“Creative imaging and dreaming are just so similar that they’ve got to be related.”

Stephen King

Stephen King

In an interview from 1993, Stephen King described how his dreams have helped him with his writing of contemporary horror, suspense, science fiction and fantasy. He mentioned how his dreams present a powerful incubation place for creative thinking. Consider that next time you wakeup with a dream still resonating on your mind.

“One of the things that I’ve been able to use dreams for in my stories is to show things in a symbolic way that I wouldn’t want to come right out and say directly. I’ve always used dreams the way you’d use mirrors to look at something you couldn’t see head-on—the way that you use a mirror to look at your hair in the back. To me that’s what dreams are supposed to do. I think that dreams are a way that people’s mind’s illustrate the nature of their problems. Or maybe even illustrate the answers to their problems in symbolic language. When we look back on our dreams, a lot of times they decompose as soon as the light hits them. So, you can have a dream, and you can remember very vividly what it’s about, but ten or fifteen minutes later, unless it’s an extraordinarily vivid dream or an extraordinarily good dream, it’s gone. It’s like the mind is this hard rubber and you really have to hit it hard to leave an impression that won’t eventually just erase.”

Do our dreams represent a subconscious silliness, or otherwise irrelevant abstraction of reality? Or, do our dreams offer an opportunity to submerge into a conscious and meaningful effort, a place where we’re reorganizing our thoughts and solving our problems?

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