Dreamscapes into Glinhaven

Posted Sat, 10/22/11

Dreams are spooky sometimes. I don't often remember my sleep-dreams, unless they are horrific (falling from a great height and waking just before the downward spiral comes to a halt), or vaguely sinister (seeing people who are no longer living, such as Foofer and Wilbert). The line between dreams and nightmares can also be blurred, making it hard to decipher their meanings, even if there are any to be had.

I rarely dream about writing. On occasion I'll envision a specific scene in my sleep when I'm focused on a new story during my waking hours, but not very often. Therefore, when I do dream about a story or characters I tend to pay attention - if I can remember the dream at all, that is.

I jot down ideas just like any writer, with many of them eventually finding their way into a plot. Some never see the light of day, however. It's not realistic to think every notion is a great one, no matter how good it looks on paper. There comes a time when an author has to draw the line and just get on with the business of writing.

For the last week or so I've had monasteries on my mind. Yes, the same monasteries that contain robed monks and the like. I was clueless for a few days, not sure why the idea was persistent, although I knew it had something to do with Glinhaven. It was rather irritating because, in my mind, the "opening" and story structure were already decided.

Then I dreamed about the monastery last week. Nothing too scary, mind you, just a brief look into a forbidding structure housing two dozen quiet men in long monk's robes with hoods obscuring their bent heads. Monks held their arms and hands at mid-section, stuffed into wide, long sleeves, as if each of them was in fierce contemplation.

It probably sounds more like a nightmare, but it wasn't. I didn't feel any fear during the dream, although I never did get to speak with the monks as they shuffled in the mist.

And no, I'm not crazy. Dreams are what they are, which none of us can really control.

Anyway, the "monastery" dream gave me inspiration to add to Glinhaven in order to accommodate the "new" set of circumstances. It has blended in with the rest as if it belonged there in the first place - something I like to call seamless threading, an invaluable lesson learned from an editor I worked with many years ago.

I don't want to give too much away at this point, just in case something else happens to change my current direction. As I did with the books in the Collective Obsessions Saga, I've taken to writing Glinhaven by long hand at night and typing my notes via computer during the day. It works well for me, so why mess with a good thing?

I hope to finish Glinhaven this winter, probably close to St. Patrick's Day. If I finish ahead of schedule all the better, but I'm not making promises just yet.

Tags: Glinhaven