1. Arannir

    Arannir Active Member

    Sep 16, 2013
    Likes Received:
    Grimsby/Manchester, UK

    Implementing Dreams into a ‘Diary’ format

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Arannir, Jul 22, 2019.

    I’m planning a story that takes place over the space of a calendar year, with each day number being displayed above as a chapter heading. It could be closely interrupted as a diary format (1st person/present tense).

    The protagonist is being developed to be an avid dreamer, someone who’s true feelings are being told through these dreams sequences. Here’s an example of what I think would work...


    Day 25
    I’m doing this, this and this...


    I’m dreaming this, this and this...

    I know this would work but it doesn’t seem as fluid as I’d like it to. Maybe a little bit too on the nose for my liking. Any other ideas on how I could implement this?

    Thank you
  2. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Spitting .45 caliber grammar.... Contributor

    Jan 8, 2017
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    Rhode Island
    Well, you'll find plenty of people who tell you dream sequences are a no-no in writing because they're cliche, trite, and can't reveal much information because, by definition, a person can only dream about what they already know. I'm not in total agreement, but if every day/entry involves a dream? That would seem to get tired quickly.
  3. Capslock

    Capslock Member

    Mar 26, 2019
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    A dream diary could get interesting if you find a way to link certain dreams together. The linked dreams could uncover answers to something. The character that documents these dreams might start an investigation about (?) , and solve that through dreamland.
  4. suddenly BANSHEES

    suddenly BANSHEES Senior Member

    Apr 27, 2011
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    the wasteland, baby!
    I feel like a good way to separate the dream sequences from the reality sequences would be to possibly change the tense, or some other stylistic change. For example, the dreams could be in past-tense, to show that the narrator is writing them down after the fact, while their real-life is shown in present-tense, implying that the narrator is telling/writing down the story as it's happening.

    Either way, I dig this concept - a contrast between how the character acts and speaks vs. their true feelings and beliefs being shown through their subconscious dreaming. Or something along those lines. I feel like it could be a neat way to show what kinda character they are.

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