Thursday, May 26, 2011

Turning Dreams or Nightmares Into Stories

How many times have you dreamed something so vivid and life-like, you remembered it after waking? Or the dream was so powerful it woke you up? This happens to me quite a bit. Perhaps it comes with the territory of being a writer. I keep a notebook and pen beside my bed for just that reason. I’ve actually had dreams so vivid in detail that with very little tweaking, they became stories.

Here is one of my more recent vivid dreams that could probably become something. I know I was panting when I woke from this one:

I was traveling down river on a smallish boat. I’m sitting on a raised seat on a narrow platform behind the driver and passenger seats—a fishing platform maybe. There are two seats side by side but the other is empty. The boat’s sides are low and this worries me because I think monsters could get into the boat too easily. There is a man steering us down river with a woman seated beside him. A teenaged boy stands beside me, a younger boy is standing on the floor of the boat in front of the passenger seat. There’s a little water in the bottom of the boat.

The murky brown river is about 50 feet across with jungle growth along both banks. We keep dodging drifting fallen trees, stumps, and plants growing into the water from the banks. All around us are Cayman-sized gators which approach the boat and leap into it or try to. One succeeds. I'm screaming at the younger boy to watch out when two more gators leap inside then instantly become small dogs. They come onto my platform, rubbing and acting playful but putting their open mouths on our legs and arms. I tell them if they bite I'll kill them. One rolls his eyes playfully while mouthing my arm. I shove him off and he becomes the gator again and I shoot him.

Next there is a human arm reaching up from the platform trying to grab my leg. I stamp at it until it disappears.

So—what do you make of that one? If you dream analyze, I’m not sure I want to know what this means. But it seems like good fodder for a horror story.

Tell us one of your dreams that would make a good story or one you DID turn into a story.


  1. Yes, good fodder for a horror tale! I've had a few dreams that really ought to be part of a dark fantasy novel. They are stuck in my head waiting for the right story.

  2. Anonymous said... What a dream. It's begging to be written.

    Alas, I never dream. Or if I do they vanish before I wake. Wish I did because I hear others talk about their fantastic dreams and I have nothing to tell.

    (I hope Blogger lets me post this. Lately, all they do is keep asking me to sign in and I sign in and sign in and the post never shows up. Here goes.)

    Three tries and no luck. Will try my wordpress profile. Beverly