Dream Journals for Writing Inspiration and Ideas

Writing Inspiration Through DreamingHumankind has always been fascinated by the world of dreams. While we sleep, our brain processes the myriad thoughts, images, and events of our lives, and creates surrealistic landscapes that entertain us. Dreams occur during the REM phases of sleep, and are considered a necessary and healthful part of life.

Dreams can become a wonderful source of writing inspiration. The imagery from your subconscious is unfiltered by your logical thought processes, and often combine the strange and unusual in unexpected ways. Dreams are often emotionally evocative, which is why you may wake up elated, scared, or upset after a particularly memorable dream. These experiences are worth recording and incorporating in your writing, to encourage such responses from your readers.

Make Dream Journaling a Habit

Although many people don’t remember their dreams, you can encourage yourself to remember your dreams by keeping a dream journal and a lamp beside your bed. If you wait until you get dressed and get your first cup of coffee, you most likely won’t remember much at all. Get into the practice of writing down anything you remember, before getting out of bed.

You may only remember a color or an emotion, instead of actual events occurring within your dream world at first. With time and practice, you will recall more about each dream, with more clarity. Don’t worry about whether or not what you are writing makes sense. As long as you can write somewhat legibly first thing in the morning, you will be able to come back and mine your dream journal for creative tidbits.

Dream Interpretation

While dreams are very creative and inspiring all by themselves, dream interpretation can add a new layer of clarity and depth to your dreams. There are many dream interpretation books and websites available, explaining what certain symbols mean in the conscious world. Even if you don’t believe that dreams are a reflection of your real life, using dream interpretation you can come up with new plots for your fiction writing.

The Dream Workbook: Discover The Knowledge and Power Hidden in Your Dreams by Jill MorrisAlso, pay attention to unusual aspects of your dreams. For example, I rarely dream in color or in audio. So when I do notice a color, or actually hear words, I do my best to remember them and see if they hold any meaning in my life. Color within a story works well as a metaphor for the theme of your story, or can simply set the mood in your setting or your character’s outfits. Audio doesn’t often translate as well into a novel, but snippets of dialog can be used from your dreams if you’re lucky enough to catch them.

Do you keep a dream journal? Have you ever used elements of your dreams in your writing? Has a story idea ever woken you up in the middle of the night?

Published by

Kimberlee Ferrell

As a freelance writer and blogger, Kimberlee Ferrell has developed some keen insights on web publishing. She is capable of crafting superior articles, blog posts, and web copy that can empower your business, helping you to get noticed in the digital sea. She has lived in multiple states all across the U.S., and has a unique worldview and a fresh perspective to incorporate in your freelance writing needs. From the midnight lights of Las Vegas to the down home hospitality of Huntsville, she has used each experience to hone her writing skills and expand her knowledge. Now located in small town Iowa, she has renovated her freelance writer career. Her main areas of focus are tarot, spirituality, and writing.

4 thoughts on “Dream Journals for Writing Inspiration and Ideas”

  1. I don’t keep a journal as such, I do not write all my dreams down.

    However I do keep a pen and paper beside my bed for when I do dream about something related to the a story that I am currently involved in or a story that I am considering/developing.

    For me it could be something as simple as seeing a character standing in an open field or complex like a interactive scene between characters. Usually I see it from a 3rd person perspective, like I am standing there watching on.

    On one occasion I dreamt I was the main character. That sequence ended up in my novel as it perfectly joined two bits of story that I had been having trouble in joining. Since the dream was from a different perspective I figured it was important and it was.

    As Kimberlee mentioned, being conscious of aspects of your dream that are out of the norm for you may lead to something that could be important in your writings.

    As for waking up in the middle of the night, yes it has happened to me. On a couple of occasions it has happened multiple times in one night, each time writing something down…. it is not good when you need to wake up for early in the morning for work 🙂

  2. For some reasons I can not understand creative and uplifting dreams come in a row to me every October . They are so colorful and nice that I almost get addicted to dreams and feel sorry for the daytime which came …
    I used to keep a journal … to understand better my inner self …It was useful to read back ….

Comments are closed.