My grandpa died happy. Sex, orgasm, heart attack, grave - in that order. I was young and spared the details of his climactic exit from this world. However, at nine years old, I was heartbroken. I translated his loss into poetry and called my work Ode to Grandpa. The family published the poem on the back of his obituary. This is my earliest recollection of transforming devastation into artistic expression. I'm somewhat of an expert now.
When my son decided "just say no" was a square thing to do, he developed a habit. Marijuana, ecstasy, pills, cocaine - in that order. He's onto recovery and doing pretty well these days. That's good news.
I talk candidly about addiction. I write comically about it too. Sometimes the shit is just funny, OK. Never, as it's happening of course, but after a while, you can find some hilarious moments in the midst of most trauma.
Attempting to make sense of my son's parlay into illegal substances, I wrote a short screenplay. A Long Line of Addicts is the kind of fiction that's extremely close to the truth. If that sounds intriguing, you can read the script here...