There are many things I should be doing.
I should be brushing up on Physics…after all, as of next Tuesday I will have two blocks of 12th grade girls depending on me to teach them that very subject.
I should be washing my car, or working on finding a place to live, or doing one of the things on my growing to-do list.
All of that may have been easier to handle if I’d spent more time sleeping this week.
If you’ve read my blog before, you will know that I have periodic bouts of insomnia. Of course, there are other reasons not to sleep….
When it comes to reading, I don’t have much self control. I’ll get in bed and think, “I’ll read one chapter.”
Every time I think that, a small part of me does the above ^
Depending on the book, sometimes I do just read one chapter. Maybe, two.
Every now and again, especially if I’m stressed, it’s hard to stop there. (Like if my grandfather just died AND I’m about to start a week trying to do two full-time jobs at once AND one of those jobs is one that is an hour away from the other/ part of it is teaching a subject I haven’t even taken in over a decade. You know, hypothetically.)
When I’m stressed–or if the book is really, really good–then I might just keep going. This is especially bad when I get in bed and pick up a brand new book.
Which is when this happens. ^
I might even get to the point in the story when I go, “There isn’t that much left. I might as well finish it.” Hours later, with eyes blurry from lack of sleep/ forgetting to focus on things more than one foot from my face, I finally stop. Of course, the next morning I feel like this:
Sometimes it feels like an addiction. I know I shouldn’t, but I just can’t seem to stop myself. At least it doesn’t always happen.
Actually, two weeks ago was the first time in a while.
What I read: The first Monica McInerney book I’ve picked up in ages. The first one I ever read was Upside Down, Inside Out, shortly before I studied abroad in Melbourne. This time, I found At Home with the Templetons.
What made it hard to put down: It’s always challenging when the narrators switch. If you’re invested in one character, you naturally want to reach the next time it’s their turn. Throw in a sweet love story, a location I adore, and a hinted at tragedy and…suddenly it’s 2 am.
Then it happened again.
What I read: Terry Pratchett. Honestly, it could have been any of the Discworld novels. As it is, it’s happened with two of them recently. Two nights in a row this week, it was because of Snuff. Before that, it was:
Why it’s hard to put down: There are no chapters in most of his Discworld novels, just page breaks. The narrators also switch around, which is clearly a weakness of mine. Terry Pratchett books often feel like spinning around really fast in a field: there’s a point when it’s harder to stop than it is to keep going.
Anyway, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. It’s down to inertia really. An object in motion will stay in motion unless acted on by an equal or opposite force. See, I’m reviewing Physics after all! (On accident. In an unhelpful way.)
Worst all-time offenders
I’m a sucker for stories that are sweet and funny. If it makes me laugh, I’m a goner. Aside from the aforementioned Discworld novels, there are a few more that I can’t put down.
Such as most books from Sophie Kinsella.
Why they’re hard to put down: She’s great at creating problems so out-of-control that you just know it should end horribly. But the main character is also so likable that you kind of have to see how she’s going to get herself out of the mess she’s made. With witty one-liners and charming characters, I usually keep going ’til the end.
Even if it’s 11pm when I start.
Any book where you’re waiting for something.
Sometimes it’s waiting for a character to realize their destiny. Sometimes it’s two people FINALLY getting together after doing that frustrating “will they, won’t they” thing that fools literally no-one besides the two of them. Sometimes it’s a tragedy that was teased on the book jacket, or for the person to find that final clue that makes all the pieces fall into place….
The worst offender at all: This one is pretty obvious really. It’s me.
Why? It’s nice to get a little lost sometimes. It can be comforting to worry about something, anything but my own life. I read quickly and I love books. They’ve always been a source of comfort. It’s always been my easiest way to escape.
With that said, my first day of work is tomorrow. Perhaps I’ll be able to fall asleep early tonight.
…after just one chapter.