I've had extremely vivid dreams all my life that I remember in great detail after I wake up, and can still remember years later. I don't know where they come from, but it feels like I'm really there, as someone else, and when I wake up again I'm usually very surprised to find myself back in this life in my bed. Sometimes I'm disappointed to come back because I never find out how the story ends, sometimes they're more cryptic and I have no idea why I saw what I saw.

I know dreams are the way we process our stuff, but I also know aboriginal peoples coined words for certain kinds of dreams, like soul traveling, to put it simply. These dreams are not the same as visions. Visions usually carry portent or some kind of direct communication, but my story dreams are exactly that- other people's stories in other places and times.

The first introduction I had to this idea was in Terry Pratchett's book Wyrd Sisters. Hwel wrote plays for the Dysk Theater from dreams he had, and the stories would come so fast while he slept that he barely had time to write even a handful of it. That's how I've felt all my life.

I used to be a terrible writer. I had to learn it in college, practicing essays and literary criticism and technical summaries and eventually stuff like a 50-page paper, and it was very laborious. I've kept handwritten journals for many years. Twelve years ago I transitioned to blog journals. Two years ago I transitioned to all-public blogging. It's definitely not for the faint-hearted. I've seen all the advice out there. All I can say is if you aren't slogging through a million words with your own brains for years and years, all the advice in the world isn't going to make you a better writer. It comes from heart and soul. You either love and crave word construction, or you don't. You know you're a writer when you can't stop writing. I see writers as intellectual athletes, willing to put the work into doing what it takes to convey ideas well. Sharing dreams is a great writing exercise if some of you feel stumped.

Back to the dreams. If I'd written out all my dreams I'd have books and books and books out there. Some might even be movies by now. But just because I dream it doesn't mean I feel compelled to write it out. Some of them are super awesome and some of them are crap, and either way they all make great writing practice. I sprinkle them through blogs here and there, have thought through the years I should make a dream blog, but really don't need to make another blog, you know? But once in awhile I need to write them out of my way, if that makes sense, so I think I'll put them here. Maybe one day down the road I'll link back to other dreams so they're all in one collection here.