I began writing it in 2011, on the bottom bunk of a bed in Peru, where I was volunteering as an English teacher.
My initial goal for writing it was to prove that drinking and using like a normal person was possible if only the nature of the false-mind-within was realized. This plan backfired on me and forced me to reconsider my convictions.
State of Mind?
Today, I live in complete abstinence. But, for the first six years of writing, I ensured no words were written while under the influence—I was afraid of spreading a tainted message to the reader. (This isn’t to say I wasn’t plagued by dissonance).
The book takes places in the suburbs of Texas, a mental hospital, a drug rehab with a revolving door, a shanty town in Lima, Peru, an ayahuasca lodge in the Amazon Jungle, Cusco, Peru, Alaska, Hawaii, and China.
The Hero with a What?
The title was inspired by Joseph Campbell’s “The Hero with a Thousand Faces” and is a document of my Hero’s Journey and the role addiction has played in it. Although it’s my story, I believe everyone is on the Hero’s Journey.
Rumble. Rumble. Rumble.
Shortly after the first draft was finished on my 30th floor apartment in China, a small earthquake hit. I evacuated several flights of stairs before I realized I had an unsaved copy on my computer. I ran back to my apartment to email a copy to myself.
Thanks for reading. Now, I’ll work on my slow motion YES. If you have any questions, leave them in the comment section below.
Jacob O’Cain is a recovering drug addict and teaches ESL to kids in China. He’s the author of The Addict with a Thousand Faces (not yet published) and is actively looking to connect with people in the recovery community. Send him a message on Instagram @jacob_ocain or contact him through www.jacobocain.com.