Interview with Dr. Robert C. WorstellMidwest Journal: Welcome to today's Interview with another rural author. Our guest today runs a working farm with daily chores, but has meanwhile managed to get degrees in computer science, metaphysics, and comparative religion. He also is a prolific author and has recently released a fiction work - this one used to explore the questions of dreams and their effects on our daily lives. We'll be back to talk with him right after this...
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MJ: Hello again, and thanks for tuning in. Our guest today is Dr. Robert C. Worstell, who has recently released his novel, "The Dreamer Dreamed" - soon to be in Amazon and major booksellers as well as Apple's iBookstore. But I think you'll find as I did, that this is no normal adventure page-turner. Rather, it gets you to think.
Dr. Worstell, how did you come up with the idea for this novel?
Dr. Worstell: Well, first - thanks for having me on your show. I'd been running into the idea of exploring the world of dreams for some time, as they have a direct impact on our lives throughout the day - not just when we sleep. But I had also run out of books to write in a non-fiction line. There were too many really good books out there which dissected the subject of dreams way beyond anything I needed to write.
And as I had recently wrapped up my last self-help non-fiction book, "Freedom Is", I then ran across National Novel Writing Month and decided that this was the genre I needed to use in order to explore the concept.
MJ: The use of fiction as a means of exploring concepts that even science won't touch isn't particularly new...
Worstell: No, any Star Trek fan will recognise that many different ideas are explored in non-traditional venues. For instance, they are known for the first inter-racial kiss. And of course, "High Noon" took on the government and politics in a Western venue. Shakespeare is still being studied for what he covered in highly fantastic "Midsummer Night's Dreams", among others. All of thess are fiction.
MJ: Now you take this up right off that dreams are held by certain ancient philosophies to be a metaphor for life.
Worstell: The earliest I've taken this back is to the Polynesian verbal traditions, which are estimated to be older than any other surviving philosophy on this planet. Some of their kahuna shamans hold that life is simply a dream - and actually apply to life, not just some nuisance we have at night. More that our dreams control our lives - if we let them. As well, you'll find that you actually dream all day long on different levels, that you can move between these dreams and the "real world".
Obviously, this is ripe for exploration, since it would turn what we generally consider as immutable rules or laws in our physical universe upside down.
MJ: In addition to the kahuna character, you also bring in a lot of notable philsophers, including the Chinese Lao Tse - but is there a reason you bring them together in a library setting?
Worstell: That was inspired by Napoleon Hill's "Invisible Counsellors" out of his "Think and Grow Rich". He used this to help him improve his own character. But the library was because the whole point was to have a scene where the main character could be influenced by the sum total of knowledge available. Some say this is the Akashic records, but if you look at various philosophies, you'll find the idea of all being connected - so we also then have individually access to all the collective knowledge available. And that's easily shown by a lot of different techniques. In fact, that's how I write books - just let it out. Anyone could, actually.
MJ: So you teach people how to do this?
Worstell: No, I covered it in earlier books - and it only needs touching on here. And that's how this book runs. It just gives all sorts of hints at broader subjects. But the point is entertainment, which is far more needed than more stodgy and dogmatic texts.
MJ: But you've written and published dozens of such texts...
Worstell: And I hope you don't think they are all like that - but yes, I was done with that line of work. I'd studied all sorts of books and brought the best back to life, plus added my own distillation and commentary to these - simplifying them all as best I could into bite-sized pieces. But once you've been this route, then the amount of duplication out there becomes obvious. There are literally tons and tons of different approaches to reach the same or similar results.
The point is that there needs to be a broader approach here if you want to attract a lot of people into this study. But the underlying basic is that most of the people are here to be entertained. So the approach is simply to combine the two and so do the most good for this world around us.
MJ: And this is what drives you to write?
Worstell: I don't really know what "drives me" to write. It's really more that I relax and do whatever comes next. Writing is just another reflex to me like breathing. But its more that I take some time with it or not - like exercising. But that is all beyond the point of this book. Or maybe not.
The key point is that people have fun reading the book and maybe get something out of it. Other than that, there's no real reason to write, is there? I mean, Art isn't something you do for your own personal benefit - it's a way to help improve the quality of life of the world around them.
Sure, I've been given a gift - but it's not what you have, but what you do with them that counts.
MJ: So what's next on the horizon?
Worstell: Right now, I'm going right into cartooning after I complete some marketing jobs - like pushing this book out the door. And I just have to thank you for having me on this show. Hope I've done your audience good with all this.
MJ: Well, it's our thanks to you for coming on our show. Now how can people get your books?
Worstell: They're available on Amazon and most major booksellers. There's even a version on iBookstore for your various readers like the Kindle. You can always go to my Lulu storefront.
MJ: And this has been the Midwest Journal bringing you Dr. Robert C. Worstell and his new book, "The Dreamer Dreamed." See you next week for more of our Midwest author interviews.
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