Here’s a tiny bit about Hunter’s World from Fred’s website:
The village of Eastpoint, a close-knit Long Island community, has never been tested with a serious crime. At least, not until syndicated romance columnist John Hunter is found dead in his home, an apparent suicide. Even then, the townspeople accept the auslander’s demise in stride. But when Police Chief Hank Reed discovers a secret room filled with lewd paintings of Hunter and local married women, he wonders whether the collection was someone’s sick imagination or part of a duplicitous life.
It isn’t until the medical examiner’s official report declares that Hunter was murdered, followed by a leak of Hunter’s shocking exploits, that panic engulfs Eastpoint’s residents.
Dreams and Writing by Fred Lichtenberg, Guest Blogger
I had a dream! Actually I’ve had many dreams. Just last night I dreamt I was lost. I immediately checked dreammoods.com and discovered my being “lost” symbolized losing one’s direction (I have a good sense of direction so I dismissed that one). The other explanation had to do with adjusting to a new situation. That’s it! Hunter’s World is being released on May 18th. I have been agonizing over the results of the hardcover, my reviews, the tour, and sales…
Last night’s dream, or rather nightmare, made perfect sense. Dreams are a relatively new phenomenon for me. Over the years, I suffered from sleep apnea. Without getting too technical, sleep apnea is a chronic medical condition in which the individual stops breathing during sleep because of an obstruction of the upper airways. Studies show that a victim of this sleep crime might have had a dream or nightmare but the obstruction of air reduces his ability to recall them. (Not bad for nightmares).
I no longer suffer from sleep apnea (a topic for another forum) and dream like crazy. I keep a pen and pad on my nightstand ready to jot down any dream that comes my way (my wife would go nuts if I recorded my dreams into my phone’s memo feature – she’s a light sleeper).
But do dreams enhance one’s writing? Some of my best plots, characters and yes, names, have been created through dreams. Even dreams about our daily lives can be woven into a storyline.
So what should one do about their dreams? Don’t dismiss them. Learn to embrace your dreams. Those individuals, like me, who are curious, read about the symbolism. What makes your day tick? Sometimes dreams beat money spent in analysis.
For me, dreams unlock a host of thoughts, anxieties and creativity. I remember being stuck writing Double Trouble, a murder mystery about twins separated at birth. One brother is a hit man for the mob, the other a cop. Their meeting by chance creates tension as the hit man who stole diamonds from his boss suddenly is killed. Guess who’s on the hook for the diamonds? I was halfway through the book and hit a dead end. I mean a wall. I thought, how am I going to continue? As many writers do, I stopped, put the book aside, and worked on another, which happened to be Hunter’s World.
After finishing Hunter’s World, I revisited Double Trouble, trying to overcome my impasse. I thought about it plenty. I remember because my apneas were no longer an issue. (Ok, you want to know how I overcame my apnea. A cardiologist friend advised me to sleep on my side rather than my back – It worked!). Like an epiphany, I began getting scraps of information, albeit, in the form of symbolism, but nevertheless, enough to provide ideas for pushing the story forward. I broke through my block.
First, I added a female character who remained for most of the story. From there, I created more scenes and followed her around until I no longer needed her – how cruel! I can honestly say my dreams increased my book by a third. The story added dimension and provided me with a better night’s sleep without the nightmares.
So do dreams play a significant role in writing? For me, the answer is a resounding yes. One caveat: unless you sleep alone, make sure you have a pen and pad close by. On the other hand, sleeping alone has its own benefits. Listening to your notes, rather than reading some chicken scratch, is a whole lot easier.
Thanks, Fred, for being my guest today. I love a good thriller, so I’m looking forward to reading Hunter’s World.
For more information about Fred and Hunter’s World, visit his website where you can read the first two chapters of the novel as well as follow the link to Fred’s Facebook account. Fred is a member of Mystery Writers of America and International Thriller Writers.