This is a short story, I think, but I might be wrong.

A man is recruited to enter an authors' dreams to try & bring him out of a coma & finds himself in a hackneyed barsoom type world where the coma victim is a muscle bound hero, it's a desert world with two suns, the damsel in distress is the typical scantily clad princess trope.

The "hero" basically spoils the authors' dreams by manifesting a pistol & simply shooting the monsters dead at one point & the author tries to write him out of the "story" by simply jumping forward several chapters & is both surprised & peeved to find him still there.

The author eventually comes out of his coma & immediately assaults the man when he recognizes him from his dreams, he tries to strangle him if I remember right.

He enters the authors' dreams with some kind of experimental dream imaging tech, basically a two ECG sort of set up linked through a computer with him put to sleep with drugs I think.

1 Answer 1


Sounds like Peter Phillips' "Dreams Are Sacred" (1948).

At the end the hero wins by using a Colt 45 which his father had encouraged him to take with him into his dreams to banish childhood nightmares. There is also a scene where a wicked Queen or something buts in, and he sees her off by continually moving the hemline of her dress. It turns out she has an "analogue" in the real world, and after his revival she cuts him dead.

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    Yes, the Wikipedia summary of the plot is essentially identical to the description in the question. Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 11:11
  • Yup this is it, perfect! thanks :) the source of his colt 45 as from his youth was an element I'd forgotten but remember now you mention it.
    – Pelinore
    Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 18:53

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