Sunday, April 11, 2010

Up All Night

Our church youth have a yard sale every April to raise money for their summer trip. I'm a pack rat by nature, so I used the annual yard sale to force myself to move out a little of the clutter I've collected this year. Instead of focusing on my closet I decided to go through the books that were still in boxes. I don't really have a place to put them and I thought if they weren’t unpacked for over a year maybe I don't need to keep them. So one by one I drug boxes into the living room and began going through the books.

Most of them are books I've never read. I don't have a keeper shelf. I don't have time to read the book the first time, much less a second or third. So I was a little surprised to find that I had kept a book after I read it the first time. I read the first page just to make sure it was the book I thought it was. Forgetting the mission (sorting the books), I sat in my comfy chair and began to read. Several hours later-3 AM to be exact-I looked up from the book and had an OMG moment. Getting up for work was going to be even more difficult than normal. And I hadn’t finished sorting for the yard sale.

I carried the book to work with me and surreptitiously pulled it out of the drawer to read "just a page or two" several times throughout the day. With only 15 pages left I reluctantly left work knowing other commitments would keep me from the HEA for several hours. When I finally got home that night I finished the book. Much needed sleep was ignored in favor of reading “the end.”

I would love to write a book that kept someone up all night reading. Alas, my skill is nowhere near that level yet, but I can dream. And work. I plan to go back through this book and attempt to deconstruct just what had me so engrossed.

So tell me, have you stayed up all night reading recently?

PS – the book? “Garters” by Pamela Morsi first published in 1992.


JoAnn said...

Nannette, I just finished reading Northern Lights by Nora Roberts. Could not put it down.

I'm like you -- I would love to be able to write an "all-nighter" book.

Cari Hislop said...

One novel that kept me up all night was Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead and I'd read it twice before. None of the characters are very likable, but there's something about them I find utterly gripping.

Jeanie said...

Lisa Kleypas keeps me riveted. And I stayed up all night reading several of the Harry Potter books. Yes, it is my dream to be able to write a book that sucks the reader into it and won't let them go!

Carla Swafford said...

Yeah, I fall to sleep every time I read one of my books...What? Oooh, you mean stay awake.

I most recently did that with Susan Elizabeth Phillips's WHAT I DID FOR LOVE. It was so different (to me) I couldn't put it down. Now I've read eleven of her books and plan to finish up her backlist soon.

Heather said...

I took Kimberly Frost's books (Would Be Witch and Barely Bewitched) with me to trial out of town earlier this year. They kept me up all night which gave me the added edge of being extra cranky at trial (i.e. it made it really easy to be a mean and growling lawyer). Win win!

Nannette said...

JoAnn - I too love Nora Roberts writing. I'm listening to "Bed of Roses" while I work.

Cari - you made me think of an old Peanuts cartoon - Linus, Lucy and Charlie Brown looking at clouds. Linus sees Bethovan conducting, Lucy sees Napolean at Waterloo, Charlie Brown sees "a ducky". I haven't read "literary fiction" since college days. You go girl!

Nannette said...

Jeanie - ooh - Harry Potter. I actually refused to read the final book for months just because I didn't want it to end!

Carla - I remember the first SEP book I read - it was recommended in a workshop. Stayed up all night AND cried.

Heather - it's so hard for me to picture you cranky but maybe you've stumbled upon a work advantage? Maybe another tax write off?

M.V.Freeman said...

Hmmmm, its been a long while since I have read a book that has kept me up...but J.R. Ward has done that, as well as Anne Bishop, even Karen Marie Moning. Ok, I was only going to name one...LOL!! *sigh* I hope to do that one day.

Cari--have you ever read "Anthem" by Ayn Rand, it is one book as a kid I read over and over, it had great impact on me. I love that book still.

Louisa Cornell said...

The first Anna Campbell book Claiming the Courtesan kept me up all night.

Laura Kinsale's Flowers from the Storm did the same thing.

And Jennifer Ashley's The Madness of Lord Ian MacKenzie.

Going through my books is always a dangerous proposition. One page, then two and I am sitting in the middle of the floor reading while the house falls down around my ears.

And yes, I dream of one day writing a book like that!