Insomnium is Latin for a "waking vision." What interests you about blurring the line between dreaming and "real life," between consciousness and unconsciousness?
The main character of Insomnium, Nel Hanima, is in a place in his life where nothing is as it should be, nothing is functional. The worst part is that he has no idea how to move himself toward something better.
The dream forced upon Nel and his friends is an inverted wake-up call, forcing them to deal with their respective situations. I think that, when we peel away the surface layers of reality, we’re forced to ask ourselves really hard questions about who we are and what we’re doing with our lives. Nel can’t do this in his waking life, so the City of Nowhere comes to the rescue.
Your story deals with multiple characters in a dream-like scenario. One of the questions you ask is, "Who is the one actually doing the dreaming?" Tell us more about how this question ties into how much of our reality and identity is formed by our perceptions.
That is the big question for most of Insomnium. Whose mind created all of this? Could it be one of us? What does the dream have to do with us disparate people, who don’t even originate from the same universe?
Put differently: why are we here? Why are any of us doing what we do? Our answers define who we are as people and how we interact with the rest of the world.
The twentieth century has created some massive philosophical questions for humanity. What is the “right” way to spend our time on Earth? In many parts of the world, we’ve solved hunger and disease, but now that we no longer struggle to merely exist, what should we be doing with all of our time?
Finding answers to these questions, I think, is the key to our identity crisis. I’ve developed an answer for myself, which I think Insomnium will make clear, but I believe it is up to each individual to arrive at his or her own answer.