We all have that moment, even those of us who aren’t writers. Of course… those of us who are have a huge decision to make; a large decision that could adversely affect our creativity… because the dream that we just had, the dream that is already delicately slipping through our fingers is fading away faster than we can get ourselves sorted. So, we come to that decision – do we get up? Do we take the time to roll out of bed (into the cold hair, or the hot sticky night – as you’ll take it) and find paper, or turn on our laptop to write it down. Will we even remember it properly by the time we do?
I know for a long time I tried writing it on my laptop, which stays beside my bed. However, when I got past the point of booting it up, and rediscovering how to SEE after that bright light blinded me… I oftentimes found that I forgot exactly what it was that I wanted to scribble down to begin with. My amazing and vivid dream about a man who ruled the underworld but came up for a brief day and found himself dazzled and in love by sunlight in a woman’s hair… suddenly turned into “Uh, there was a dude who did… er… something.”
There were, of course, those times that I woke up with the dream so vivid in my mind that I was positive I wasn’t going to forget it before the morning was out… only to find that there wasn’t one recollection of it in my mind after I’d woken up. Hm. Well, that’s not very helpful, is it.
I had also tried the method of keeping an ordinary spiral notebook by my bed. >_> That worked so well as me ripping out pages, losing the things I needed, spilling my morning coffee on it… and treating it like the little 3 dollar notebook that it was. Okay. There was an issue. I needed to solve it – I was having all of these fantastic dreams and then letting them slip through my creative fingertips because I couldn’t keep up with writing them down.
In truth, I’d had the same moments during the day. I’d have a thought, a whimsy phrase – I’d see someone with an expression on their face and it would spark imagination… and by the time I got somewhere that I could write it down, it was gonzo from my mind. As writers, we take inspiration from everything around us… from the way the sun falls through the leaves to the way that the old man at Starbucks keeps checking his phone. And most certainly, in my case, we take a very large and vast amount of inspiration from those things we call dreams.
I needed a solution… and my solution was to get my ass to Barnes and Nobels and buy something that I wasn’t just going to allow to be tossed aside. I ended up getting THIS journal (thought not as expensive here) for around 15 bucks. It may not seem like a lot, but I’ve filled up about 15 pages of it with thoughts, with ideas, with inspiration. I even have a dream that I wrote out in a page, a short scene from the beginning of it. The fact that it is something nicer makes me want to take care of it more… honestly, the aesthetics of it make me feel nice when I wake up and write in it by the faint light spilling from my bathroom. I found something that worked for me – maybe some of you can totally manage the blaring light of your laptop, or writing in that spiral notebook. But for me, having something nice, and completely separate for just writing inspiration did the trick.
And I can tell you, finally getting to remember all of those dreams? Makes a big difference!
Until later, keep reading and writing!
Author Amanda McCormick