Christmas can be a very stressful time of year- from grappling around at the local supermarket for the last turkey to checking the clearance shelves for a Secret Santa gift, making it through to the New Year can seem like such a headache. If that wasn’t bad enough, for book lovers, Christmas means chaos and no silent nights in sight.
Here are 11 practical solutions for surviving the festive season:
1. First things first, do not forget the following equation: Time off work+ adverse weather conditions- any kind of responsibility= stock up on books
2. If you are going to fuel your reading spree habit with coffee, you might as well go all out with a cinnamon, nutmeg, caramel, eggnog or peppermint topping. It’s not officially Christmas if you don’t- you can blame Starbucks for that.
3. In order to survive Christmas Day with the relatives, seek out the most comfortable chair or cosy nook in the living room, sit down and do not move. It is impossible to read a book properly in a vertical position and if you forfeit your space for a second, you may have to settle for the stairs and be at risk from trampling by little children.
4. You’ve been given a Kindle. Smile and say thank you.
5. Good reading posture includes tucking your legs under your body, placing one finger under the next page and placing your nose as deep in your book as possible. Hopefully this will minimise any unwanted eye contact and deter the auntie you haven’t seen in over a year from trying to engage in a conversation about your growth spurt.
6. Christmas dinner cutlery, especially the carving knife dripping in duck fat, will not make a good bookmark substitute. However, the new pair of socks your Grandma knitted will.
7. Winter is dark. Charge your book light on Christmas Eve and be prepared to use it from 2pm.
8. Annoying little cousins, Nana’s dog and chestnuts roasting on an open fire are your worst enemies for the day- beware of the above at all costs
9. If you haven’t managed to settle down with a good book all morning, you are in luck. Be prepared to sneak away at 3pm, you will be able to get away without being seen and that is a promise.
10. Don’t try to follow the plot of a book to movie adaptation – you will be bitterly disappointed. If the producers haven’t squeezed a great trilogy into a flat 90-minute film, they will definitely include a cheesy musical soundtrack.
11. If anyone makes a snarky comment about your lack of socialising, calmly point out that Grandad asleep on the couch, your brother and his friends glued to their phones watching the game and your younger sister upstairs in her room playing with her new toys isn’t a quality contribution to family time either.
12. Finally, insist you can’t do the dishes/babysit the kids/ play charades because you have a headache and head upstairs as early as possible so you can finish your new book in peace.