Sunday, July 3, 2011

Are you a 4 am writer?

There are very few books that I have stayed up past midnight to read, or as my husband likes to call it 'Pumpkin Time'. Normally my brain just stops functioning and I’m forced to go to bed.

But last night, or rather early this morning, I found myself captivated in a way that so rarely happens for me.  I found myself thinking ‘just one more page’ then ‘just one more chapter’.  When all was said and done I finished the book, turned out my light, put my head on my pillow and drifted off to sleep as my clock clicked to 4:03 am.

There are probably less books than I could count on one hand that I have done this with.  That is not to say I haven’t read a lot of books or haven’t found a lot of books I thoroughly enjoyed.  What I am saying is the power and the passion of the author’s writing made it physically impossible for me to put the book down until I had read every single word she’d written.

Most of my 4 am books have been unexpected, by authors I hadn’t read before or in a genre I don’t usually read.  My goal therefore is to be that kind of writer.  To share my stories with readers of all kinds in a way that makes it physically impossible to put them down.  I want my readers to eat meals with my books, go to the park with my books, stand on a subway platform and miss their train because of my books (though I don’t want anyone to be late for work).  I want my readers to go to bed with my books and stay up into the wee hours of the morning until they have read the last word on the last page and then leave them wanting to turn around and read the whole thing over again.

So from this day forward I pledge to write stories so captivating that when the clock strikes twelve they ignore the chime (and the rotting pumpkin) and keep right on reading.

I pledge to be a 4 am writer, do you?


  1. I am too am a 4am writer! Once the clock strikes 12 and house is quiet and the family asleep...even the dogs are snoring loudly on the floor by my feet...that's when the voices come freely, and that other world I live in opens up to me. It does make for a sort of zombie like existance in the light of day sometimes...but I can live with that! I've just clicked the button to follow your blog.

    Erica Lucke Dean

  2. I used to be a 4 am writer in college. Actually I am a computer programmer so I was also a 4 am coder too :)

    Now I have to get up at 5:30 for work so I have to be sleeping at 4 am :(