"Where do you get the ideas for your stories?"
I can't tell you how many times I've been asked this question, usually by non-writers. I bet loads of writers get asked the same. For me, I get most of the ideas for my sci-fi and fantasy novels and short stories from dreams.
"Who dreams like this?" -- This is usually the question that follows.
Well, I do. Blockbuster dreams, full of action, adventure and incredible special effects. I definitely blush whenever I have this conversation because it kind of makes me feel like a weirdo. But whatever, I'm too old to be pretending to be anything but me.
So, dreams take up a huge part of my creativity. A Bluebird’s Melancholy was a whimsical dream I had where I was the reincarnated bluebird and my husband was the unassuming cat. The Soul Snatcher was a recurring nightmare during my childhood, stemming from an urban legend in my neighborhood about a man buried underneath our school's playground. Tidal Waves represents a recurring nightmare that plagued me whenever work got too stressful.
The list goes on and on. Even the Family Relics series started with a dream of sister witches, a dying grandmother, family secrets, dragons, and lots and lots of chaos. I mean lots!
And I can't tell you how many times I've woken up in the middle of the night to write down my dreams in my journal before the details vanish. Sometimes, however, I do find scribbles that don't make sense. A few months ago I wrote this nonsensical entry: "Purple truck to Jupiter, and back, to save the cousins." This was just around the time SpaceX launched it's Tesla into space so, maybe that had an influence on my dreams that night, along with the spicy Latin food I had for dinner.
And what was I saving my cousins from? Why Jupiter? It was a sloppy entry. They're not all gems, but I still write down my dreams when I can remember them. The weirder the better. You never know what may come of them.
So tell me writers, do your dreams influence your writing as mine do? And readers, what amazing dreams have you had that could easily be massaged into a piece of fiction? In today's age of romance/zombie-horror/fantasy/comedy mashups, no story is too crazy!
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by Robert Stevens Connett
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