Monday, May 3, 2010

Perchance to Dream--We Wish!

BREAKING NEWS! Hank wins the AGATHA AWARD for Best Short Story! "On the House" in Quarry from Level Best Books takes home the coveted teapot! Check Hank's website to read the story--and thank you so much to everyone at Malice Domestic.

The Malice Domestic convention was fantastic--and photos to come---but now, as a result, we're a little sleep-deprived. Which bring up the question...are you getting enough zzzz's?

HANK: Remember when your parents tried to get you to go to sleep? No, no, you'd wail. Foot-dragging, procrastinating, making excuses: I need a drink of water! One more story! I'm scared! I have to tell you something!

Anything, anything, not to have to go to sleep.

And then, New Year's Eve? Remember when it was the biggest deal in the world to get to stay up til midnight? And you'd try and try but it was impossible--"You're asleep!" my mother would say. "We'll tell you about it in the morning."

You know my reply. Say it with me: "I"m awake! I'm just resting my eyes."

In college, I don't think we ever slept. All-nighters? Bring em on. There was so much stuff to do, and so little time ,and we all just wanted to use every minute whether it was homework procrastination or just hanging out. But no one was ever tired! And if you WERE tired, well, it was the 60's. Nuff said.

But now, sleeping seems so delicious. So fervently to be desired. But there's so much to do--and I know I stay up way too late, but how will I get anything accomplished otherwise? Six hours of sleep often has to suffice.

And if I have something important the next day, forget it. I wake up every hour to make sure I'm not late. Because what if the alarm clock doesn't work? And my in-brain alarm fails? (It never has, but there's always a first time.)

How are you sleeping these days, JR's? Getting enough zzzz's?

HALLIE: Resting your eyes! That's how I "watch" baseball games. After five minutes I am O-U-T. No more of the all-night bridge games I used to play in college.

I envy you, Hank. I need at least 8 hours and will happily consume more. But my internal clock gets me up by 7:30 no matter when I went to sleep. The only time I can't sleep is when I have to be up early early to catch a plane. Then I spend all night dreaming that I'm awake and late. Wake up exhausted.

ROBERTA: No one would believe it now, but I used to be a very late night owl and a marvelous sleeper. Of course in college, once I gave up my course of pre-med studies, I chose classes according to when they were scheduled. Now I'm with Hallie--have to have eight hours to feel good, nine is even better. But anything disrupts my dreamy state--definitely having to be somewhere in the am, but even something silly like having someone else in the house. My husband informs me that I'm an HSP--highly sensitive person. In our house, visitors and kids are reminded to "walk like Indians" when they come in late--no one wants to face a sleep-deprived hsp in the morning!

RO: I love to sleep and I'm a good sleeper. But these days I'm lucky to get 5-6 hours a night. There's so much to do between writing and promoting and all of that other stuff I used to do - gardening, hiking, traveling, movies, etc. Unlike Roberta I've turned into a night owl, only I'm not out carousing, I'm answering emails and writing. Okay..I admit to an occasional video marathon, usually the Sopranos, right now I, Claudius.

HANK: Oh, I can sleep through ANYTHING. I mean: people typing , the TV on, lights on, who cares, if it's time for me to sleep, I'm, as Hallie says, O-U-T.

How about you?


  1. First, congratulations, Hank! A well-deserved award.

    Like many of you, I almost never get enough sleep. Sometimes on a Friday or a Saturday when I manage to sleep until almost 7 (imagine!). But weekdays I get up at 5 am to get to work by 6:30, and I'll tell you, being fast asleep by 9 pm the night before rarely happens.

    As for the little sounds - Silicone Earplugs, ladies. Pop them in at bedtime or at the first wakeup (1 am? 3 am?) and all those background noises are gone. Especially useful while traveling!


  2. Thanks, Edith!

    I'm in the car on the way to Oakmont with Marcia Talley, Lila Dare and Elailne Viets..updates to come..

  3. Congrats Hank!!
    I'm in Arizona with no email other than my phone so have to keep it short. But terrific sleeping weather.

  4. Congrats to Hank! I'm not a good sleeper. I can usually fall asleep all right, but if I wake up, my brain goes into overdrive. And once it's light, I'm up. We've just moved to the mountains. Sun comes up at 6 AM. Window treatments are way up there on my priority list!

  5. Yay, Hank! Any chance you'll post some pictures from Malice?

  6. Yes big kudos to Hank, and to both Hank and Rhys for wonderful nominations for best novel too! Rumor has it Rhys was brilliant as the Malice toastmaster.

    And Terry--oh I forgot to moan about the light too. Spring in Connecticut, I swear it's light by 5:30. And we have one moon-shaped window that has no shade. That's all it takes!

  7. I'll try to post Malice pix as soon as I catch my breath. Being toastmaster was--well, hectic, to say the least.
    Hank was a wonderful interviewer--are we surprised?? And many congrats to her for winning the Agatha best short story.
    Sleep is something that doesn't come easily these days. I used to be a great sleeper. Head on pillow and out. Now I'm sometimes staring at the ceiling at 2 and 3 a.m. It's hard to make the brain switch off when I'm writing two books a year and doing all the stuff in between.