A Dream I Had

Andrew Anglin

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The quality is defiantly there you just need to figure out how to scale it up to a full length story. It reads just like a high quality but extremely short condensed epic novel. It makes me want to start reading fiction again its that good. Even if you can't rework it to scale it up you should write a similar story with the same themes.
Well, it is condensed and also not even to the midpoint of the story, as I would envision it based on limited source material from the dream.

If we look at the classic structure chart:

What-is-The-Three-Act-Structure-Plot-Diagram.jpeg

The ending of the OP was between the first and second obstacles of act two, before the midpoint twist. Having now read this twice, I have a skeletal outline.

I would remove the surrealism from everything other than the setting, firstly. As both an aesthetic and a practical matter, the surrealist setting should contrast with rational actors and consistent in story rules. Various types of fantastical technologies contrasted with convoluted ideologies and inexplicable governmental systems are a part of the setting, and should be consistently surreal. However, surrealist character and event logic as a plot device is sloppy, especially if the characters ever take rational actions. "Rational actions" does not mean "acting rationally," but simply responding in a way that makes sense under their personal conditions. I think that mostly happens in the OP, but there are also a lot of things that appear to be happening for no reason, but this is largely due to the story being incomplete. A consistent pattern of deus ex machina which the narrative structure acknowledges as part of the reality of the setting itself is funny and intriguing enough that I don't think it is sloppy, necessarily.

Loving this writing workshop, by the way. I always used to feel that if I ever even had a discussion with someone about a work in progress, it was doomed. I feel much differently about this, and believe that it could well transform from a bizarre cinematic dream sequence that alludes to much larger themes into a structured examination of the themes. The characters of the irate and controlling retard, and the younger version of myself need to go through actual development before they begin tranformative arcs.
 

Andrew Anglin

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Also, first and foremost, the name of the game needs to be changed:

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JR_Rustler_III

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I wish I could just write like this every day.
Well, isn't that what you were doing in your alternative-timeline dreamscape? That didn't seem to be working out so great.

I have post-apocalyptic dreams all the time, but they aren't nearly as interesting as yours. They seem to come in maybe a half-dozen different flavors, that range from wandering through completely bombed-out cityscapes, to living with millions of people in some kind of massive skyscraper complex not entirely dissimilar to the one you described. The total atomization of humanity is the salient feature of all of these dreams/nightmares.
 

JR_Rustler_III

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The Gulf Arabs have already proved they can run high tech societies. Please see Dubai.
Dubai is the v0.1 working prototype of the Davos/WEF/Transhumanist binary class system of the future: a tiny, super-wealthy elite supported by a giant slave class of imported jungle gooks and brown people.
 

Dr Livci

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me neither. I can only remember fragments. Not every dream is the same, yet, one thing stands out. The 'atmosphere' is almost always the same. Public spaces are not lit. Inside rooms, everything is kinda dark, except for sunlight through windows. No artificial light and everything seems dusty. And the people are always kind of dirty or grimy. Like being in a re-enactment of the dark ages. And it always involves some kind of obscure nonsensical scenario. Dealing with a marketplace or normal daily drama things. Always with no lights, and grimy people. Weird stuff.
The only time I’ve ever had really vivid dreams that I can remember to this day is when I’ve been going through especially awful periods in life. When content I almost never remember my dreams and I think that’s how it should be as a rule. Imo opinion there’s something to the theory that in the dream state that the barriers between spiritual places and the material are thinner and most the entities/things in the spiritual places that actually want to influence/interact with you aren’t your friends.

The dreams I can remember were also devoid of light for the most part, everything/everyone was kind of grimy and haggard looking, and one of the weird details was that in the dreams I could understand what people were saying but when I woke up the stuff I could remember was all cryptic gibberish. Like in the dreams I understood the meanings of the gibberish but when I was awake and thinking of something that was said to me I would be like β€œwait wtf was that supposed mean again”?

Like always I think the dream sequences Dostoevsky wrote were great. They were either totally surreal and traumatic or completely bizarre and nonsensical. Like when Ivan Karazamov is dreaming about talking to Satan and Satan is actually a really boring guy with nothing interesting to say and this quality of Satan just drives Ivan further insane. Than the reader is left wondering if it was all simply Ivan’s Fever dream, is Satan actually kind of a boring disappointment in reality or was he intentionally trying to drive Ivan further into insanity with his cryptic yet totally uninteresting dialogue.

That’s something that marks a good writer imo, having the barriers between the spiritual and material planes intentionally ambiguous.
 

TimeBandit

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There's a war on tribalism.



 

anti-barabas-ite

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If you don't dream your dead.
 

