Am I the only wannabe novelist who dreams about their works-in-progress? My dreams often include whole paragraphs floating through the air, interspersed with the faces of my characters, up close and personal. Do I have a writing obsession, or am I just nuts?
Sometimes during a rare night of deep sleep, I dream about some cracking plotlines and try to wake myself up to write them down. More often than not, when I do manage to wake myself up, I can’t remember them.
Sometimes I dream that my words are being narrated by somebody famous. This morning, during my groggy waking moments, new words came to me, delivered in the soothing tones of the narrator inside my head, who sounded remarkably like Vanessa Redgrave, in the preamble to an episode of Call the Midwife.
I reach for my laptop, still barely awake, clinging to the words and write them down.
Writing is such a solitary, all-consuming process. The desire to share what you have written with the world is overwhelming and becomes an obsession, and in my case, it’s been invading my dreams for quite some time.
You can’t write unless you’re obsessed. It’s a state of blessedness, in the sense that you’re lucky to do it, and a state of illness, because you’re not a normal person.
David Denby, film critic for The New Yorker Magazine
Well, that’s okay then, I’m nuts.