Monday, September 20, 2010

Author Interview - Alysa Braceau, Dreamshield





      Thank you for joining us as we sit in Alysa's garden over looking the water! You won’t be disappointed in meeting today's author, Alysa Braceau, also known as Dreamshield. Besides being an author, she is a healer and teacher. Dreamshield is a freelance journalist who writes for newspapers and magazines. She has a Healing Practice and gives workshops about the Art of Mastering Conscious Dreaming and Dream Healing. The Sorcerer's Dream is her first book and also won a contest to earn her the 2010 Readers Favorite Award! Congratulations, Alysa!

Deanna:  Alysa, thank you for inviting us into your book tour. Your websites are full of information; I visited many of your links! But first, tell us a bit about you that our readers might not know.

Alysa: Thank you so much! The award was a nice surprise. Readers might not know that after my social and legal study I was a probation officer. My life consisted of visiting people in jail and in clinics and being at court. I can write a book about that period, too.

Deanna: What would readers like to know about you?

Alysa: That I can travel with my dream body and readers can learn this skill also.

Deanna:  I find that quite interesting. I’m sure many of our readers would like to learn that skill. Tell us about your book. I love the cover, by the way!

Alysa: My book is about my initiation into the sorcerer’s world and mastering conscious dreaming; conscious dreaming, also known as lucid dreaming, is dreaming while being aware that you are dreaming. My book is dream pioneering and with the techniques described in The Sorcerer’s Dream, the readers can learn the skill of conscious dreaming.

Deanna:  Not sure if this is different from daydreaming but I hope we find out. Tell our readers why you are especially qualified to write about this topic?

Alysa: Because I mastered the art of conscious dreaming in the past years that I was an apprentice of the Indian ‘Man of Knowledge’ Running Deer.

Deanna:  What sort of comments have you gotten about the content of the book?

Alysa: What I hear is that people start dreaming while reading my book as if they travel along with my experiences and they enjoy that a lot. People find it a challenging, confrontational and exciting trip.

Deanna:  What made you want to become a writer?

Alysa: More than six years ago I met the shaman Running Deer somewhere in Amsterdam. I found him so intriguing that I started a conversation with him. When I visited him a few months later at his place, he invited me to be his apprentice, to learn the art of mastering conscious dreaming, one of the teachings of totality in the sorcerer’s tradition. And he suggested that I write a book about my experiences. At that time I was a journalist and used to write about my personal experiences following new age workshops so I eagerly said ‘yes’ to both of his questions.

Deanna:  This all sounds very fascinating. Do you write under a pen name?

Alysa: As a child I wanted to have a pen name, oh no, it’s different, to be honest I just wanted to change my name because I found my given name, Annelies, too common. I wanted an extraordinary name.  I used to play with names but never got to the point that I found the right one. However, the chance finally came to justify a name change when I published this book. Finally it wasn’t so spectacular because I  forgot all about the wonderful names I collected in the past and kind of translated my Dutch name in a more exotic variant and kept my initials A.B.
     However, Dreamshield is my given name during an Indian ceremony and I really like that one.

Deanna: How much were you influenced by Carlos Castaneda in making your choice for this journey and the ultimate discoveries you made?

Alysa: I could definitely feel this was the path I wanted to follow. This was when I met my dreaming teacher, Running Deer, who suggested I follow the teachings of totality. This was my chance to learn more about the knowledge I was waiting for. Beforehand, I had no specific goals regarding discoveries in comparison to Castaneda. It was ‘just’ that my teacher told me that he was capable of leading me toward the totality within two-and-a-half years. I felt attracted to that goal and I went for that. He also told me that there were big differences in the paths to follow.
      Explicitly he said: “You cannot compare the two traditions because there are different teaching methods.” I explain this in more detail in the book.
      Regarding your question about the discoveries I made about what you can achieve as a sorcerers-apprentice, that has to do with your natural abilities and also (very important to mention again) that you have to put effort in it to face your blocks and release them. I found out how important it is to free myself from convictions, fears, trauma’s etcetera but that became more clear to me in a later stage.

Deanna:  What genre is your book and do you read in the same genre that you write in?

Alysa: What do you think of this: non fiction, autobiography, memoir, body mind and spirit, new age, spirituality. I can’t choose. Besides these, I believe Amazon categorized my book also under chick lit and A Dutch magazine editor (I’m not sure I like this person;)  said my book was a combination of a chick lit and anthropology. I guess that is because I describe the romantic feelings I have for my dreaming teacher Running Deer.
      Chick lit anthropology:  don’t you think that’s a whole new genre?
     And I like to read books from the same genre:  stories about men/ woman who where initiated in tribes from different cultures sharing their experiences. I enjoy reading about their exotic adventures and how their perception on reality changed during their process.  I want to know more about what they learned about  healing and personal growth. 

Deanna: Do you hold classes or workshops to share your teachings?

Alysa: I do. There is a link on my website about that. I will also be in Manhattan, NY on Nov 28th from 2-5 for a workshop and seminar if anyone is in the area. I invite your readers to my sites and ask that they leave me a comment and sign my guestbook. I love to hear from readers and visitors to my sites.



Deanna:  I found your sites very interesting and there is so much information you share with us. Readers, you have to take a few minutes and visit Alysa’s websites! She has Chapter One available to read.
     Last question for you Alysa. We are all proud of something in our lives.  Share with us what you are proud of?

Alysa: I’m very proud of being the mother of  a beautiful six year old daughter, I’m also  proud that I had the chance to write about this sorcerer’s tradition and last, but not least, that after this process of  learning and writing, The Sorcerer’s Dream is an award winning book in the Readers Favorite Contest!

Deanna, thank you very much for having me as a guest on your blog! I would also like your readers to know they can enter my contest that will be at the end of my tour in October. Go to my website and type in 'book giveaway' in the question area and you will be entered in the drawing. Good luck everyone!

Deanna: Alysa, it was a pleasure learning about what you do. Thank you so much for sharing with us and we wish you the best on your virtual book tour. Readers, Alysa has her tour schedule on her website if you want to follow her now through October.