I Can Shapeshift into a Hare

by K. Trian

I took a class on Children’s Literature a few years ago, and we had to read that novel about the sparkling vamp who falls in love with a vapid high school girl, you probably haven’t heard of it. Anyway, I wrote a paper about it, can’t remember the topic anymore (probably some feminist rant), hence I did some author research and found out that the saga was inspired by a dream of Bella and Edward hanging about on a meadow. Apparently that was also where Meyer got the whole sparkling vampires idea from; a dream.

I wish my dreams looked like this.

I wish my dreams looked like this.

That explains a lot, considering how nutty dreams can get. In a dream it makes perfect sense that a group of ugly, hairy super villains drug the world leaders and imprison them in a half-burnt-down city and, through the leaders, control the whole world. Naturally the First Lady of the Evil Republic is a South-Korean artist who stuffs dead bodies inside her fleshy, bleeding “paintings.” Also, a change of pants will lock down the whole Villain HQ, so you have to be prepared to climb elevator shafts because there are no friggin’ stairs, and even if you can shapeshift into a hare, it’s no guarantee you can escape the prison city.

This is what my dreams are really like.

This is what my dreams are really like.

Sometimes a dream can incite a story idea though. You can take a part of it, like T did when he dreamed of a huge, violent riot, and we ended up putting that into Solus. But it’s a pity that no matter how you try, the terror of the dream just doesn’t come off as real from the pages as it did inside one’s head. That can be frustrating as well, but on the other hand, it’s also a great writing exercise. A dream can also work as a writing prompt, it doesn’t have to lead to an entire story.

Have your dreams made their way into your stories? Inspired you? How do you feel about basing stories on dreams? Feel free to share your thoughts!

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5 thoughts on “I Can Shapeshift into a Hare

  1. Interesting post! I normally don’t remember my dreams, but my friend has been practicing so he can control his dreams to a certain extent. It’s so that even while he sleeps, he can world build for his book, or make up a story. Unfortunately, I’m not as dedicated as him, and my sleep time is meant for sleeping. Daytime is meant for procrastinating, and night time is meant for writing a few pages. 😀

  2. My dreams have never made it into my stories, nor, unfortunately, have my stories made it into my dreams (dammit! I could do with a hot half-elf guy spicing up my dreams!)
    I have had really scary dreams though, and the scariest ones are the ones that feel real even when you wake up. I once dreamt that my sister had died in a car crash, and it took me at least ten minutes after waking up to realise that it had never happened.
    I seem to have a recurring thing about my family dying anyway – my brother was once killed by a poisonous butterfly (not quite so scary on waking up, because come on, subconscious, really?) and I also dreamt that my baby brother (who I haven’t got) murdered my parents with a hammer.
    On the positive side, a long time ago I got together with my boyfriend because I dreamt I was going out with him, which was something that until then I hadn’t even contemplated. It didn’t last, but it was interesting anyway.
    None of that’s pertinent, but I thought I’d share. 😉

    • Oh no, those nightmares sound really awful! But thanks for sharing 🙂 It’d be cool to be able to control one’s dreams, like Jian mentioned. T.Trian seems to dream more often of our stories, while I dream of random stuff. I often think after waking up: this would make a cool story! I might even think that while dreaming. But when I backtrack and the dream was actually like what I described above… maybe not 😀

      Anyhow, thanks for sharing your thoughts, Jian & Erica 🙂
      -K

  3. I’ve kept some dreams as ‘seeds’ for short stories I’ve yet to write, because they either had really striking imagery or some semblance of a sane plot. There’s one I’ve taken to calling ‘Rain On All Channels’ that was a sort of investigative horror dream where I (and another person who changed periodically) was trying to figure out why people were dissolving into black smoke and leaving their clothes behind, and involved a long scene in a hotel or maybe an apartment complex where we were following these wisps of black smoke through the halls and all the televisions were on — there were televisions everywhere — and each one was showing an outdoor scene where it was raining. Nothing else going on, just like…abandoned parking lots or woodlands or whatnot, raining. So this rain-on-all-channels while we were following the black ghost smoke.

    My nightmares tend to be more like disaster movies. There was one with a feel like the 1920’s with a cruise ship on fire crashing into the dock where I was standing…. Had a recent one involving an eruption of Mt. Fuji and subsequent rioting in the streets and such… Maybe it’s because I like disaster movies, I watch those kinds of documentaries all the time and I research them a lot because I plan to have some serious disasters in the later part of my series, but yeah, that’s how most of my nightmares are.

    Though there was this one where I dreamed I was in my bed and opened my eyes and a little silver wirework bicycle was rolling across the floor, and it was SO TERRIFYING for no real reason. Way more terrifying than the werewolf that jumped at me from my window a few moments later. Like…werewolf = yawn, self-moving miniature bicycle = HORRIBLE.

    • o.O That bicycle does sound creepy! But at the same time that’s just brilliant! Oh to be able to translate the horrors of dreams into writing… sometimes it’s so frustrating, the right words just keep slipping away. Because our WIP, Solus, has horror elements, we are really anal about the scenes that are supposed to be scary. Yes, it’s good to have beta-readers, but writing truly scary or disturbing is damn difficult!

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