this one: “That place your heart desires / It is shaped to your being / It has everything you want / And nothing you need / It belongs with you / Wherever you go / To help people that you don’t know.”
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