More than a place--it's a writer's muse.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Dreaming & Plotting

My muse seems to only speak to me when I am sleeping. Or washing my hair. I don't know what I did to piss him off, but he definitely only wants to talk to me when I don't have a pen and paper handy.

Anyone else have this problem?

I'm lucky, though, when it comes to my dreams. I dream in color. My dreams tend to follow a story line, as if I'm watching a movie. I can influence my dreams, and I even dream about reading. I pick up a book, open the pages, and read. Boring, I know, but that was the rough beginning of FAE NIGHTS. HUNTER'S MOON also began as a dream, influenced by talking werewolves with 13 TO LIFE author Shannon.

I don't write down my dreams for two reasond.

1: I cherish my sleep far too much and
2: My handwriting is horrible enough when I am awake. I can't read it at all if I write at 3 am in the dark.

What's a girl to do?

Well, I can actually step out of my dream and replay parts I want to remember over and over. I scan in on details, I ask my dream characters questions. I become a dream reporter, and in the morning, I write down everything I can remember, double-spaced in a notebook. I double space so that if I remember something else later, I can write it in.

In HUNTER'S MOON, I spent a lot of time with my werewolf hero, Lucan. During the dream, which was freaking scary, I paused and took a look around, then asked Lucan why he was there, what was happening, what does he remember. Acknowledging that it was a dream had to be done first, then I could work on putting everything to memory.

I have been known to wake up and repeat a line out loud that I really liked. My husband no longer looks at me strangely when I talking to myself; he figures I am just writing a scene. It often happens when I am in the shower as well. Scrubbing my head seems to encourage the voices of my characters to come forth. I write my scene out loud, then put it on paper the moment I can.

I do often write on the computer, but the best scenes seem to come to me when I am away from the technological beast. I have heard somewhere that writing on the computer uses a different part of your brain than writing on paper. If you are stuck on a scene, shut off the laptop and get out your notebook, or vice versa. You'll be surprised what may come out.

So, that is my strange way of coming up with plots and scenes. What do you do?


Saranna DeWylde said...

Wow. I've heard that you aren't supposed to be able to read in your deams, but I can too. I don't plot that way.

In fact, I don't plot at all. I am just the vessel. When I try to influence my characters a certain way, it comes out like crap.

I will daydream sometimes about my characters, but I have no say. They do what they do.

I like what Stephen King said, that all of the stories that we write are already whole and we just have to unearth them.

And congrats on your big day!

Gail Hart said...

Scenes, and even the specific wording of scenes, often come to me while I'm on the eliptical machine. I think this is probably because we don't have a TV in the workout at my complex, so my mind doesn't have anything else to do.

T. said...

It's funny, when I get stuck while writing a review, I do walk away from the computer and pull out the pen & paper. It really does help. T.

Robin said...

The horror story I have on textnovel, BACK ROADS, is also based on this horrible hormonal dream I had during my late pregnancy with my 1st baby. I still cry when I think about it, but writing it down has definitely helped me in dealing with it.

And no more B slasher films for me. I have too good an imagination :)

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