Welcome to the Campfire of Dreams

Thank you so much for following the breadcrumbs and clicking whichever magical links which brought you here.

I’d love to know your name because, after all, what is a blog like this for if it isn’t for growing friendships (even virtual ones) as we sit around this make-believe campfire and talk about the things that light up our days and bring a little smile to our hearts. In the absence of knowing names at this point, I hope it’s ok if I imagine that you love reading, maybe even writing a little and that you have some dreams hiding somewhere inside you that you would love to bring out into the world.

Just to introduce myself and this blog. My name is Alan and as you’ll discover I have been on a fun journey writing The Jar of Dreams ever since it arrived in a dream, halfway up a mountain in the Himalayas. I had never planned to become an author, but after the dream, writing has become one of the biggest joys in my life. Every morning, I can’t wait to wake up at sunrise and step into the lands in The Jar of Dreams (now a series of books) and see who and what is waiting for me there.

In this blog, I want to share this ten-year (plus) journey with you in the hope that it waters a little seed of inspiration in you, to follow whatever dream it is that you have. Because, one of the biggest lessons that The Jar of Dreams has taught me is that life is better when we carve out time each day, or week, to give our best shot at bringing a little dream we have to life.

My plan as we start out, is to try and bring to life the lessons that I have learned, especially the things that have helped me cultivate a ‘writer’s mindset’. I’ll also introduce you to the kind people in the publishing world who saw something special in my first, half-baked manuscript, so they can help give you a glimpse of what happens behind the scenes when publishing a book. And of course, without creating any spoilers, I’ll give you a sneak peek of the characters and mystical places that make up The Jar of Dreams and the series.

Meet many of the kind people who have helped to create The Jar of Dreams.

Like all plans (and like the thousands of pages that didn’t make the final manuscript), I am happy to change it up, because this blog is written for you, so if there are any topics you would like more (or less) of, or if you have any particular questions, please let me know.

Thanks so much again for joining me on this dream journey. I hope you enjoy it, please feel free to invite anyone you know who might like to join us, and please keep watering your dreams as you go about the rest of your day.

Pelago (I’ll explain the language of Xhadur later ;))

Alan

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The Dream from the Himalayas that became a Book

I sat bolt upright. Blackness, nothing but a deep impenetrable blackness surrounded me.

Somewhere close a deep crack filled the icy air, as the once-great glacier of Namik carved her way downwards from the hunchbacked peaks above, groaning as she went.

My dream flickered in front of me, replaying like a movie on the black canvas of the night. I scrambled for my pencil and paper and began to scribble under the beam of my head torch, hoping not to wake Gauri, my great friend and guide.

A young boy cowered under a dark djinn. His dreams, sparkling like strands of blue light floated in front of him. They had been ripped from him and were dangling from the calloused claws of the hideous, hooded spirit that stood over him.

The experience was so real. I felt as if I was experiencing the journey of the young boy, while at the same time, floating above the scenes as my dream rolled on.

The boy cowered, powerless to stop the evil djinn as it dropped his dreams into a jar and roared ‘Dream no more boy. The world no longer needs your foolish dreams. It is time for you to grow up and be like everyone else.’ The djinn stared deep into the boy’s eyes and then turned and disappeared.

Ashoo, as I first named the boy (after a great friend), wandered the back streets, desperately searching for the shadow-like creature and his dreams. Inside him, a dark weight took root, beginning to strangle his child-like spirit. In the days and weeks that followed, the weight grew and a darkness closed around him.

Somewhere in the pit of his pain, the young boy found a light. In the light, Ashoo found hope and in the hope, he found the courage to leave the world he knew, and his family that he loved, and step into the unknown, step out with no certainty of return, in search of the dark spirit and his dreams.

I scribbled furiously, trying to capture the textures and details of the adventure that followed. An adventure that would take Ashoo beyond the world that he knew, changing his life and changing mine forever.

Tiredness soon gripped me again and I drifted off to sleep, unaware of the journey that I had just stepped out on. A journey that for the last twenty years has given me so much joy. Every morning since (or at least close to that) I wake with the sunrise and step into the worlds of The Jar of Dreams and write what I experience.

Writing has become a daily dream for me and I hope that, as we get close to publishing, this story helps you, or someone that you love, to water the seeds of a dream that lives inside of you.