The fiction of Jessica A. Weiss comes in all forms-horror, suspense, fantasy, and erotica.

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Speculative fiction writer and editor. You can find links to her published work and current projects on the left side of the page.
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Friday, July 10, 2009

Which Came First: The Dream or The Story?

You feel the panic, the pain. Your legs are weighed down by gravity and you can barely breath. The door in front of you is opening and you instinctively know what's behind it. You watch as your breath solidifies before you. The hairs on your neck raise up in protest. Then...

You wake up.

The writer in you wants to grab a pen and paper to write the exact feelings and images you'd just experienced, because you know the way you felt would make a great scene in your current project. While stumbling around the room looking for light and writing materials, it all slowly seeps away from your memory. By the time you find what you need, you are left with only lingering chills- all the glorious words that had created your dream now gone back to the dream realm.

"Where's my Word Accordion when I need it?" You wonder, thinking of Stephen Kings Tommyknockers, as you stumble back to bed.

You return to dreaming.

This time, though, you are lost in the pages of that story you've been sweating over for a month. You can feel the dryness of your words, up to the point where it takes on a life of its own. Now is when the dream words fill in what's been missing. You've got to get it all written down before its all lost. Can you?

* * *

Which came first, the dream or the story? Do you find yourself writing what you dream about or dreaming what you write about? How often do they combine and make something completely unique, that you KNOW would be a bestseller, just to wake up and find all the important pieces are lost to your conscious mind?


  1. Some scenes come to me in dreams and while I daydream, as well as complete plots. Dreaming is a good source of ideas.

    As is showers. :D

    Nice to see you got the whole 'blog' thing straightened out. :)

  2. Just popping in to read your blog...

  3. Jannette,
    Sometimes my dreams are way to vivid to consider writing, at least for a few months. Had a nightmare the other night about one of my kids, great story idea; but until I can write it without fearing for my own child, it's going to sit in my idea notebook and simmer.

  4. Jessy,
    Thanks for coming by. I know you are busy with the book.