This time of year certain writers are stricken with a malady known as NaNo Brain. It comes from trying to write 50,000 words in the span of 30 days.
It's kinda like Pregnancy Brain. If you've ever been pregnant or been around someone who's pregnant, then you're familiar with the signs: shoddy memory, craptastic attention span, fluctuating tempers.
If it any wonder writers liken their books to babies? You spend a set amount of time producing something you hope will turn out wonderful, and an unknown amount of time trying to make sure said product actually does turn out wonderful. (Yeah, yeah, babies are products... work with me here.) And sooner or later, you send it out into the world hoping it will be good and awesome and make a difference one way or another.
Of course, there are differences.
At the end of nine months, Pregnancy Brain goes away and the afflicted have a bouncy bundle of joy to show for their efforts.
With NaNo Brain, you compress all that into 30 days and at the end you have... part of a book.
During Pregnancy Brain, you're supposed to eat right, get lots of rest, exercise, and cut out your nasty habits.
During NaNo Brain, eating right is hit or miss, rest is laughable, exercise amounts to getting up to use the bathroom, caffeine flows, and - probably more my habit than yours - many ashtrays are filled to overflowing.
And of course, shoving 50K words out your fingertips is way less physically painful than... Well, you know.
With both, the end of your affliction isn't really the end. (Even when you send the former off to college and the latter off to be published.)
But what do I know? I have NaNo Brain. And I will well into December*.
*My fault for committing to finishing this by 12/15.