Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Battle Royale: The Reader vs. The Writer

The past two days I've found myself waging an epic civil war within myself. The Reader vs. The Writer. The Reader wants to, well, read. And read. And read. The Reader stupidly bought the first book in a series and then could not be persuaded to put it down on Tuesday. (The book was The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan. AMAZING!!)

The Reader started reading the book at work on Tuesday. When The Reader got home, The Writer politely tapped The Reader on the shoulder and said "Hi. Um, look, I know that you are really enjoying the book. But you have your own book to write and now would be the perfect time to work on it." The Reader gifted The Writer with an angry glare and promptly ignored her. The Reader finished the book Tuesday evening and The Writer heaved a sigh of relief, believing that the next day she could get some work done.

Not. So. Fast.

The Reader bought the next book in the series Wednesday morning (ah, the joys of having a Kindle!). The Writer cried when Wednesday was a repeat of Tuesday. But now that the second book is done, the Writer is fervently lighting candles and saying prayers that on Thursday she will finally do some writing.

So, what do you do when you get so sucked into a book that it's like ripping off your own toe-nails to put it down? Even when you know you have your own writing to work on? Do you let yourself be sucked in or deal with the pain of separation from delightful book and plop yourself down in front of your computer and write?


Amparo Ortiz said...

I get sucked in pretty bad. It's happening a lot lately, too. Why did I buy SO MANY books this summer??

To top it off, I set myself a deadline for my WIP's first draft. Those books I bought? Yeah. Not helping.

But I guess I tear myself away for a few hours, then go back to reading. Rinse. Repeat :)

Deb Salisbury said...

LOL! I had to make a rule: reading is only allowed on Friday nights.

I'm not good about sticking to it, since I often read on Saturday, too, but at least I get more writing done during the week.

reberto.alberto said...
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Lydia Kang said...

Oh, I have so many problems balancing my reading and writing. I need more hours in the day! There's not enough time to read everything I want to!
But...I am going on vacation soon and will be at a no-internet place'll be books galore for me then~!

Brenda Drake said...

So that explains my bi-polar-ness. I have two personalities--Writer Self and Reader Self. I get sidetracked A LOT, not only by reading, so I had to come up with a schedule. I write in the mornings and right after dinner no matter what (except weekends) and I go to bed early enough to read for an hour and half. That's all I give myself (except for weekends). The rest of the time I fit in with family demands (except for weekends). Then on weekends it's anything goes--I can read all day, play all day or write all day--it's whatever I want to do. That's how I roll. It works for me, but I'm a stay at home mom with teenagers who have mysteriously vanished.

barbmeyers said...

You write first. Reading is the reward for working on your own writing. When you're braindead and too exhausted to be creative any more, THEN you can read for pleasure. Otherwise, give up your dreams of being a published author and become a book critic instead. :)

DaniSue said...

Amparo - I admire your ability to put the books down, I need to work on that for sure.

Deb- That is incredible restraint! I read everyday, I don't know if I could ever limit it to one or two days, good for you!

Lydia - Enjoy your vacation, I'm jealous! Hopefully I'll be getting my own vacation soon.

Brenda - I like your schedule a lot, maybe I should only let myself read at work (which I do a lot when it's slow)

And jeez Mom, you are harsh!!