N is for Nightmares

Nightmares. What a deliciously heart pounding subject. We’ve all had them. Mine usually involve spiders. In fact for years I had the same recurring dream. I would be asleep in my bed and wake up to find thousands of spiders spinning a cage of webbing around me. Even though I knew I was asleep, my heartbeat would speed up and it would be hard to breathe. Worse was the inability to move and swipe the webs away.

They say that dreams are our brain’s way of working through all the psychological mess we avoid during the day. Or maybe I’m making that up, but it sounded good, right? Anyway, I can remember one nightmare from my childhood that seems silly now, but at the time I was terrified (I was around 8 or 9 years old). It went something like this…

I’m hiding behind the couch while my parents watch TV late at night. Suddenly the roof is ripped off the top of the house, my parents disappear and a giant alien space ship is hovering above me in the air. All I want is to remain hidden, but a bright light sucks the couch up and I’m exposed as the alien flies toward me on a large disk. When he’s right in front of me I realize it’s a humongous chocolate chip cookie. I don’t remember what the alien looked like, or what my fate was, but I remember the chips sticking out that were as big as my head.


Did you see Rise of the Guardians? It came out last December maybe? Anyway, LOVED the nightmares in it. They’re made of black sand, easy to slip into your dreams one grain at a time.

The Magic Wakes all started with a nightmare that I had when I was 19. It grew and developed as I had others that could be linked together. Eventually I gave them all to Talia and let her find a way to work through it.

For those of you who have read the book, each of Talia’s dreams were a dream that I had. Yeah, I’ve got some deep subconscious issues I think. But you know that iconic song…

“And I find it kind of funny, I find it kind of sad, the dreams in which I’m dying are the best I ever had.” (I loved Adam Lambert’s version)

But, hey. I’m a writer and weird dreams are a blessing I guess. Here’s a clip from TMW and one of my disturbing dreams with a bit of extra that didn’t make it into the book.

“Talia crouched behind the charred remains of an aeroflyer (was a helicopter in my dream). She squeezed her eyes shut, but since she dreamed, the chaos and carnage remained visible. The familiar scene permanently burned on her retinas.
As she watched, the aeroflyer transformed from a charred mess to a perfectly bright and smooth metal. Her reflection stared back. Half her face was badly burned and falling away from her skull. The other half was blood splattered but otherwise unmarred.”

Here I deviate from Talia. My dream jumped to a crowed hospital where I sat on a gurney surrounded by those that barely survived the invasion. People moaned and cried, doctors and nurses ran from place to place, but I sat feeling nothing. I just stared at everything around me until a man came towards me. He was a doctor and he carried a syringe. He lay his hand on the good side of my face and whispered he was sorry and I could feel my heart breaking. The tears burned like acid as they slid down the ruined side of my face. He then kissed my good cheek and gave me the shot. End of dream.

Did I die? Did he kill me? Or was he helping me? I’ll never know, but I know I loved him dearly in that dream. *sigh*

What is the one dream or nightmare that has stuck with you through the years?


About charitybradford

Science fiction and fantasy writer and blogger. My first novel is now available--The Magic Wakes (WiDo Publishing, 2013)

Posted on April 16, 2013, in Blog Hop, Blogging A to Z, World of Sendek. Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. Chocolate chip cookie – funny. I don't think any of my dreams have morphed into stories.I always dream about someone breaking into our house, which is odd, because we have an alarm system.

  2. I once dreamed I was sucked into hell while talking on a pay phone…that one stayed w/ me

  3. That is a strange dream. I have a truce with spiders and I don't dream about them. Thankfully. My nightmares generally involve me trying to save someone but I'm unable. I can't fly or do what needs to be done to make the person safe. It seems we always get away but not without a lot of trouble first. Wouldn't be much of a story if we took the easy way out I suppose. 😉

  4. The first "nightmare" I'd ever heard of was in a Piers Anthony book. Now they are everywhere.

  5. I remember many of my dreams. Oddly enough, some of them are actually true. I have dreamt things about friends that I haven't seen in years and those things actually happened to that person that night while I was dreaming them. Freaky wierd. I have also had Very Real Conversations with people who are dead. I remember them in detail. Word for word. I can always tell when I am having a Real Conversation vs just a dream about that person because if it is Real they are Young (in their 30s or so). If it is just a memory dream, they will look how I remember them at that time.

  6. Are you telling me we need to worry about an alien invasion in real life? Yikes.No nightmare has ever stuck with me. My dreams tend to be bizarre, but rarely scary. The scary ones fade quickly.

  7. Pitch is an awesome villain. I once dreamt as a child about killer dogs after everything I thought I was safe. The dream ended with a dog jumping at me out the dirty clothes basket. Don't ask me how it got there.

  8. Ooo, that is a good one Sheena-kay! Nightmares always end up in the least expected places.

  9. Goodness I hope not! I've never had any of my dreams come true but one. I dreamed one night that my grandma was young again and playing baseball for some reason. It was a black and white dream–which is weird for me since I dream in color. Anyway, the next morning we found out she had passed away in the night. So, I guess she was young again, but I still don't know if she liked to play baseball.

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