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Monday, June 21, 2010

Writing Fiction: Dreaming with My Eyes Open

by Mary Beth 

When we were at the beach a week and a half ago, my husband Curt had two of our kids outside swinging. "Daddy," my youngest said as she soared high on her swing, "I can dream with my eyes open!"

Curt thought he knew what she meant so he probed a bit to find out if he was guessing right. "Are you dreaming right now?" he asked her.

"Oh yes!" she said.

"What are you dreaming?" he asked.

She proceeded to tell him an elaborate tale about knights and kings and princesses and dragons. And, she pointed out, it was all happening in front of her eyes even though she wasn't asleep. Curt later told me this story and smiled as he said, "She's just like her mama!"

I admit. I dream with my eyes open a lot. While I am running. While I am driving. While I am washing dishes or sitting still. As I told someone recently: I am never idle and never bored. I get to go places, meet people and live adventures. Who cares if the places, people and adventures aren't actually happening? They are to me.

Novel writing has been a great extension of the dreams I dream with my eyes open. I get to tell the stories that entertain me and hope they entertain others as well. I love the possibilities that lie in front of me as I spend time this summer investigating ideas and fleshing out characters, determining what my next steps will be, my next novel-writing adventure will be. The world of storytelling is filled with potential. New ideas wait around every corner, hiding within the "What if?" question most writers are very good at asking.

I love dreaming with my eyes open. My life is all the richer for it.

MaryBeth Whalen is passionate about her Lord, her family and her writing. She is an author of fiction and non-fiction titles. Her first novel, "The Mailbox" has been released and she is working on her next two titles.

You can find more information about her here as well as her ministries page:

MaryBeth's is a Proverbs 31 Ministries speaker.

1 comment:

  1. So looking forward to this interview today. MaryBeth has six children and manages to still work on her writing. Since I too have many children underfoot it is nice to talk to a kindred spirit in the area of working around busy "mom" schedules.