I didn’t believe in it either until taking a psych class in college. The professor’s husband was a hypnotist and he came out one day and put us all under.

I’d been doing it to myself all my life without realizing it. Extreme daydreaming. Some people call it The Zone or streaming conscious. It is the ability to shut down the left side of the brain (the logical and reasoning side) and let the right brain (artistic, emotional side) rule. This is the sweet spot for writers.

Sometimes it’s easier to get there, just put on some music. Other times I have to subject my mind to something really boring, like exercise. Once it’s on, it’s like a waking dream and I have a hard time shutting it down. Like today, I was going to town on my script but had to meet with a contractor about doing some damn bookshelves. He’s writing down all kinds of numbers, talking about all sorts of materials and I’m staring into space, at some rock concert getting pelted with bottles. The poor guy’s gotta think I’m some sort of freak.

If you know this “Other World,” what do you do to get there?

Edited Note: Max inspired this post. She says “Writing is dreaming awake.” She should know, she is a pro screenwriter. Check out her blog entry, “Thanks.”


14 thoughts on “Hypnotized

  1. I like that – dreaming awake. I get that creative side mostly when I first wake up and come out of real sleep (real dreaming). I sit in bed a little longer, and it just comes to me. Or, I go out to the porch for a smoke, alone, and bang – I see it. It may higely help that these rooms are in the creative section of the house (per feng shui).

    I need to try music though. For those times I am sitting at the desk, stuck.

  2. Yeah, Michelle, you need to turn up that Clay, girl. Put you right in that dream state.

    I don’t know how you do it, wake up and write before work. But it makes sense, you are coming off of real dreams.

  3. I’m starting to believe I’m cursed. Cause all the creative part of me emerges when I’m somewhere I can’t even jot my thoughts down. Last time, I was at the super market, in front of the milk section reading ingredients and calories.. and it hit me. But, my luck, no notebook or pen in my bag (note to self: notebook and pen in my bag right now). The other time, I was standing in front of the counter of the phone company arguing (no, that guy was arguing, I was SCREAMING) about them having messed up our bill. I think that guy irritated me so much that ideas came banging at my brains. By the time I got back home… they were not there any longer (note to self: next time I get that guy’s phone number. If he’s always such an ass, maybe I should be calling him every week).

  4. Sophia, maybe you should get one of those portable tape recorder things. I have thought of doing that myself. Personally, I always zone out in the grocery – I hate it so much.

  5. So, in other words, shopping can be extremelly dangerous to people who write. So good to know it’s not only me. A portable tape recorder doesn’t sound like a bad idea, Michele. Not a bad idea at all.

  6. This is bad, but some of my best stuff comes when I am driving. The music is blasting and the landscape is wooshing by and I’m about a million miles away, off in storyland. And then the car stops and its my parking lot at work and I’m thinking ‘oh, this place, right…’.

  7. Who’s at the wheel Beth? LOL.
    I do that too. Especially on the highway, that dotted line swooping by over and over and over. The ER docs used to say that all the time, that the dotted line puts people to sleep at the wheel.

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