Dance with me, baby!

I am obsessed. After years of people telling me, “You’d really love Madmen. It’s a great show,” I started watching it via Netflix. Now I can’t stop. I’m absolutely distracted. I stay up way too late to watch, “just one more episode,” and sneak another in when I’m cooking dinner. I was the same when that last Harry Potter book came out. I was away with my family for a long weekend at a house in Vermont on a lake. We were there with another family. Only I wasn’t really there. I was at Hogwarts and fighting Deatheaters and hunting for Horcruxes. The entire four days.

Although my friends and family don’t particularly like hanging out with me when I get this way, I still love that experience of watching a television show or movie or reading a book, and I JUST. CAN’T. STOP.  It’s not merely my intellectual OCD either (because I mostly watch what I tell myself is “smart” TV and movies). It’s all about good writing. It’s the attention to detail. It’s building tension, keeping up a good pace and precision dialogue. It’s wrapping me up in the arms of the world that is being built in the book, movie or show, and waltzing me down the aisle. That’s what I look for when I’m screening manuscripts, too. Giving me anything less than that will get you a polite “no thank you.” I’m looking to go all the way…

Writers, when you write, to whom are you writing? Readers, when you read, what sweeps you away?


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6 responses to “Dance with me, baby!

  1. You asked “what sweeps you away” and I can say with some certainty that the “unexpected”, drawing ouside the box that gets my undivided attention.

  2. I actually sort of hate it when books suck me in so much I can’t stop reading. If I really love a book, I want to savor it, and if I’m too absorbed in the story I loose sight of the book. If I don’t love the book but get sucked into the story, I’m pissed at the author for claiming so much of my attention. I guess for me the best reading experience is when I can’t wait to get back to a book, but it lets me set my own pace and spend as much time as possible living in its world.

    • So interesting. And what book achieves that balance for you? YOUR book sucked ME in! I couldn’t stop reading it.

      • Some recent reads that have done that for me: The Lazarus Project by Aleksandr Heman, Gilead and Home by Marilynne Robinson, Room by Emma Donohue, The Known World by Edward P Jones, Lord of Misrule by Jaimy Gordon, everything I’ve ever read by David Mitchell.

  3. I feel the same way! Mad about Mad Men and HP well, it’s kinda an obsession. I compare all reading experiences to it, Do I get so sucked into the world that I forget all time and space of the real world? – if not- meh.

    • I used to finish everything I started reading, but now I just don’t have time for “meh,” especially in queries and manuscripts (and particularly because I’d really like to sneak in just one more MM episode).