Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2004 2:13 pm Posts: 12379 Location: The Left Coast
ONBC: What were your inspirations for the story?
GD: I don't think I really had any. That is, there are any number of books I've read that contributed enormously - G.M. Fraser's Flashman novels, Conan Doyle, Wilkie Collins, Proust, Robbe-Grillet, Burroughs, Coover, Austen, Patrick O'Brien – and things I've seen – Kubrick, Godard, Resnais, Lynch, Bacon, Velázquez, Alma-Tadema – the list goes on. But these are all very general, things I've loved, but not explicitly thought about when writing. I started the book after a strange dream, and then kept going (and going) to places I hadn't imagined.
_________________________________________________________ You can't judge a book by its cover.
The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.
How great to have such an imagination and then to be able put it into words on paper. I guess that is why some are talented novelist and others just story tellers (not that isn't a talent too). I am neither - but can take advantage of others' talents by reading their works. I wonder if at the beginning Mr. D. thought his strange dream was really a dream or a nightmare?
Post subject: Re: Gordon Dahlquist Q&A #12
Posted: Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:49 pm
JDZ Web Designer
Joined: Sun May 01, 2005 1:21 am Posts: 19422 Location: Houston, Texas
That's great...that the main storyline of the novel was just pure imagination. (And a dream.) I've always been in awe of anyone who can write -- and to write characters from your own imagination is just amazing to me.
Since I have no imagination at all, I am always happy to find that others find ways to create because I love to read. I am glad that dream was one of those that you could remember or we would have all lost out.
_________________________________________________________ "If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." Will Rogers
Since the courts in Manhattan are near Chinatown, I like jury duty, as it means a few days of excellent lunches, stalking the perfect dumpling. In January 2004, I was "lucky" enough to be selected for a three-week trial (at the very same time Martha Stewart went to trial in the next building over – we all had to walk past the 15 media vans to get to our courthouse), but New York was hit with a ferocious, sub-zero ice storm that went on for days, which made it impossible to wander in the way I had hoped. So we jurors were marooned for close to four hours each day in the jury room – it all promised to be grim. But the second night of the trial I had a strange dream, where a friend of mine appeared in the exact garb of one of The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters' three main characters, Doctor Svenson, and together we faced a mystery in a strange, dark, Victorian building – kidnappings, incantations, and a creepy upstairs room without a door. While I very rarely remember my dreams, the next morning I found this one percolating in my head quite vividly. But then, for no reason I can recall, I took out a notebook, and two strange things happened. First, I began to write a story in prose, instead of a play. And second, I began writing about – instead of the doctor, who I would get to almost off-handedly in another 100 pages or so – a willful young woman from the West Indies whose fiancé has abandoned her without explanation, making it up as I went along. By the end of the trial I had the first chapter, and I was hooked.