FATEWEAVER88

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The story was that there was a secret game on a secret floor called β€œOne Life.” It was an arcade game, and when the player lost, he was psychologically manipulated by the game into killing himself. The story was that the game picked your brain through a series of decision-making exercises, and if you played it long enough, you would always lose, and it would know so much about you that it could easily convince you to kill yourself. There was a dark temptation in the game, as through playing it, it revealed to you things about yourself you did not know. You could go deeper and deeper into it, and find deeper and deeper understanding of yourself through its constantly changing decision-generation system, which was designed to lay bare your soul.
-Video games and other reality-creation technology as symbolic of the knowledge of good and evil, or possibly the end game of the knowledge of good and evil
I really like these themes. I would take it a step further with actually gaming with sentient AI in virtual worlds and neural links were it would be possible to become so immersed in the ultra realistic games and virtual worlds that you become trapped in virtual worlds on quests that have real life consequences for losing, a darker side to gaming if you will, something like the movie Saw (wanna play a game?) only it will be played in the virtual world. I think that sentient AI will eventually be integrated into video games as well as blockchain, neural links, ect... so these type of themes are very realistic.
 

DaveA

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What is the minimum cost, I wonder, to produce three hours of Netflix content? It doesn't have to be good; it just has to fill the time slot, and whoever watches it will only remember tiny fragments or nothing at all.

I ask because my brain does this almost every night.
 

EddieBrock

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When you have a recurring series of dreams that progress from the point you leave them each night and never repeat and inexorably lead to you freeing some part of your mind or opening a doorway, you might get your own lucid dream superpowers, btw.
 

Paul Harrell

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Neat short story. Certainly better than most of the crap they have us read in school.
 

Little Shitpost Buddha

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If you get any more postmodern than this you'll start shitting robot vacuum cleaners.

PS. Writing novels is hard. I wrote a novel, and after two years of work I figured out I don't really like it. Can't even figure out how many hours I put into it.
 
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Little Shitpost Buddha

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Regarding the symbolism of the Tower of Babel:

There is another interpretation - that the story symbolises the confounding of the representation with the essence. When God commanded people to reach to the level of the divine, he did not mean literary, by 'climbing to heaven' (i.e. subduing the word of matter), but rather, it is to be an inner transformation. This is an important concept among the esoteric schools of all sorts.

Speaking of which, your story initially left the impression of a 'theater of the absurd' hypothetical portrayal of a world in which the 'make-believe' is perpetually consolidating, that is to say, until I read your postscript.

I think a good achievement would be to obtain this same pervading mood of artificiality and dissatisfaction, but without the futuristic setting (sci-fi is a genre for slackers). It is interesting to note that, if you want to look at it that way, this is basically one of those 'eternal' themes. Even the people of antiquity struggled with the feeling of living in an 'artificial' world.
 

glaucon

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Like always I think the dream sequences Dostoevsky wrote were great. They were either totally surreal and traumatic or completely bizarre and nonsensical. Like when Ivan Karazamov is dreaming about talking to Satan and Satan is actually a really boring guy with nothing interesting to say and this quality of Satan just drives Ivan further insane. Than the reader is left wondering if it was all simply Ivan’s Fever dream, is Satan actually kind of a boring disappointment in reality or was he intentionally trying to drive Ivan further into insanity with his cryptic yet totally uninteresting dialogue.
One thing Dostoevsky has going against him is Jordan Peterson promotes him. I don't want to read anything that guy promotes. I wouldn't have touched Dostoevsky if Anglin didn't recommend him.

Nevertheless I'm trying to read him, despite his hatred for Catholics.
 
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Pepelino

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Nick was talking about this 100 mile long city a few days ago. It sounds like something out of elysium. Of course with shitskins running the place it will never last. Maybe they can get some white engineers to build it but it will be torn down in a century or 2 because of incompetent Arabs running the place. The only way a society like this could get built and maintained would be by Japanese or Europeans. Sounds completely Godless and horrifying anyway and something Bill Gates would want built. Saudis have so much oil money to just build whatever with. The top Brazilian Jiu Jitsu tournaments happen in Saudi Arabia now, because some rich oil Saudi funds the tournament. And now their is an alternative golf league I believe that was funded by the Saudis that has become very controversial that many top golf players are going to.

But speaking of dreams, I never have detailed dreams like that. Not in my whole life really. Nowadays I hardly ever dream.
I find that turning off any wifi/bluetooth/4g signal receptor/emitter makes a difference between whether or not I dream. Basically, putting all mobile devices on airplane mode and disconnecting the router before I go to sleep increases the likelihood of dreaming and remembering it. Another thing that makes a difference is watching a movie just before sleeping. If I watch around 30 minutes of it, especially black and white ones, I normally (although not always but it depends on the level of attention I'm paying to the movie as well as how sleepy I am while watching) have little to no dreaming (that I can recollect).
 
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