The Fiction of Dreams, A Book Review

Fiction and dreams are closely related. “The dream’s essence lies in its storytelling capacity. Dreams are autobiographical fictions that tell the story of the dreamer’s life history, her insertion in transgenerational family themes, and her ethnic and cultural identity”. That is how Otto Rheinschmiedt hooks me in the first paragraph of this book.

Oh yes, I agree with him and in my mind several cool and cruel dream stories of mine resurface…

There is the nightmare story I once told you about, there have been a couple of mutual dreams I had, that turned into what could have been a novel, and several childhood dreams that still amaze me because they seem to have been the seed of what turned out to be my life.

A Mindfunda Book review of The Fiction Of Dreams, Dreams Literature and Writing
By Otto M. Rheinschmiedt
Karnac, 2017, Hardcover $39.30 Kindle $25.61 ISBN-10: 1782204202 ISBN-13: 978-1-78220-420-6
Reviewed by Drs. Susanne van Doorn



The Fiction of Dreams
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Fiction of Dreams: Design of Creation

“Dreams are governed by the universal sign of creation. They follow the principles of creation inherent in the strategies of genius, quantum physics, and chaos theory. Dreams cannot be understood completely if one applies a singular model of the mind” (page XV).

I have written about it in The Multiverse, a Dream Come True?.

And even though most of us dream lovers are charmed with the new scientific break throughs in cosmology, we still are not able to create a new way of working with dreams out of it.

That is not the intention of this book. But Otto still proposes a theory to explain human dreams and behaviour. His model has seven pillars.


And even though it’s quite complicated, I like the fact that Otto offers a model. In his beautiful, thorough book, you need a structure to hang on to.

This book made me think back at another interesting book that explored the theme of fiction and dreams. Philosophy, Dreaming and the Literary Imagination by Michaela Schrage – Fruh.

This book embraces a more philosophical standpoint, while The Fiction of Dreams can be read as a creative case study that aims to make a quilt of at least 7 pieces to keep you warm at night.


Fiction of Dreams: Who is the Dream Creator?

In his book Otto promotes a dream facilitator that is bigger than the individual mind. I’d have to fully agree with him on that issue.

He describes how Charles Steward in his book Dreaming and Historical Consciousness in Island Greece has shown how dreaming was liked to economical circumstances and group feeling.

He gently hints, no almost seduces you, to open up to the idea that each individual dream is part of a universal dream quilt. And that the intent of such a quilt is to keep us warm and safe.

Fiction of Dreams: Freud

Otto’s admiration for Freud is a red theme across the chapters of the book. He honestly describes several cases he has had as a psychotherapist were ladies were as offended by Freud’s assumption of penis envy as I always have been.

But I must confess, the more I found out about Freud, the more I began to admire his mythological thinking mind.

In this book, Freud is honoured because of his prize winning poetry (he got the 1930 Goethe prize for literature.

fiction of dreams


And the book focusses on how dreams are stories. The Fiction of dreams. And he book is filled with incredible examples of precognitive dreams.

There is a dream about a lady who found out because of her dreams that she had jewish ancestry.

There is a dream about a son who grew up without his biological father. When he tracked him down, he recognized how several dream had hinted on his father’s profession and his half brothers and sisters.


This book is written with care, well researched and easy to read;
The cases used are very interesting;
The mythological background and the chapter about deities and Asclepius increases the yummy factor of this book.


The way the 7 human drives are abbreviated in F + H + L + B + P + S was a bit confusing to me;
There are many (mostly male) writers discussed, who have written from dreams or in a dream-like state. But I could not find a theme, or strain of thought that connected them.


Enthusiastic and want to buy this book? The Fiction Of Dreams, Dreams Literature and Writing

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