Last night, before I drifted off to sleep I said a brief prayer. I asked for Grandma Sarah to visit me – or send me a sign in a dream; she did.
I dreamed I was waiting a table – the bill totaled $25. The guests left me $17. When I woke I remembered two things: I lost money and the number 17. I immediately began to decode the message (using Dream Moods, a site I’ve used/trusted for nearly a decade. As it turns out, message received).
The number 17 represented “soul” and losing money meant that in my waking life I’ve lost ambition, self-esteem, and am experiencing unhappiness. Recognizing all three “symptoms,” and their direct impact on my “soul,” I knew I needed to spend today enjoying some my passions, simple pleasures in life really. I went for a hike (something I’d been meaning to do all summer), took pictures (you can see right below – then continue reading), and went to spend time with a project I’ve been working on for the last six years(!).
In 2007, following the death of my Grandma Sarah, I began working on a book titled The Adventures of Coffee M. Monkey and Sarah. The story began as a children’s story/book. In 2010, after having completed four books in my “Seussian” series, I decided I wanted to scrap it all and adapt a novel. A year later, dissatisfied with the direction of the book, I scrapped that too – and started over (again). Since then, I’ve slowly worked toward the novel’s (known) conclusion.
Today I was in search of inspiration, or an immediate “reawakening.” Along the way, I was surrounded by familiar, loving voices (Mom, Aunt Charlene), saw familiar faces and made new acquaintances. I spent time pouring through the first two chapters of The Adventures… making notes and asking questions – all in an effort to make this the best story I can possibly create.
I said once “Coffee M. Monkey is my window to the world.” Today, that seemed true – it seemed real. My goal for the story has always been for it to be an American classic, for it to embody the essence of the people, and the woman, who’ve inspired the story, and for it to be the basis of an animated feature film – all things I love.
Then I came across a quote – and thought “this must be an extension from my dream into my waking life” (a key theme in my novel). The quote contained wisdom my Grandma Sarah would have possessed and offered to me:
… I feel ambitious. I feel like my soul has been reinvigorated – and so I’ve worked. To illustrate this, I quickly created a “first look” into one of the scenes from Chapter One (“The Hills of Christmas”) – one of my favorite ideas from the entire novel. What it means shall remain a mystery, but now you can see, I have been inspired – and now The Adventures… resume.