1. Jayodi
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    Jayodi New Member

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    An idea to bounce off you all?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Jayodi, Aug 16, 2010.

    Hey, I've been playing with an idea for about two years now, and I want to know what you guys think of it.

    In something I'm writing, every time the main character loses consciousness, be it going to sleep, or being knocked out, or whatever, it will switch to a "dream world" of sorts, or an alternate reality within his mind that grows as the story progresses(If anyone has watched Clannad at any point in time, it's similar to the field with lights).

    Sort of a story within a story, if you will, as each time it switches to the dream world, it continues where the last bit left off.

    The passages within the dream world are brief, usually not more than 3-4 paragraphs, as they only tell a small, small bit of a larger story, just to give you a repeated glimpse.

    He starts out with complete amnesia, not knowing who or where he is, but, again, as the story progresses, he learns more about himself and the world he's in, possibly tapping into an inner power he was previously unaware of, inspired by the theory that we only use a small portion of our brain.

    I was considering the dream world playing a large role in the story, as it allows him to see the inner workings of his mind.

    For an idea of the "mood" of the dream world, listen to Hide and Seek by Imogen Heap (The song I listen to when I write these excerpts, and the one to inspire them in the first place)

    And yes, I have probably a dozen of these written already, I was just wondering if I should keep them, trash them, or save them for something else?

    Thanks for the input!
     
  2. Fedora
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    Fedora Active Member

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    There's nothing wrong with a dream sequence, as long as you don't use it. I tried one for foreshadowing in a short story I was writing, and I quickly realized that all it does is waste your reader's time. It's frustrating for your audience, more clich├ęd than a farm boy with a lightsaber, and a waste of valuable page real estate. They're a pretentious gimmick; there's never any real reason to have one under any circumstances, unless your character is in a coma or you're writing the script for Inception.

    But if you think you can pull it off, go right ahead.
     
  3. erik martin
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    erik martin Contributing Member

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    I am not quite so antidream sequence as the previous poster. However, more often than not, I feel that they detract more than add from the stories I see them in. But that isn't absolute. Your idea sounds interesting. As you will hear, it's all in how it is written. I would go ahead and try it, get a draft and see how you like it.
     
  4. ojduffelworth
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    ojduffelworth Contributing Member

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    I was just wondering if I should keep them, trash them, or save them for something else?
    Without reading what you have written nobody can answer that. The quality of your writing is what will hold an audience, above and beyond the subject matter. Your dream scenes may be brilliant, they may be junk. How long is a piece of string?
     
  5. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    do you like it?
     
  6. stubeard
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    stubeard Active Member

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    In my opinion, you should make sure the dream sequences are a means to an end and not an end in themselves. They must be relevant to the story and not just thrown in because you think they're cool.
     
  7. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    A story concept means nothing. I can tell you now, it has all been done before. What matters is how you write it, the characterization, the flow, the imagery, all of it.

    There's no benefit in asking what other people think of the concept! They'll either say,"Sounds great," or, "it sounds like a ripoff of..."

    If the idea stirs you, write it. Then ask people what they think of the final story. After they tell you what they don't like about it, revise it, usually several times, until you're happy with it or until you throw up your hands and say the hell with it.

    Please read this thread about What is Plot Creation and Development?

    It makes no sense to ask for opinions at this stage. Write it, or do not write it.
     
  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i have to ditto cog's standard reply here...

    my own take on the concept is that it would work ok in a movie, where it's often been done successfully, but i'm not sure it will in a novel... might be too confusing for readers...
     
  9. Peerie Pict
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    Peerie Pict Contributing Member Contributor

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    Remember that the only thing that made Inception interesting (IMO) is that the dream world had tangible connections with the real world. The dreams were a portal by which ideas could be implanted in the minds of others.

    Without real world consequences, how is your dream world going to maintain the interest of the reader? What is at stake?
     

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