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Q&A December, Part IV
1/18/2011 (updated 1/18/2011)

How much of a role does dreaming play in your own creative process? I used to make films and still write fiction, much of which is born as dreams. This seems to be common amongst artists. If you dream a song, is it the story, lyrics, the music? A mood?

Different little bits come from dreams, never the whole thing, though. I also find it useful, when stuck on a lyric or a tune when songwriting, to take a short nap. With luck, you either might dream the solution, or on waking, see things with a newly reorganized brain, and solve it that way.

I remember you telling Chris Douridas that you find you are "inspired" most regularly if you keep "office hours," rather than just waiting for inspiration to hit. I keep this in mind when I'm writing, as it does seem to open more doors than when one is distracted by daily life. Is this still how you work? You tour so much I wonder at your ability to keep space for new songs to show up and get your attention--how do you do it?

And thank you for thirty years of great shows (I saw you first on the "Across a Crowded Room" tour, or maybe it was the "Small Town Romance" tour, I forget). I hope you'll keep putting Oregon on your schedule (and boy, do we need you out here!). All my best, Tracy Hodson (Awi Usdi)

Office hours when I have the time. On the road I take notes that usually get fleshed out later.

I suspect you may have been approached at some point to participate in one of the BBC Transatlantic Sessions television projects. Would you consider involvement in a future series? Thanks, Tim Schneckloth

I did one of the early ones, but not since. It seems to fall at a bad time of year for me.