What Are Dreams Made Off?

Ever since I can remember my sleeping nights have been filled with a wide variation of dreams. Some of them are linked to people I’ve met, or places I’ve visited. Some are disjointed and jump from one unlinked scenario to another. Occasionally I dream about people I have never met. On holiday I dreamt that I met up with online friend and Rainstorm author, Tammy Maas. As usual it felt so real, we were at a writers’ conference, she wore a red dress and spoke with a deep southern drawl (not sure she’d be too happy about the last bit as she is from Iowa!). It made me chuckle so much that when I returned from my hols I had to send her a message about it.

Apart from a small handful, most dreams disappear on wakening, banished to depths of my sub conscious memory, and those that are left soon follow suit. For some people their dreams can become quite lucrative. Many films and books have been inspired this way – we’ve all heard about Stephanie Meyer whose initial idea for the Twilight Saga was inspired from a dream. Sadly, all my story ideas have derived from hours scratching my head and rubbing my chin. Shame really.

Over the last week I’ve experienced a large number of ‘bad’ dreams: those where you wake up bathed in a hot sweat, switch on the light and breathe deeply to calm your ragged nerves. The last time I had a run of bad dreams I was researching the background and psyche of serial killers. Quite understandable really. But not this time. Considering my preference for crime fiction and thrillers, most of my sleeping hours are filled with amusing or nonsensical dreams.

I considered what I have been doing differently. Just back from holiday last weekend, the past week has been spent chasing my tail, catching up with work, friends, family. My feet have barely touched the ground. There’s been little time to breathe let alone read or write.

I scoured the internet for answers. It seems the reason why we dream has baffled scientists for centuries. However, there are a host of sites and forums based on the interpretations of dreams. I spent a couple of hours reading through, but they bore little relation to my own experience. For example, some people believe a recurring dream can be a result of our sub conscious helping us to solve a particular problem. In essence this makes sense. But mine are mostly sporadic so that doesn’t really apply.

Dreams certainly seem one of life’s most intriguing mysteries, particularly as they are completely out of our control. Unfortunately, none of my dreams (those that I can remember) hold much substance or appear to be linked to anything specific in my waking life. I guess I’ll just have to put them down to a figment of my overactive imagination and go back to reading before I sleep. But it is a fascinating subject. Do you dream? Have any of your dreams ever inspired you? I’d love to hear your views.

10 thoughts on “What Are Dreams Made Off?

  1. I dream too much! Most of the times they involve people and situations not ever present at any stage of my life. I have been jolted awake by my dreams as well, some giving me visions that I fear, but many that add to the creativity of my mythology in process.

    Some are so utterly absurd I awake my wife while laughing. Some are so realistic and frightening, that I burst from the bed, with sheets flying, ready for combat with an intruder.

    I wish I could record them. Most are more interesting than anything I’ve seen on the tube. What they mean, I am too afraid to ask.

    • I often have very vivid, very realistic dreams. So much so that it often takes several minutes to unravel what has occurred in my sleeping mind from the material world of my opened eyes. Such is the force and vibrancy of these dreams that they often invoke more powerful emotion than anything that occurs to me in the waking realm. The sad part is that these dreams and images fade so quickly, becoming ragged and threadbare as the minutes pass. Often I’m left with little more than disjointed images of the drama played out so vividly in my sleeping state. Often I will induce the dreamlike state in the time between waking up and actually rousing myself properly from the comfort of the bed. On those occasions I seem to occupy a world which lies somewhere between reality and dream. In this place I’d say I hallucinate rather than dream, but I confess I find it weirdly invigorating! Is this where I get my inspiration? Rarely in truth! That seems to come from idle musing, or from an absence of thought when I’m possibly at my most relaxed and least cognitive. As to the meaning of dreams I try to be rational but I suspect that there are mysteries of the brain we have yet to unravel. Who knows what lies deep within the synapses of the mind!

      • Hi Glyn!
        Good to see you here. Hope all is well?
        The inbetween state sounds quite fascinating! Would be interested to try that one.
        Yes, I’m with you on the disappearance of the best ones. Sometimes I want to grab hold of them before they trickle through my fingers, but rarely get the opportunity.
        Thanks for sharing,

  2. I regularly have terrible nightmares that leave me shattered in the morning and haunt me for years. They occur more often when I’m stressed. Lately I’ve been having dreams that have been terrifying and really sad. I dream that I see giant tidal waves coming and I’m trying to find a place to shelter from them. Sometimes I have a loved one with me, sometimes I’m alone. I looked it up and it said a tidal wave represents feeling overwhelmed. It does make sense.
    Annoyingly, I had a dream when I was a little girl about a man with giant blades coming out of his knuckles. I could have made millions if I’d made it into a story as people seem to enjoy the Wolverine stories!

    • Goodness, Rachael, the tidal wave sounds scary, especially if your loved ones are with you. Hope you don’t get too many of those now. You obviously also glean ideas from your dreams too. Yes, put them down next time and beat the rush, lol. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  3. I had a reoccurring dream that inspired me to write a book in which dreams play a major role in the plot. I am fascinated by dreams because they are so mysterious. My husband used to suffer from sever night terrors which are now greatly controlled, but every now and then, we still get a scare. I like testing out the many theories of dream interpretation, but mostly I like the idea of being able to work things out in my sleep.

    • Hi Toi,
      Thanks for sharing your experience. It’s interesting how it has inspired you in your work. I’m so glad your husband’s bad dreams are largely now in control.

  4. I’m honored to have appeared in your dream Jane – accent and all! I often have vivid dreams of things that happen in the future. I should write them down. Years ago I had a dream about my son – this was well before he was born. I’ve also dreamed about places and people that I eventually go to or meet. So you never know, we just may bump into each other at a conference and I just might be wearing a red dress!

    • Wow, Tammy. I’ve never dreamt about stuff that later becomes true. That’s amazing! Perhaps we will eventually meet. I’d love that:) Thanks for stopping by the blog. Lovely to see you here x

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