How Do You Read?


If we were all judged on our acting skills according to how well we can pretend to be asleep when our parents poke their head in through our bedroom door, then I am pretty sure that would to a large extent, even out the disparity in the social backgrounds of film stars.

We have all done this as kids and perhaps even now as teenagers (or adults!) for IΒ  know I still do. As a child, bedtime merely meant the time I had to be in bed by and whilst my siblings had the remarkable ability to drop off at a moment’s notice, I was not blessed with this superpower as my mind would stubbornly refuse to sleep. The solution? Surf the net on a phone or laptop of course.

NO! Thankfully, gadgets and gizmos weren’t so popular 8-10 years ago and so instead of staring bleary eyed at a screen, I would read. Books of all sizes, stories of all types, fascinating tales and exciting words which thrilled and sped through the cogs of my imagination as I was transported away from my ‘asleep in 40 winks’ mattress and into another world. When my mum would peek in to check on us, I would whip the book under the covers and pretend to sleep but as soon as her footsteps had receded, I would continue delighting in fiction until the early hours of the morning. Even when sleep would come knocking on my eyelids, I would force myself to stay awake in order to get to the final page.

Sometimes of course, the acting would not work as a glimpse of the edge of the book would catch her attention. Then there would be two options. Own up and admit to being awake or continue the ploy by pretending to have fallen asleep whilst reading. If the hour was late, this was the far safer option. I began to master the limpness of a sleeping body and the deep breathing of one lost in the dreaming world.

It was from a very young age that my love for reading grew, this blissful world which you feel you must share with others, lest they go on through life without ever having experienced the joy of losing one’s self in a sea of letters and words.

Now though, we are now more likely to pretend to be asleep when we are in fact busy typing away on a smartphone. Or wait, perhaps it is an e-book? That would give me some hope.

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17 thoughts on “How Do You Read?

  1. I have to say at the moment I tend to spend sleepless nights on my laptop, though reading is really my preferred solution, however I share a bed with someone that nods off to sleep five hours before myself and it is almost impossible to read in the dark. I know it’s not good to use the laptop before bed, as it’s a stimulating device (that humorously can also make a person ‘brain-dead’) but sometimes it has to be done. That being said, I don’t scroll through Facebook the entire night, I have been writing before I decided to catch up on here, but that is actually more stimulating as it excites me too much. So does reading, actually. I had to swap a new book for my laptop because I, like you, would end up not rekindle my friendship with my pillow until it is finished and that could be anywhere between five and eight hours ago right now, which at two o clock in the morning already is very dangerous indeed. Perhaps I should just resort to not doing anything that I am remotely interested in if I meant to go to sleep? I remember I couldn’t sleep one night as a kid, on holiday, so mum gave me her copy of Robinson Crusoe and I was fast asleep before I was even three pages in.

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    • OH MY GOODNESS! I proofread this comment three times before I posted it and changed it TO mistakes. Corrections:

      1. I wouldn’t not end up REKINDLING my friendship with my pillow

      2. that could be anywhere between five to eight ours FROM right now!

      Argh. I am shamed of myself.

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    • Haha! Hmm I must say, as I got older, my phone has begun to get in the way of reading but I have made an effort to ensure this is not always the case. For the past two years, I’ve usually been quite busy with school work and let that be an excuse to me not reading much but this shall happen no more!
      Yes, I guess just lying in bed after a tiring day should put you to sleep but sometimes that just isn’t the case!

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  2. I was exactly the same way as a kid. Even now, though, I have trouble sleeping. These days my late nights are usually spent writing, but sometimes I find a book that brings me back to those days of fashioning forts out of my blankets so my mom won’t see the light under my door and reading long past midnight.
    I think, of all the things a child could be staying up doing, reading is probably the best. It broadens the mind and tickles the imagination in just the right kind of way.

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  3. It’s funny because I was having the exact conversation about reading a few days back! I used to be such a book worm when I was younger, now I struggle to get through a chapter! It’s mad!

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  4. When I was little, my mother would catch me up late on a school night with a book all the time. Instead of taking my book away, she would say, “Finish up the chapter, and then get to bed.” She would leave, knowing full well I would read as much as my eyes would allow me.
    I am never really able to read for pleasure during the school year, which is quite sad. I hadn’t picked up a good book in a while, and then once summer started I found myself reading 8 books in 6 days. Brought me back to childhood!

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  5. I can definitely relate to this. When I was younger, I would devour books at a ridiculous rate, reading past bedtime, and often reading in a dark car leaving the library. It is somewhat a shame that so many electronic devices take over our time now. When I do read now it is often a great pleasure to be lost within those paper pages. Just need to find the time for it and find some good books!

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      • Hmmm… anything that is well written and engaging honestly πŸ™‚ I read fiction, fantasy, mysteries, romance, inspirational stuff… Only thing I can’t handle are horror stories! What about you?

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      • Haha πŸ˜€ I don’t like horror stories either, not sure whether it’s simply because they aren’t entertaining or I’m just a scaredy cat :/
        Similarly I don’t have a fixed genre, I like books that are in a series rather than standalone ones. Timeriders, Maximum Ride, Inheritance Cycle or Jimmy Coates, to mention a few!

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