More days than not, I feel hopeful. It's a light, airy feeling, one that carries me through the day. It's like spring sunlight, or bread that's just come out of the oven. It's energizing, a feeling that I can go on forever.

Sometimes, though, I come back to earth, and then I get pulled down below the surface. I am trapped in muck, down in the hole, wondering how my shoes got full of water.

(I do wonder if this means I'm ready to talk to my doctor about whatever the latest mood-enhancing meds that are being advertised in those dippy commercials. I hope not. I don't even like taking NyQuil.)

I've noticed the way these moods are reflected in the quality and quantity of my writing. I know that if I get angry about something (and we're talking just simmering anger, not you-killed-my-family-and-dishonored-a-Shaolin-temple blinding fury), I tend to be prolific. Same goes when I'm happy (though not oh-sweet-mystery-of-life-at-last-I-found-you happy). It's not all good, but I hit my targets more times than not.

The key is figuring how to get my brain and heart to operate at the same time.