I have been playing with stream of consciousness and using them in my writing. In my book The Last Hut (due out mid September 2013) I have written a piece about middle-aged taken from my journal that was a stream of thought outlining my thoughts on the whole thing.
What is stream of consciousness writing?
It is the ability to write down your thoughts and ideas as they come to you. A narrative style that allows the reader to get into you head. As if they are reading what you are saying in your mind.
As our thoughts and words don’t always follow a logical straightforward pattern from one idea to another streams of consciousness as a method of writing flows the same way.
You might skip from one idea to another with no clear pattern or focus on one idea but in a short, frantic, haphazard sort of way.
For the reader it can be a little difficult for them to get their head around the whole thing and if it is too long they might even get bored and start to skip bits.
I have read stream of consciousness without any punctuation whatsoever making it even more intense to read through.
More information worth reading on stream of consciousness
“In literary criticism, stream of consciousness is a narrative mode that seeks to portray an individual’s point of view by giving the written equivalent of the character’s thought processes, either in a loose interior monologue (see below), or in connection to his or her actions. Stream-of-consciousness writing is usually regarded as a special form of interior monologue and is characterized by associative leaps in thought and lack of punctuation. Stream of consciousness and interior monologue are distinguished from dramatic monologue and soliloquy, where the speaker is addressing an audience or a third person, which are chiefly used in poetry or drama. In stream of consciousness the speaker’s thought processes are more often depicted as overheard in the mind (or addressed to oneself); it is primarily a fictional device.”
In the following example of stream of consciousness from James Joyce’s Ulysses, Molly seeks sleep:
“a quarter after what an unearthly hour I suppose they’re just getting up in China now combing out their pigtails for the day well soon have the nuns ringing the angelus they’ve nobody coming in to spoil their sleep except an odd priest or two for his night office or the alarm lock next door at cockshout clattering the brain out of itself let me see if I can doze off 1 2 3 4 5 what kind of flowers are those they invented like the stars the wallpaper in Lombard street was much nicer the apron he gave me was like that something only I only wore it twice better lower this lamp and try again so that I can get up early (1922, rpt. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1986, p. 642).”
You can read Ulysses by James Joyce over at Project Gutenberg