I am a dreamer. Every night, when I go to bed, I dream, but most important is I remember my dreams. The dreamscape is a treacherous arena; it can bring you to enchanting places within your subconscious or drag you through the muck and mire of your fears.
The other night I had a terrible dream. In fact, I was still depressed by what transpired in the dream well after I woke up from it. I won’t get into the details (would be too long and weird), but the big picture was that I either had to save myself or risk my life for others. Through it all, I could only think of my children, and how much I felt they needed me in their lives (because they are so young)…so the question became who needed me more, “the others” (a group of adults) or my children…should I ensure my survival for the sake of my children and let “the others” perish? I was grieved. I was torn. I was depressed. I cried. I vacillated between committing a selfless act and a self-centered one… I felt empty. I felt angry. I felt conniving. I felt sorrowful. I felt lost, all because I could not commit to either idea. In the end, the decision was made for me…
What does this have to do with writing? As writers we are expected to draw on our personal experiences (or observations of others) to bring our written pieces to life, but how many of us look to the dreamscape for that kind of information or inspiration? If you had a nightmare, would you do your best to forget it, or would you hang on to it? Would you make a conscious effort to remember the fear and panic experienced in the nightmare with hopes of translating those raw emotions over to a written piece?
I would encourage any writer to hang on to the colorful experiences that transpire in the dreamscape — even the disturbing dreams can be put to good use. I won’t soon forget the dream I had, but what helps me to cope with it is the idea that I can use (or better yet <em style="outline-width: 0px; outline-style: initial; outline-color: initial; font-size: 14px; vertical-align: baseline; background-image: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; background-color: transparent; background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; padding: 0px; margin: 0px; border: 0px initial initial;">channel)</em> the experience into my material.