For years, I have written short stories. I've published articles and co-authored a technical book but there was one thing I was convinced I couldn't write...until I had a dream.
I awoke one morning in early 2012 with vivid memories of the beginning and ending of a dream about dragons. I could focus on any instant in those few scenes and see, taste, and feel everything. The dream was so real.
The dream's middle - spanning many years of the main character's life - was gone. I didn't have a clue about that. But even so, I knew that if I could write a short story - this would be one of the best short stories I'd ever written. Quite possibly the best.
It took a few tries before I could actually get anything written, but I finally found myself typing away late one evening on a laptop. A couple of hours and 1200 words later I had written....an opening scene. There was more to the first part of the dream than I had time to describe. "This would be a long short story," I mused to myself.
The next evening I wrote another 1400 words and still hadn't finished the beginning. My inward conversation was pricked again, "Uh oh. This might be a novella."
By the fourth evening, I realized I had a novel, and by the sixth I realized it might be two or three. By now, I'm fairly certain that it's a series. The one thing I knew I couldn't write was a novel, but within a month, I had finished the first draft.
I was amazed.... I'd done it!
I did a lot of research, rewrote and edited. Even though I was writing for a character who supposedly lived hundreds of years before I was born, I wanted it to ring true. But the characters and dragons all sprang from the dream before any research was done. These dragons are not quite like any I've read about (and I've read about lots of dragons). The characters all include bits of people I know - whether in real life or in my favorite books...And now, three years later, we're on the brink of publishing.