As I have said before, I don’t take any stock in the idea that dreams carry meaning that one must interpret the next morning to see what one’s subconscious is saying. As I may have also said, I do think there is something to be said for the act of interpretation. When somebody is trying to interpret his or her dreams, then his or her interpretation is what carries the important information. So when yesterday morning I automatically tried interpreting a dream the night before I soon felt guilty for doing so. However, my interpretation has weight based on the fact that these ideas came to me when I was awake.
Of course, as I have waited this long to write about it I can’t remember every detail of my dream. But I remember that it primarily dealt with my father berating me for not living up to my potential as a writer, specifically in terms of screenwriting. That was why I went for a degree in Media Studies instead of English, after all. At some point he egged me to go into a nearby movie theater for some reason I can’t remember. I think the idea was “why don’t you go see what your degree is doing for you” or something like that. I went into the theater and just asked what was playing before I turned around and left.
My father then challenged me to a foot race. He won while I couldn’t make it more than a few feet before stumbling over. Up to that point I wasn’t drunk but I felt like it as I fell. He then further berated me for filling my body with toxins, specifically alcohol. (Obviously this is my father in the dream, but not in real life. Not only did he not look like my real father, I’m far more physically fit than him.)
To address the last point first, I wondered if it had anything to do with the fact that I had a cheap beer before I went to bed. I tried to get a light one to avoid headaches, but I did wake up a little sick. I may have regretted having that beer once I woke up. Then again, in real life my father doesn’t approve of drinking, even if it is just one light beer for the evening. Either way, I think I’m going to avoid Coors Light from now on.
It was the other issue that made me think. What ever did happen to my desire to write a screenplay? I wrote two in college. Neither of which were great, but they showed much promise. I got the basic idea of storytelling. I’m not too bad with dialogue. Aside from a few false starts, though, I never really bothered after I graduated. I switched to short stories and novels. I’m still not making much money but I’m advancing much further with that idea than what I set out to do originally. So it’s not like I’m lazy when it comes to writing.
I think the biggest problem with writing screenplays is that from my understanding, studios won’t even look at them anymore unless they’re writing with one of two or three specific screenwriting computer programs, which all cost hundreds of dollars. Granted, if I sold a screenplay to the right studio that would pay off the software greatly. (Is it still a million dollars a script? I lost touch. I probably would have better luck with a smaller studio, anyway, but it’s good to aim high.) But for a long time I couldn’t afford it to start with.
With my recent raise I probably can afford that program. I’m not able to research this as I write this blog post—I’m at home, and I’m going to publish this post via my phone with a 2G connection. But I’ll look into getting that software as soon as I can. When it comes down to it, I do want to try to sell a screenplay. None of the stories I’m working on will work, though. What do I do for a plot?
I’m going to put my two novels on hold yet again, but this time possibly only for a week. I’m going to spend all of next week working out a plot for a movie idea. I normally try to rush these things. This time I’m going to work on this plot until it’s ready to turn into a script. I’m not abandoning the two novels. Far from it—I’m already well-invested in them. But I get the drive now to sell a screenplay. It’s too late to get nervous about it. I just have to dive right in. At the same time, I don’t want to rush it too much.
The other night I had a dream that my father judged me for not following my dream to make it in the screenwriting world. It all comes down to which dream I want to fulfill.