The Sorrows of Young Werewolf (eyeteeth) wrote,
The Sorrows of Young Werewolf

Dreaming of bones

In college, my forensic anthropology professor encouraged us all to spend as much time as possible in the lab, studying minutiae of the bones in a box there. You could literally have spent all your free time in the bone lab doing this, because there are probably thousands of documented minutiae in the bones of a human skeleton, fossae and protuberances and ridges and sulci and so on that tell you things about the person who used to occupy and be occupied by the skeleton in question. These aren't always useful things, but there they are. For example: with your thumbs, feel the tops of your eye sockets, as far inside as you can get without discomfort. Is there a notch there? That's your supraorbital notch, nerves and stuff run through it. Is there not a notch there? Don't worry, you've still got the same nerves and stuff, but yours run through a supraorbital foramen, a foramen being a hole -- this is the same structure, only closed instead of open. And now you know something about your skeleton you didn't know before, as we all suddenly did on the day in class when Dr. Bennett told us this and we all stuck our thumbs in our eyes. And the skeleton's full of stuff like that, little identifying markers, and people obsess over them because you never know when there's going to be a plane crash and you're going to have to try to identify people, or at least try to guess what age and race and sex they used to be, with only a thumb bone and the head of a femur to go on. So after we'd been at this for a while, Dr. Bennett asked, "Anyone been dreaming of bones?" Some hands went up. Mine was not among them, but then I hadn't been spending as much time in the bone lab as I should have been.

It's funny, given that I think about my writing constantly, that I almost never dream about anything to do with it. But maybe that's precisely why I don't: my brain spends so much time with my writing when I'm awake that it doesn't need to spend any time with it when I'm asleep. Recently I have been dreaming of editing, though. Occasionally I have the one where I send the page proofs back and find errors afterward because somehow I still have the page proofs, but it's too late to fix them? And then I had this one about all the porn in CMoS, which kind of makes sense, because CMoS really is ridiculously large. (It was specifically, for whatever reason, Team Fortress 2 porn.) My favorite editing dream is still the one where I corrected someone's spelling of Dahmer (there is an h in it). I can tell it strains my subconscious sometimes to give me these dreams, because as far as I can tell it's true what they say about its being impossible to read in dreams. But some days I don't do anything but read, and that's all my subconscious has to work with, so it's like the improv exercise where you pretend to be speaking a foreign language you don't actually know how to speak. In my dream I'll fix a sentence but THE SENTENCE WILL THEN BE WRONG IN A DIFFERENT WAY! Doubtless my subconscious would prefer I had become a forensic anthropologist, so it could give me dreams about bones instead.
Tags: bones, dreams, stix, writing
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