Friday, October 28, 2011

How I Don't Start Writing.

Dear Globlets,

In my last WRIT100FictionSection class, we talked about how we start the writing process. One person said they go to sleep, because they find dreams to be a good source for ideas.

Well.

I had a dream last night where I was drunk. Surprise, surprise. And the city I was in was a triple-city combo: Victoria, Portland, and San Francisco. And maybe some third world country, too, at some point. First, I was in downtown Victoria. Similar to what happens in real life sometimes, I couldn't remember what order the streets were in because the intersections are all similar, and they get jumbled up in my head. I said, standing on Johnson Street, "I've lived here for two and a half years; I should know the streets like the back of my hand by now." Was I with someone? And I've been here longer than that. But I lived in Chile for two and a half years.

Then, I was waiting for the #14 bus, the one I take almost every day, but on the #6 route way out in Esquimalt, and when I realized this, I hopped on the #4 going down the cross street, and then I was in San Francisco. A couple of friends were on the bus, too, and I said, "This bus is not going to UVic, is it?" And they were like, "No, to Hillside." Which might have actually made sense if I hadn't been in San Francisco, because Hillside Mall and UVic are on the #4's route, but the scenery, of course, was totally different.

I jumped off the trolley (yes, trolley now) and started running to Yates Street, because I knew the #14 would go down it (in the opposite direction from UVic, mind you). I ran, and I ran, and I remember there was a lot more running after that. I ran past the courthouse on Blanshard Street in Victoria, and could see where I needed to get to again. My face was bright red, I was out of breath and drenched in sweat, so I stopped at the Red Lion Inn on Douglas Street, except it was actually a colourful tent in a China Town I didn't recognize. There was Johnny, the owner of the dim-sum restaurant in the Red Lion Inn, who we see every six weeks after we get our hair done. There were a lot of old Chinese men, and they all looked at me.
Gasping for air, I said, "Can I have a glass of water, please?"
Johnny turned around, and turned back with a glass in his hand.

At this point, I distinctly remember thinking whether or not I should chug the water, or drink it slowly so that my thirst would be better quenched. A compromise: I chugged half of it. The men were staring at me. I was wearing a black suit (somehow I realized this at that moment). I sloshed a sip of the remaining water in my mouth. The men kept staring. I swallowed the water, took another long sip, sloshed the water around in my mouth some more, letting every corner of my mouth get a little water, and I swallowed again. I'm surprised I didn't gargle. I did this four or five times, still being stared at, still in silence.

"Thanks," I said, and wiped my face with my black blazer, put on a pair of badass black sunglasses that I don't actually own. Then, remembering I was drunk, I thought about how drinking water and sweating would help me sober up. When I started running again, I dropped my iPod, keys, and sunglasses, which were now my mom's brown sunglasses. I picked up my stuff and shoved it in the ridiculously deep pocket of my black trousers.

And then I woke up.

I think I'll stick to other means of story idea formation.

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