Guest blogger: Sue Moorcroft
I began Dream a Little Dream with no idea of the fascinating world I was about to broach. After all, we use the word ‘dream’ to describe either sleeping dreams or our desires, and both drive my book. So that’s all there is to it, right?
Dreams are affected by moods, so we get anxiety dreams, the kind where you find yourself in your underwear at an important meeting, and comfort dreams, when we dream our loved ones have come back to tell us that heaven’s heaven. And we have nightmares, when we’re panicking as the monster gets closer or jolt awake just as a groping hand fastens around ours— !
And some dreams are … oohhhhh, yeahhhhh … those kind. (If you’ve never had one of ‘those kind’ of dreams then I suggest you have a strong word with your unconscious mind and demand some.)
My hero in Dream a Little Dream, Dominic Christy, has the rare sleep disorder narcolepsy, so his dreams are exceptionally vivid—good and bad—about aircraft, about his ex and about Liza (which is where the oohhhhh yeahhhhh dreams come in). They’re weird only occasionally wonderful and he sometimes struggles to recognise them for what they are—unreality.
Researching narcolepsy was a challenge and I eventually appealed on the message board of Narcolepsy UK, saying that my character was called Dominic, was in his thirties and had narcolepsy. And I received a reply: ‘My name’s Dominic, I’m in my thirties and I have narcolepsy …’ Incredible! I’d already written more than half the book so Dominic Christy was clear in my mind and I’ve never mixed the two Dominics up, but the real Dominic was able to tell me all the things I didn’t yet know about Dominic Christy—which was a dream come true for me. (After I’d bugged the life out of him for a year or so he would have had every reason to view me as a nightmare, but he’s been kind and polite enough to say he’s actually enjoyed it. You can read an interview with him about the process here.
Easier to understand than sleeping dreams are the ‘desires’ kind of dreams, and Dominic Christy needs a new one.
He had to leave his dream job as an air traffic controller. It’s off his radar (ouch, feeble joke alert) once narcolepsy hits. Sudden onset of narcolepsy—rare but it does happen—triggers a lot of changes for him. No job, the girlfriend has become ex and he’s living with his cousin Miranda. The poor guy gets himself a new dream, to create an adventure and challenge centre.
And in walks Liza …
If you’ve read All That Mullarkey you’ll already know Liza as Cleo’s naughty little sister. Way too much fun to leave forever in secondary characterland, she got her own book. I’d left her safely loved up with Adam but being in a relationship turned out not to be her thing and by the time Dream a Little Dream begins she’s had a few dramas. These leave her prickly and ungracious but she’s also hot and funny and Dominic—well, he thinks she’s a walking dream.
Liza’s not in the market for a new man, however hot and funny. She’s been scared off relationships and she’s fighting for her own dream—to take over the holistic centre where she works as a reflexologist—which would be easier if she had more money and less opposition.
Because they wake up to the realisation that if Dominic gets his dream then Liza doesn’t get hers and if Liza does, Dominic doesn’t.
And what about you? Did you dream a dream that came true? Or have you been caught in a nightmare …?
Sue Moorcroft writes novels of dauntless heroines and dream heroes, along with short stories, serials, articles, ‘how to’ and courses. Follow @suemoorcroft on Twitter or befriend sue.moorcroft.3 on Facebook.