Wednesday, January 13, 2010

THE WRITE WHISPER: Dream journal

In my last WRITE WHISPER post, I discussed the hypnologic state, and how I solve plot problems/have inspiration during this time.
So as a follow on, let's discuss dream journals.
Personally, I've never had a dream which has resulted in a book, though I've heard some authors have.
For me, it's that pre-dream state which is a cauldron of bubbling ideas.
Our subconcious never sleeps so why not tap into it?
The art of keeping a dream journal is simple.
Keep a notebook and pen by the bed.
The instant you wake (whether it be morning or middle of the night), don't move. Stay still and relaxed, try to remember your dreams or anything else you can think of.
Initially you may only get vague details. A rose. The colour purple. Kids running.
Or perhaps a pervading feeling will come through...fear, happiness...
Whatever you barely remember, write it down.
Start to court your dreams. The more committed you are, the more vivid your dreams may become.
A trick I use often is to ponder a plot question just before falling asleep.
Hopefully, the answer will appear.
Trying new ways to harness our creative energy is fun. Why not give it a try?


Tracey said...

Hi Nicola, like the idea of the dream journal. It's quite strange, I was on the edge of waking, when I had this dream/thought - a conversation between twins, but it was absolutely bizarre, even more bizarre that I cannot clearly remember a thing of it now, yet it was only yesterday. I'm going to do as you suggest - pose a question before I nod off, then hopefully my mind will work out an interesting plot :-)

Lacey Devlin said...

I had a dream journal a couple of years ago but I have to say I was never very impressed with what my subconscious came up with so I eventually stopped. I think the only conclusion to draw is that I have a lazy subconscious...

Romy said...

I love my dreams. Sometimes it's like watching a movie and I'm actually sad to wake up.

You're right, though, that it takes some training to remember your dreams and a dream journal is the best way. I'm one of those who gets story ideas from my dreams. At least two of my novels started as dreams!

Caroline Storer said...

I'm sure if the DH2b got hold of my dream journal he would chuck it out of the window! Switching the light on at 3am to write things down - which I have done many times! - is always met with moans of disaproval (which I can't blame him for really!) I've now taken to going to the loo with said notebook and scribbling ideas down. Harmony is now restored - lol! Take care. Caroline x

Nicola Marsh said...

That definitely sounds like a book trigger, Tracey. Twins are popular in category fiction!

Nicola Marsh said...

Doesn't work for everyone, Lacey, just another of those things to give a go and think 'maybe? Maybe not!'

Nicola Marsh said...

Wow, that's great, Romy!

Nicola Marsh said...

One word for you, Caroline.

Torch. :)

I used to madly scribble in the dark, then couldn't make sense of it the next day.
Now I have this teeny weeny penlight torch I keep next to my pen and notebook, so I can shine while scribbling.
Sounds better than having to get out of bed to go to the loo, lol