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Help me identify a dream world Sci-fi story
February 10, 2012 10:00 AM   Subscribe

Please help me identify a Science Fiction short story about a dream world taking over from the waking world. It was very Philip.K.Dick ish.

Please help me identify a Science Fiction short story which about a dream world taking over from the waking world. It was very Philip.K.Dick ish, but having bought all his short story anthologies, i dont think it was him. It was quite short. In the dreams the main character did odd things like have his fingers cut off by his family, but it didn't hurt. It turns out to be a shared dream, but ultimately people get together to beat it. I remembered it after watching Inception and thought how much better it, the story, was!
posted by expatbore to Media & Arts (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
Reverse help: this is NOT LeGuin's The Lathe of Heaven.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:08 AM on February 10, 2012


No, you're right, it isn't ! But I will check that out it looks good.
posted by expatbore at 10:15 AM on February 10, 2012


Maybe Catherynne Valente's Palimpsest? One character gets a finger cut off in the dream world, and when she wakes up, there's no pain or blood, but the finger is still gone. In the end, the characters who share the dream don't exactly beat the dream world, but they sort of come to an accomodation.

That's a novel, but it was originally a short story. The link is down now but maybe it'll work for you later.
posted by moonmilk at 10:33 AM on February 10, 2012


I came here to say Lathe of Heaven but now I want to read this book!
posted by duvatney at 10:37 AM on February 10, 2012


Thanks for the Palimpset suggestion, but I'm afraid that's not it. It is much older, I probably read it about ten years ago, and it may well have been in a 60s or 70s anthology. I vaguely remember another feature which is that in the dream world the roads are blocked by great big rock like aliens creatures, which become more numerous as the story progresses.
posted by expatbore at 11:28 AM on February 10, 2012


It is probably not Ron Hubbard's interesting Slaves of Sleep, but you might want to check it out.
posted by Eltulipan at 2:26 PM on February 10, 2012


It sounds not dissimilar to a number of themes that Christopher Priest has visited a few times, but mostly in novels rather than short stories. Do you remember when you read it?
posted by Hogshead at 3:01 PM on February 10, 2012


Thanks for the Christopher Priest suggestion - I've never read him but I'll look through some of his short stories and see if I can find it. And his novels look rather good!
posted by expatbore at 3:48 AM on February 11, 2012


I don't think this is Chris Priest, but I can only second the recommendation if you like this sort of thing. You should seek out "A Dream of Wessex" in particular (which, strangely and inappropriately, was renamed "The Perfect Lover" in the US.)
posted by Decani at 11:59 AM on February 11, 2012


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