Guest post: The worlds where dreams may take us

Flying with Fairies, by Bob Cherny

Bob Cherney

We can analyze our dreams for what they say about us, fear them for what they might mean, take them for more than they are, merely enjoy them or follow them into the worlds where they may take us.

My book “Flying with Fairies” is this last. Born of a single brilliant full-color image, the first chapter turned into a second and then into a novel and then into a series. This book was a departure from what I had written previously and is unlike anything I have written since. But then, the dream that inspired it stood out from the other dreams for its visual clarity and symbolic obscurity. It was an opportunity to be exploited and a challenge to be faced. It spoke of pleasure and of hard work at the same time.

“Gatorbait”, a short story published in a Florida based regional publication, was also based on a single image. Where “Fairies” was based on a mid-air collision between a fairy and a flying human, “Gatorbait” was based on a young rodeo competitor and her flying horse.

I have a first chapter of a spy thriller that was so completely formed in my mind when I woke up, I could wait two days before writing it down. I have no idea what I will do with that chapter, but it’s there in case of whatever.

Everyone dreams, but remembering and exploiting dreams takes a willingness to step into a place where few of us are comfortable going. If you wish to write, go there. Take the risk. Exorcise the demons by writing them down and capturing them on the printed page where they can no longer do you any harm.

Do not work for your dreams. Make them work for you.

My thanks to Bob for this glimpse into a wonderful dreaming and writing life, and for his insightful comments about exorcising personal demons by capturing them on the printed page. 

How do you make your dreams work for you?

10 thoughts on “Guest post: The worlds where dreams may take us”

  1. Lovely post, Jenny and Bob. I love those lines: ‘Everyone dreams, but remembering and exploiting dreams takes a willingness to step into a place where few of us are comfortable going.’ So true!

  2. Yes, I love that whole paragraph – writing can take that kind of courage too. Thankyou for commenting 🙂

  3. What a great post! I’ve never considered writing down my dreams, but then I read this: ‘Do not work for your dreams. Make them work for you.’ It’s made me think again. Shall give it a go and see what happens!

  4. Ooh… good plan! I’ve got some recalling-and-recording advice on my tips page, Carolyn – even if you often recall a dream, you may be surprised how much more you start to remember when you start to write them down

  5. How fascinating. I wrote a novella once that came from a dream of finding a white horse in my kitchen. I wonder whether horses are a particular stimulus?

  6. I definitely think animals are – if you click on the metamorphosis tag you’ll find a couple of fabulous guest posts about dreams of turning into animals. I believe everyone has particular power animals – rather like the daimons in Philip Pullman’s wonderful ‘His Dark Materials’ – maybe one of yours is the horse?

  7. I often write my dreams and nightmares down. Turned one nightmare into a short horror story once which won me a prize in a writing competition. And funnily enough my dream last night involved a sabre toothed tiger. Having written three books with such a beast being my main character this was the first time I’d ever faced a ‘real’ one in a dream. And boy was he scary, yet all he did was give people friendly licks! The subconscious is such an amazing thing.

  8. Hi Ann – this is the first time someone here on the blog has mentioned writing about an animal first, and then dreaming about it. Most of my guests have talked about a dream that sparked a book/poem. I’m sure my readers would love to hear about the nightmare that sparked your horror story – please email me if you’d like to write a guest post.

  9. There seems to be something a little magical about dreams. Perhaps that is why I am wary of writing them down but this post has inspired me to give it a go. Last night I had a dream about finding a tarantula skin in my house and knowing that somewhere that great, hairy spider was lurking. I hate spiders but wasn’t particularly scared which is odd. Amethyst is meant to encourage dreaming so anyone who has trouble remembering their dreams could put a piece of this stone under their pillow. When I did this I had the most beautiful and vivid dream. Thank-you both for such a thought-provoking piece.

  10. What an intriguing dream, Alex. I think there’s certainly something magical about dreams, and that might well be a reason why most people choose to ignore or forget them, but when you develop a practice of regular recall you’re actually moving into the magic and becoming a sort of magician. Like Bob says, capturing the demons, as well as all the wonderful, life-giving images that then enter your consciousness and enrich your waking life. I’ve got info about recalling and recording on my tips page, and Toko-pa has a delightful video clip about it Sweet dreams!

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