Been sick all month, and just getting better enough to work on the dissertation again.
But I've been noticing a pattern again and wonder if other people have it too -- namely that I seem to have four different brains.
ETA: Just in case this is unclear, I'm not going for any sort of cogent analysis, just babbling about how it feels. What's actually going on is doubtless a lot more complex than I could possibly access consciously, and not nearly so structured, but I really do seem to function in entirely differnt modes.
1) The editor/academic brain.
These two seem to be one and the same, because I have been entirely unable to edit the two story drafts I have languishing while I'm working on the dissertation. Even though I'm not editing the diss, I'm writing the first draft. This brain is that -- ability to think precisely, rather than go with what feels right just now, and think about how the words will affect the reader while I write.
The editor/academic brain dies at the first sign of fuzziness. If I'm not breathing pretty well, it's just gone. This is probably why I spent four years making no diss progress.
2) The prose-writer brain
This one can handle a little bit of fuzz. I don't have to be thinking incisively to imagine a narrative and immerse myself in a character's point of view, and I seem to plot by imagining. But once I'm immersed in a narrative it's pretty unpleasant to pull out of it and think about the dissertation.
3) The poetry-writer brain
This one seems to thrive on brainfuzz. Lines of poetry come into my head when I'm trying to fall asleep or not wanting to wake up, or when I'm far too out of it even to read. That's when I get free-associative, I guess, and the things that have been bothering me that I've been ignoring bubble up. Though they also turn up when I'm in the shower -- perhaps it's just that the poetry requires not being distracted by a zillion different thoughts?
Of course editing the poetry or the prose require editor brain, which has been completely taken up with discussing iconicity and metaphor in Comics as compared to language. So I'm feeling pretty unproductive as a writer just now. But when I get back to the novel, my main MC gets to threaten my female MC with a crosssbow, so that will be fun :)
4) The artist brain
This one comes on without warning -- words stop making sense and all I want to do is draw, or carve candles, or make something. And it's also all I'm good for for a while. It's a little disorienting, the extent to which I stop being a language-centered person, but I'm pretty confident at this point that the words will come back.
Anyone else have something like this, or am I just overthinking this?