Friday, September 30, 2011

Sweet Dreams

I've been thinking about dreams lately.  I know sometimes authors get inspiration from dreams.  I never have personally, my dreams are too disoriented.  Anything I wrote from them would end up in the Literature of the Absurd category.  Something along the lines of Daniil Kharms "Old Woman".  

Aaaaanyway, I was thinking more about dreams in books.  You see I'm thinking of putting one in my book.  I've read a lot of books with dream sequences.  The more I thought of it the more books I remembered having them.  Some were very good, some seemed more for dramatic effect and didn't seem to advance the plot at all, and thus were mildly irritating. 

Dreams are on the "not to do list"  for how to start a novel but I was wondering what people think of them as part of the story.  Safely tucked away in the middle. 

Do you like dreams in books?  Or do you think they're overused?


  1. Vernor's Law:
    All scenes should/need to accomplish 2 of 3 things. 1 - Provide Background Information, 2 - Develop the Characters, and 3 - Advance the Plot.

    If starting a novel with a dream does at least two of these, then that's where the dream belongs ... or the middle, or the end.

    Vernor Vinge SF/F Writer and techno geek:

  2. Sara,
    I've gotten story ideas from dreams and I've got few in the story as well. In fact, I'm going to include my first campaign entry as a dream in Paul's plot bunny story. ; )

    Dream on!

  3. I love getting story ideas from dreams. Don't mind reading about dreams at all in books, as long as they're there for a reason. Or, you know, give some closure - like Jamie dreaming of Jem using the phone :-)

  4. Widdershins, I definitely agree all scenes should do that.

  5. Zan, The plot bunny story just keeps growing...

  6. Deniz, Diana uses a lot of dreams. Sometimes we're in the dream with them and sometimes they just relate it to each other which is what I was thinking of doing. Hmmm, lots to study.