Today I read:
Tolstoy showed it was possible to give a character a dream that strikes the reader as plausible, convincing, important enough to pay attention to, without being heavy-handedly symbolic or portentous. Or boring. What’s harder to recreate on the page is anything remotely resembling the experience of actually dreaming, with all the structural and narrative complexities involved, the leaps, contradictions, and improbable elements. Maybe that was my seventh-grade teacher’s problem: She’d read too many middle-school accounts of dreams that were nothing like dreams.
— Francine Prose, “Chasing the White Rabbit“
See also: “On the Stovetop of Sleep” by Nicholson Baker (and others in the NY Review of Books series on dreams)