Dream projects. This strikes me a little like the “book of the heart” discussion that erupts periodically with people trying to define what it means. And really that’s the creamy caramel center of a writing life; you have to define it for yourself, and redefine it as things change. What is success to you? What is a dream project to you? Are you allowed to have more than one dream and to change your mind?
I’ve had a lot of writing dreams and a lot of them have come true. First I dreamed of walking into a bookstore and seeing MY book for sale. That happened. And then there were more books, and books in libraries that anybody could borrow. There was the dream of seeing my work translated into foreign languages and hearing from readers around the world. That dream came true and is still coming true as more editions happen and more readers tell me that they’ve discovered me in Russia, in Thailand, in Germany. The dream of writing for more than one publisher, of qualifying for membership in SFWA, I could go on and on. Everything I’ve written has been a dream project in its own way.
I still have dreams. Dreams of finishing projects that time, energy and other commitments have pushed off. Dreams of more books, new books. New definitions of success. Just this month I came up with an entirely new idea for a whole series of projects that represent an enormous dream, not necessarily because it would be award-worthy or wildly lucrative or a great shot at bestsellerdom, but because it would further a passion of mine.
There is plenty of room for all kinds of dreams in the writing life, in every life. “We are such things as dreams are made of”, so why not dream a lot? Nobody gets to judge your dreams but you.