late-night mind movies

July 30, 2010

A lot of attention being paid to dreams these days; a lot of opinions being batted around about their depictions in media. It isn’t just how hot Joseph Gordon-Levitt looked in his bespoke suits or Tom Hardy’s inexplicable accent that has people talking about Inception. (Let’s ignore hype for a moment.) Dreams are, whether you personally believe it or not, are one of those universal experiences, and yet, none are ever the same. Still, recognizable themes run throughout, most frequently, that of personal danger, libido, and recognition of objects or places from life, even if that only takes the form of language being present. Trust me; you dream, unless your brain is malfunctioning, and in that case, please seek immediate medical attention.

I write about dreams quite a bit; I’m one of those lazy people who, when some transition or experience is better expressed in terms of metaphor, likes to have someone dream about something. I don’t know where I picked that up. My own dreams are nowhere near as literally explainable. I have intense, vivid dreams every single night, and for the last few months, I’ve been able to recall them in detail for a long time after I wake up. I’m not writing them down – that would eat up way too much time first thing in the morning, when I’d rather be hitting the snooze alarm and revisiting the dream I’m having. Still, though, they are rich and dense. Occasionally in my life, I go through periods where I dream intensely for several months, sometimes with good recall, sometimes not; there are various psychological theories why this might occur. I don’t know. I’m writing a novel right now, just about halfway through the first draft, and I don’t dream about my story at all (I rarely dream about myself as a participant at all, just a viewer). The characters aren’t telling me what to do in the dreams. It doesn’t work like that for me. Any one of the dreams I’ve had in the last seven months would make a novel all by itself, had I the folly of trying to write it out. That’s all right; I’m writing this book right now, thank you very much, and it still needs me to be present in it.

That makes three “realities” I have to exist in – the top world, the dream world, and the world of the novel (and then the sub-realities of the various TV shows, movies, and books I’m experiencing). It’s . . . somewhat exhausting.


A fun interview about science…

a new look

July 21, 2010

More to come.