Monday, August 15, 2005

The Upside of Nightmares

I barely slept a wink last night. I spent the hours between 11:00 PM and 5:30 AM tossing and turning, staring at the ceiling, drifting off only to not quite make it all the way into fitful slumber. I glared at the clock some time around 4:00 AM and then buried my face back into the pillow determined to fall asleep. I did manage to, but it was not a pleasant experience by any stretch of the imagination.

I had a nightmare. It's been quite some time since I've had one, and in truth I've never really minded them. I can lucid dream, so oftentimes when things go bad I just change them around to my liking. On the occasions when I don't, it's my morbid sense of curiosity that prevents it. I want to see what happens if I don't. I want to see where the nightmare takes me.

Last night (or should I say early this morning) was neither of those times. I was so caught up in the nightmare itself that the decision to stay in it, or change it to my liking, never entered into my mind. It was like being sucked down in an undertow.

The dream wasn't one of those disjointed deals either. Each aspect of the dream had a logical progression to it. One scene flowed into the next, the terror building with each. When I finally woke up, my heart pounding, the blood rushing in my ears, I could think of only one thing...Holy crap - what a great idea for a book!

I grabbed my notebook and pen (which when you press the clicker also has a little light that turns on so I can see what I'm doing) and started scribbling like mad. Of course some things had to be changed, and other ideas flowed from that. I don't have it all figured out, but I have what appears to be the terrifying backbone of a horror / thriller novel (with some strong romantic elements that my dreaming brain had not put in, but my writer's brain insisted needed to be there).

Hours later, the nightmare still lingers in the back of my head and my bleary eyes are a testament to just how little sleep I managed the night before. But I have to say, the lack of sleep and horrific images that riddled what little sleep I had in no way dim the thrill of discovering a new idea for a book smothered within its depth.


Nikki said...

Was there a sock in this dream by any chance???

Only you would have a nightmare and think it's a good thing. Me? I'd be turning on every light in the house and curling up in the fetal position!!

Kelly said...

No, there was no sock. That was Friday's nightmare.

Maxx said...

Do I get to hear about this dream so I can dig around in your psyche or what?

Tess said...

Sorry about being kept awake after the nightmare, but at least you got a story out of it! Very cool.

My own current ms sprang from a dream (rather than a nightmare). As good a source as any, say I :-)

Kelly said...

I'll give you the rundown once I finish processing all the info and trying to get it down so it makes sense. I'll email you tonight, or later today if I get time.

Maxx said...

okey dokey. I'll await the synopsis.

Melissa Marsh said...

I *hate* nightmares. But what I hate worse is the after-effects - it feels like you're still within the grip of your dream the rest of the day.
But I'm glad you came up with a new book idea!!!

Michelle said...

Wow. Dreams can be so vivid! Glad you got a book idea out of it. :)

Amy said...

I was thinking, oh, book idea, the whole time, even though I don't write horror. lol

Funny you should mention the pen with the light. Someone brought those up on our blog today. I might have to find one for myself!