Thursday, May 8, 2014

Novel Withdrawal

The verdict is in. For the past month, I’ve been suffering from an acute case of novel withdrawal.

It’s a nasty business. Trust me.

Novel Withdrawal

When I reached the last sentence on the last page, shut the book, and set it on my shelf, I knew it was going to be rough. I’d just spent the last week immersing myself in the lives of some very beloved characters in some very trying circumstances.

Twelve hundred pages of it.

And it was over.

With a cliffhanger ending too.

Sometimes I really wish I could read just a tad slower and really savor the story, instead of simply devouring it.

But this novel was just so good. I couldn’t help myself.

And so I’ve spent the past month dutifully trying to start other novels … only to scarce get past the first page before setting them back on my to-read shelf, sadly disappointed.

Oh, there’s nothing wrong with them.

It’s not because they’re bad novels with hole-ridden plot lines, poorly written prose, or cartoon characters. They’re just not the story I want to read right now.

Yep. Novel withdrawal. Reckon I’ve got it pretty bad.

And the worst of it is … the next book in the series won’t be available for quite a while. *sigh* Reader problems.

Have you ever suffered through a bad case of novel withdrawal? (Please tell me I’m not the only one who goes through this …) What book were you reading and how long was it before you felt like picking up another book?

17 comments:

  1. Let me try to guess... Words of Radiance, by Brandon Sanderson? Maybe?

    I am actually similarly afflicted, but with Lack of Really Good Books syndrome. I was plugging my way through Shakespeare's histories, then I read Henry IV Part 1, and now I've hit the wall. I find that requesting books from the library that I've wanted for ages helps. And watching Top Gear. (I love Top Gear!) And eating ice cream, preferably at the same time.

    One thing I've noticed is that when I'm on edge about a book, there's absolutely no use trying to write anything. : ( Very frustrating.

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    1. However did you guess? Yes, it was Words of Radiance. Such a good book. I'm helping myself through my novel withdrawal by re-reading his other related works and figuring out how they all connect! :)

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  2. Oh yes, I've had that. First time was after I read the second Berinfell Prophecies book; the worst I've had it was the time I read Heartless. I think that if I hadn't had far too much free time on a trip I took right after reading Heartless, I might not have picked up another book for a month.

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    1. Yay! I'm not the only one! Although, come to think of it, I'm not sure it's the sort of thing one should get excited about since we are suffering from a terrible affliction. ;) You have my sympathies!

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  3. Yes, I've had novel withdrawal. Perhaps not bad as you've had it, but I had a distinct time period recently in which I was just tired of reading. And I think it was after reading a book I didn't like. Then a new Tale of Goldstone Wood came out and resurrected my love of reading! :)

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    1. That's true! A book you don't like can leave you feeling equally sad and discouraged and completely disillusioned.

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    2. Oh, poor Hannah! We're glad you're cured. : )

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  4. This is a scenario snatched straight from my life! A good book is like pie to me; I finish all too soon, and then I just sit and moan.

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    1. An apt description. Sometimes books are just so good you can't help gobbling it all down at once ... and then of course you can't help feeling a little sick afterwards. Ah well, I suppose "You can't have your book and eat it too ..."

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  5. Oh, my, I know how you feel. It's very trying because so many times, I'll read something I love at a breakneck speed and then nothing I read afterward compares. Novel withdrawal happened to me after reading Shadow Hand, which I devoured and then turned around and read again because I couldn't find anything else that grabbed my interest. I, too, wish that I read slower at times.

    Another problem I have is that I often find books I long to read, but, alas, they are not in Braille or audio formats. That is simply maddening! I've missed out on some terrific authors because of this. I actually was only able to become acquainted with the Tales of Goldstone Wood series because I wanted to read Heartless so much I commissioned a transcriber to braille it for me. The cost was worth it, and the transcriber was so moved by the story she herself took the initiative to braille the rest of the series! Proves what a wonderful writer Mrs. Anne Elisabeth is, doesn't it?

    Hope you find something good to read soon. God bless.

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    1. I've done that too! Sometimes when I really love a book or the characters in the book, I'll re-read it immediately after reading it the first time. I usually read so quickly the first time around that I actually need a second reading to fully appreciate the story and character development and author brilliance. :)

      Wow! That's awesome that the transcriber put the whole series in braille, Meredith! I'm glad you were able to enjoy those books. Ms. Stengl is a great writer. :)

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    2. Your dedication to reading and writing is an inspiration, Miss Meredith! : )

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  6. I'm having something similar I think... I've been reading, but I haven't read anything really spectacular in a couple months and it's starting to get me down... I've started to not feel like reading because I haven't read anything amazing in awhile. I mean, the stuff I've been reading has been good some of it but... gah.

    And I have SO many books I want to read that I think I'll like but I'm stuck in the middle of a few that I feel like I'll never finish and that's annoying. :P

    Haha, when I first saw the title of this post, I thought it would mean that you were having writing withdrawal (from one of your own novels)! I'm glad to see this is not the case. ;) But I do hope you get over that book and find another good book soon!

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    1. I actually am. To a minor extent. :) But that's because I've had to set aside one project for the time being to finish another more time sensitive project ... and the characters from the first project simply refuse to be locked away! They keep pounding on the door, begging me to let them out and tell their story ... which makes it rather difficult to write the other book! ;)

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  7. Glad to know that series is such a good one! It's been on my TBR list for a while but I may bump it up a bit! What is the age-range for the series? Is there anything in it inappropriate for a 7-year-old to at least overhear (if I were to get the audiobook)?

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    1. Brandon Sanderson's Stormlight Archive? I really enjoyed it. It's epic fantasy written for adults, so there are some pretty intense battles and bad guys. World coming to an end and all that. There were a few minor references to things take place off screen, but overall the book was clean, though I can't remember if there were certain words used that you might not want a 7-year-old hearing and repeating...

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  8. It's been a long time since I've had novel withdrawal. Like some other commenters, I think it's because of a shortage of potent literature. The last time I can recall having such a feeling was after reading The Thief and The Queen of Attolia. (Haven't gotten to the King of Attolia yet; our library didn't have it, last I checked). It took me several days to work Eugenides out of my system and to think about anything else!

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Love hearing from y'all, so please join the conversation! All I ask is that you keep all comments friendly with the goal of starting enjoyable conversations about fantasy and good books with other novel lovers! Overly negative comments will be banished to the netherworld and the less than pleasant company of the various balrogs, trolls, and monsters already imprisoned there.