Friday, February 20, 2015

The Meaning of Dreams

Stories are metaphors. From the moment they arise from the author's deepest dreams, to the second they enter the reader's mind, a story is a form of telepathic communication that conveys images, ideas, and philosophy in a way that no other medium can.

The message may become garbled. The reader may experience something other than what the author intended. And that's okay. Because the reader can only take in what she is ready to take. She can only comprehend what she is prepared for, and for what every unique moment in her individualized life experience has set her up for. She may feel completely different feelings than I've sent to her, but if she feels something that is personally meaningful to her, then the cycle of communication is complete.

Fantasy, science fiction, and horror, otherwise known as "speculative fiction", is the most ripe for conveying messages on this wavelength of metaphor. Because anything can happen, because fantastic worlds are built with rules that differ from our own, those rules can better represent the wispy, intangible form of language our subconscious minds speak: the language of symbols.

The Legends and Dreams story bundle contains eight such stories. What will pop into your subconscious when you experience a world in which entertainment conveys not only light and sound, but also touch and sensation, as it does in Tonya Macalina's Faces in the Water?

What speaks to you about a human boy capable of turning into an aquatic being of myth, like in Roslyn MacFarland's See No Sea?

What is most intriguing about a society of masked political maneuvering and courtly subterfuge as depicted in E.M. Prazeman's Masks?

Where will your mind take you when you read about a girl born with a spectral limb in Ripley Paton's Ghost Hand?

Or more down to earth, will you connect to Courtney Pierce's protagonist, who hunts for a killer and deals with her mother's death, in Stitches?

Perhaps a tale of traveling to magical realities will speak to your psyche, like Pamela Bainbridge-Cowan's The Butterfly.

If that doesn't call to your inner Jungian archetypes, there's another world you can travel to via the two characters in Crystal Doors: A steampunk world of science and magic by bestsellers Kevin J. Anderson and Rebecca Moesta.

As the author of Emerald City Dreamer, also included in the bundle, I can speak to the metaphors I hoped to convey. But perhaps you will have a different take away. I wanted to show the struggle between reason and hope, between cold logic and creativity. It is dedicated to those of us who have worked corporate day jobs, but wanted more; those of us with dreams bouncing eagerly (or scratching menacingly) just beneath the surface, struggling against reality to finally escape.

So I wrote about faeries living in the modern world, and about the two women who desperately want to kill them.

Is this a sales pitch? Yes, it is. I want you to experience the Legends and Dreams bundle because I believe in the power of books and in the majesty of the dying art of reading. Catch a dream. Experience a legend. All eight books are available in one bundle, and you can simply name your price.

What's even better is that all but one of these authors are women. And all but one book has female protagonists. #WeNeedDiverseBooks? Yes.

Legends and Dreams story bundle at

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