Fantasy, Girl, Sleep, Mask, Mystical

Today, I’m going to talk about writing surrealism. Surrealism came into being at the end of World War I to end rationality about the horror and strife of that era by artists, writers and political thinkers. The movement’s leader, Andre Breton, believed that by doing so, this would lead to freedom of expression. Surrealists embraced the chaos and primal energy of the unconscious and this can be done though automatic writing.

Automatic Writing

Automatic writing is a process that lets the conscious and unconscious voice express itself without limits or logic before the ego gets in the way thus bridging reality with imagination. All you do is write whatever comes into your head without censoring your thoughts. Just keep writing. It might be one word e.g. blank page. The idea is to keep writing whatever comes to mind until your writing starts to flow. I set a clock for ten minutes. It feels like agony at first but once you start doing it on a regular basis, you’ll be surprised how easy it is to get ideas.

Writing under the influence of drugs, alcohol or hypnosis also allows the writer to be free of all limitations to write freely though I’m not suggesting you try these methods. I don’t.

Imagery and Metaphor

Surrealism uses images and metaphors and expands the reader’s idea of what reality is. It creates stories that defy logic and differs from everyday literature because it focuses on imagery, discovery and the characters rather than plot. In this way, it allows the reader to expand their reality and opens their mind to new possibilities.


Surrealism is like a dream but is much more than that because it can be anyone’s dream. You need to keep the reader connected to the story. No one wants to hear about your dream. If you listen to someone talk about their dream, it’s boring.

When writing surrealism, it makes things appear strange, dreamlike and unique. The world the protagonist is in is either emotionally, physically, or magically different, and it highlights what’s really at stake in the story, making it clearer and more urgent.