Let Sleeping Authors Lie

Wednesday Addams

So, I had an idea for a theme this week and it was ‘Eat, Drink, and Be Merry’.  I thought the first two worked together and decided that sleeping should be mentioned.  Anyway, these three things are fairly essential to authors once you step out of the writing arena.  We really can’t function without these three things.  In fact, nobody can, so this isn’t special to authors.  I’m simply using my own life as a focal point.  Now, why is sleeping important?

  1. It’s hard to write when you pass out on the keyboard.  Imagine being at 50 pages and you conk out.  Head goes down and you spend the next few hours having the ‘H’ key be pushed down.  Then the document auto-saves.  Even worse, you’re pushing down the ‘backspace’ key.  Probably best to take a nap and not take the risk.
  2. Some great ideas can turn up when you’re about to fall asleep.  Your brain is just waiting for you to hit the mattress and curl up under a blanket.  Pure genius will appear and you’re going to scramble to write it down.  That or believe you can remember it by the morning, but we all know this fails.  Still, you wouldn’t have this opportunity if you didn’t go to bed.
  3. It’s hard to see what you’re doing when the bags under your eyes are so deep that your eyeballs have fallen inside.
  4. The human brain doesn’t function very well when you’re tired.  Basic actions and thoughts are difficult, so writing a story is going to be nearly impossible.  Oh, you will get words written down, but they might not be coherent.  At the very least, they will be terrible and filled with enough typos to make your editor and beta readers think you’ve been taken by a body-snatcher.
  5. Yawning is annoying, but you can probably muscle through that.  Drooling all over your notes when you zone out could pose a problem.  I mean, you could wear a bib to be safe, but you know that’s when you’ll get unexpected company.
  6. Many people, if not all, get irritable and lose their filters when they’re exhausted.  This can make you’re writing unfocused or aggressive even when the scene doesn’t call for such things.  You can easily fix this, but then you have the social media/promotions side of the job.  One bad review, critical comment, or negative tweet can turn you into an Internet berserker.  It can be undone with apologies, but there will still be some damage.

Well, that’s all I could think of because I’m tired.  My sleeping habits are pretty bad, so I can’t give much advice here.  Feel free to talk about your own thoughts on sleeping and authors in the comments.

About Charles Yallowitz

Charles E. Yallowitz was born, raised, and educated in New York. Then he spent a few years in Florida, realized his fear of alligators, and moved back to the Empire State. When he isn't working hard on his epic fantasy stories, Charles can be found cooking or going on whatever adventure his son has planned for the day. 'Legends of Windemere' is his first series, but it certainly won't be his last.
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35 Responses to Let Sleeping Authors Lie

  1. 7. Dreams! Interesting dreams and the feelings within them lead to story ideas. Hopefully, like with falling asleep, you’ll remember them once fully awake.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I had to laugh out loud at the vision of the repeating H and autosave. Good enough reason to get some sleep. Funny post, Charles.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. L. Marie says:

    Hilarious!!! An actual pillow makes a much softer resting place than the keyboard! 😊 I agree with all of these tips. I can’t write anything coherent when I’m sleep deprived or hungry.

    I look forward to my nightly rest. 🛏️ I have fallen asleep with my phone in hand several times! (Actually woke up clutching it.)

    Like

  4. Lindsey Russell says:

    We sleep to rejuvenate our minds and bodies. We can’t function without doing so. But why does sleep have to take up so much time that could be productive? Solution – learn to become a lucid dreamer then you will remember what you dreamt.

    Like

    • I’ve heard people mention that. Yet, I can’t seem to figure out how to train myself. I don’t remember my dreams to begin with too. Once I’m awake, they’re gone.

      Like

      • Lindsey Russell says:

        When your head hits the pillow think about your characters and what you need them to do – though mine tend to do what they want and I just go along for the ride then adapt what happened when I’m writing 🙂

        Like

  5. Renee says:

    What I would give for a good night sleep! I generally sleep 6 to 8 hours a night, but I wake up feeling exhausted no matter how much sleep I get. Turns out I likely have sleep apnea and possibly narcolepsy. I’m doing a sleep study next month, so hopefully, I’ll be able to get something done about it and start sleeping properly again.

    Like

    • I get 5 to 6 hours, which is frustrating. I was diagnosed with sleep apnea about 3 years ago and have a device to help with it. Not the machine, but a personalized oral device to pull my lower jaw forward. It stops the snoring and allows me to breathe.

      Like

      • Renee says:

        I was told I’d likely need the c-pap machine (I think that’s what it’s called) because of how bad my snoring is. I’ve tried other devices and they help a little, but they don’t fix the problem.

        If you’re still having issues with sleeping, maybe there’s something more that’s wrong (unless it’s stress, which is also an issue). My doctor gave me sleeping tablets I can use, but they’re addictive, so I can’t use them every night. So I only use them when I really need them. They work really well though. Maybe sleeping tablets or something might help you sleep longer?

        Like

      • Stress is the big thing. That and I think I’ve been doing this level of sleep for so long that my body is used to it. Bladder doesn’t help here.

        I tried sleeping pills once and it was a disaster. I slept, but was a mess the next day.

        Like

      • Renee says:

        I usually have issues with sleeping pills too, but the one I’ve got now hasn’t given me any issues. I don’t wake up drowsy or anything as long as I sleep about 7 or 8 hours after taking it. If I wake up too soon, I feel a bit loopy, but it wears off as soon as my normal wake up time. It’s called temazepam if you want to ask your doctor about it.

        Like

      • That’s one of the problems. I wake up at 5:30, which means I’d have to pass out by 10:30 the latest. I’d be in bed by 10, which gives me very little time to relax and get a few things done.

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  6. Definitely agree about the story keeping on in your mind when you lie down to sleep.

    Like

  7. Get this one. Yesterday, Frankie the bulldog fell asleep on my keyboard. She’ll probably have a bestseller before I do.

    Like

  8. Pingback: Author Inspiration and This Week’s Writing Links – Staci Troilo

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