Sunday, October 21, 2012


The folks who know me - at least the ones who've known me since I was a kid and I've shared stuff with - know that I have some, shall we say, unusual dreams.  Some of them get so out there that one of my closest friends has told me that I need help on more than one occasion.

I've had dreams where my me, my mom, and Tom Cruise have been fighting zombies at a local putt-putt, and if they got to us, we'd turn into zombies ourselves.  In another one, I was running from a pale faced guy with a hole in his forehead that he covered with a transistor radio, and when he took the radio away so that I could see his head, my skin started to boil off.  A recent one I've had included me and one of the guys from The Exorcist trying to push disembodied spirits back up a dryer vent so that we could watch TV without interference.

Freaked out yet?
(The dream about my daughter and I conquering Mars was a little out there)
I don't think I'm alone in having bizarre dreams.  In fact, I think that most folks have strange visions while they sleep that they wouldn't want anyone to know about out of fear of a padded cell.  That I choose to share some of mine may mark be as a little bolder than most, but when I've been able to coax things out of folks, I'm reassured that I'm not alone in my psychosis.

Why have I chosen to share these things with you and risk people screaming as they sprint away from me as fast as they can?  Because I've decided to try and put together a dream journal.  A few of the out there things my subconscious runs through when I'm not awake are cool enough to make the cut in some of my stories.  I've already used a few things in previous novels, and I think I could get even more traction out of them if I wrote down a more detailed account.

Of course, that means keeping a writing journal next to my bed and trying to be alert enough to write things down the moment I wake up.  We tend to forget our dreams within minutes of waking up.  Yes, we may retain snippets from the most intense ones, but most of it goes away quickly.  Think about it - you're certain you've had a lot of crazy visions, but how many can you remember in detail?  Samuel Coleridge claims to have written the poem Kubla Khan after coming out of an opium enhanced dream.  He immediately wrote down his vision, but he was interrupted by a visitor, and when he finally got back to trying to write down the rest of it, the details of the dream were lost.

We writers are a little messed up in the head anyway.  Shouldn't we do what we can to use all available resources, including our dreams?  The results might not always be something coherent, but I bet it'll be a fun ride.


  1. Many of my dreams have become stories. You are not alone, my friend.

    I've got a small hand-held recorder that is ideal for just such musings at night. You needn't turn on a light. Works great!

    1. I'll have to remember that, Lorelei. Whatever works...and produces a good story. :-D