Recall a vivid or perhaps reoccurring dream. Write one page, making the dream as believable as possible. Don’t mention they are dreams. Allow yourself to let go and create a drifting stream of consciousness account. Leave all your notions of punctuation, proper paragraph structure, and logical jumps behind (which if you’re anything like me shouldn’t be hard). This gives you practice for writing surreal scenes and images in a story.
I stand at the window in my childhood bedroom, no lights on. There are no curtains. The room is dark and feels eery but not scary. Looking through the window, down to the dark street, I see a small house in the center of the court. A cute, white house sits on a round circle of bright, healthy green grass. The house looks like a doll house. It is perfect. The black roof is pitched perfectly, covered with shingles that sparkle. Black shutters hang at the windows, and the front door is black or red, I’m not sure which. The house is small and two stories, big enough for a living room, kitchen, dining room, bathroom and bedroom. There are no flowers or landscaping, but the green grass is strangely bright and healthy. There is no driveway and no sidewalk or walkway to the front door. There is a tiny concrete porch, big enough to stand on but not big enough for a chair. A spotlight shines down on the house from above. I don’t see any light source anywhere, but from somewhere, a light shines down on the house and makes everything lit up and surreal. I can’t see any of the familiar houses that sit around the circumference of the court I live on, as the light is only on the house in the center. I have no feeling of fear and no desire to go in the house. I just look at it from my bedroom window. There are no signs of life. No one waves from a window, no red wagon is parked on the grass. The house looks uninhabited. I am not afraid and I wouldn’t say I feel any longing for the house. I am content to stand there looking at it and pulling on the curtain where I didn’t think one hung.
I am standing between a bed and a wall in what I don’t recognize as but know is my aunt’s bedroom. The room is dark, paneled in wood, heavy from floor to ceiling. A little light comes in under a drawn blind. There is a patchwork quilt on the heavy, outdated wooden bead. The patches are small, maybe 4 inches wide, cut in octagons, patterns in primary colors, reds, blues, greens. I’m hiding. The door opens, and a lifesize cornsilk doll enters. She’s tall as a grownup. She has no face because she’s a cornsilk doll. Her face is flat and motionless and expressionless. The husk has thin, vertical creases, like a corduroy, but dry and brittle. She wears a red and white kerchief on her head, and an apron hangs around her waist. She has husks twisted into thin, completely pointless arms. She is at least five foot three, and her arms are thinner than a pencil and there are no hands attached, but she’s reacing out these pointless arms to me. I’m not afraid of her because she’s not mean. She isn’t going to hurt me, but her empty face is so creepy and unsettling. She doesn’t have feet, just a skirt made from husks that stops at the ground. She’s sliding towards me, and I don’t know what she wants. I realize that my mom is standing with me beside the bed.