From Dream to Novel

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For a man that says he doesn’t dream, he sure remembers a doosy of one. I am currently writing a novel, The Lights of Rosendale, that is completely inspired by a dream my boyfriend had one night.

Typically a dream lasts from a few seconds to twenty minutes and most of us have three to seven dreams a night. The succession of images, feelings, emotions, sensations, and ideas sometimes take on a life of their own if we are able to remember them when we wake up; doing so during a REM cycle you are more likely to remember the dream.

The random assortment of images, emotions, etc. are often said to be linked to our memories, recent experiences, or current thought patterns. When I dream I enjoy the search upon waking for what image was from what part of my previous day. The concoction of how my daily itinerary ends jumbled up in a dream is fun to unravel. A flash of this, a flip of that, and voila you have a new episode of what your life could have been. According to Freud, bad dreams let the brain learn to gain control over emotions from distressing situations. These dreams worry me. The ones that you have and days or weeks later the exact dream is unfolding in real life; unfolding right up to the critical moment where in your dream something evil happened. Every person is there, the setting is the same, the dialogue exact, but the drama never arrives. In real life nothing like evil happens. Unsettling. Jung supposed that dreams compensated for one-sided attitudes we were inclined to in waking consciousness. Thank goodness at some point our minds are opened up for us to see options. Others believe dreams enable us to work out things we are unable to say or feel when awake; make connections safely to things that cause us distress or regulate our moods.

His dream was a blend of the past and future; events that happened and are clearly explainable merging with events that happened with no explanation acceptable co-mingling with things only the imagination could consider. How it all ties together on paper will be fun to create.

This dream was so vivid for him and his re-telling of it to me so masterful that I now have clarity of where the story begins, where it is going, and how most of it gets there. Frantic conversations flit about in my head regarding what should be or should not be included. Staying true to his vision is all that concerns me. I don’t have the same qualms about writing his book as I do about writing my book; one I have been cerebrating for over twenty years. So far twelve chapters are outlined with multiple settings, characterizations, parallelisms, conflicts, but alas, no resolutions. He has some more dreaming to do I think. At best we have more brainstorming to do.

While the main setting includes his childhood stomping ground and a place I have never visited, I am having no trouble constructing opening chapters from his telling of tidbits about how he spent his time. I am often caught daydreaming on the mountain or in the mines of this setting as I brainstorm ideas while I am supposed to be working. This blog was written at work. One thing leads to another and I am off following a tangent up a dirt road climbing the mountain where limestone was quarried, summer forays were planned and executed, baseball was king, and NASA delivered the leap immortal. Perhaps it helps that there were historical benchmarks associated with the timeline in the setting. Fantastic events that happen few and far between in a life time. And then there were the lights of Rosendale.


Obstacles to Writing

It is so simple that I only wish it was doable.  These obstacles I have are so manageable if only.  Writers are worse than Hollywoodians when it comes to ego driven insanity.  Our creative souls propel us to places we can’t reach but can feel, we can’t draw but can see, we can’t be but can imagine.  A padded cell is not good enough to contain the insanity our writer’s ego ignites.

Never failing to impede my desire, these obstacles exist to torment my need to write.

Time—the thief of all desires.  Never enough.  Mismanaged at best when we do have it.  Interrupted by those that think so much less of what we are doing that they think we are doing nothing.   I just need to order more hours in which to write.  can it be as simple as designing my own clock with a time warp or Mobius loop for just those few more hours I want?

Eye Twitch—if only my fingertips had eyes to type out on my illuminated keyboard the thoughts I wanted to write when my eyes were so tired that they start twitching at me to demand I close them for sleep.

Idea Muse—those gossamer glimmers that arrive in the middle —-middle of work, middle of the night, middle of anything but the opportune time to capture; sure I will remember that thought, those phrases, these descriptions, this character, a twisted plot complicated in a unique knot; no need to write it down so no worries that I don’t have my journal or a pen.

Technology—don’t even get me started since I won’t be able to find my way out of the ones and zeros without my techilicious man.  And let’s admit that technology is more on the positive than the negative when it comes to writing.  More of an assistive tool than an obstacle, unless, of course we see those words ‘file not found’ or the blue screen of death when we try to boot up a computer. No ExcusesWP_20130217_01020130222220852










In spite of these obstacles this blog got finished.  It may not have been what I wanted to write tonight but I did write, right?

PS  The techilicious man had a solution for the Idea Muse attacks when I have no journal or pen:  Voice Notes on my Nokia Lumia 920!  He is such a hero!