Hello, I’m J Monkeys. I’m a story binger. Phew. Boy, it feels good to get that out. They say you can’t solve a problem until you recognize you have one. Well, I do. I binge on stories. Only good stories, by good storytellers…but still. I’m a story binger.
You may wonder what brought me to this point in my life. Lots of things, really. Specifically, Julia Quinn, Lynn Kurland, Jude Deveraux, Aaron Sorkin, Eric Northman, Temperance Brennen, Piper Halliwell, Jack Bauer, Benedict Cumberbatch, the fellas of Ripper Street, the ladies of Downton, Walter White and Francis Underwood.
Back in the days before Netflix, I binged mostly through books. In my high school and college years, I’m not exaggerating when I write that I read at least a thousand romance novels. It’s a good thing I’ve had a job since I was 8 years old, to support my habit. And I discovered second hand book stores about the same time I learned to drive. very handy, that.
When the last couple of Harry Potter books came out, my boys weren’t born yet, so I declared each of those days “Harry Potter Day” and nobody was allowed to interrupt me until I had finished the book. I recall wandering the house, cooking and eating all while sobbing my way through the end of Book 6.
In my 20’s I would occasionally by a season of 24 on DVD, then watch the whole thing in 36 hours or so. And Mr. Monkeys bought me wonderful Valentine’s Day gifts a couple of years in a row, the complete series of The West Wing and Charmed. Not together, that would be a strange combination, but two different sets. Charmed comes in it’s very own book of shadows. ;)
I’ve had to limit myself to not watching episodes in order, because that leads to another one and another one until half a day has gone by with me watching shows that I can probably recite. Sigh.
And True Blood? I’ve bought the last few seasons and watched the whole thing in less than two days. Pretty much every moment that the children were unlikely to walk into my office, I was sitting at my laptop, with my headphones on watching the show. If you are unfamiliar, it’s the kind of show that you never know what someone might say (HBO – f-bombs galore – and that’s not the worst of it!) or what might pop up on the screen in the time it takes to hit pause on the remote.
But now, Netflix is enabling me in heretofore unheard of ways! I watched 7 seasons of Bones in a month. A MONTH! That’s like 7 episodes a day. I watched all of Breaking Bad in a few weeks. I watched so much 24 in two weeks that I had to take a break from it. House of Cards, the whole season in a weekend! I’m chomping at the bit for the next seasons of Sherlock and Ripper Street.
Is it any wonder that I seem to have trouble finishing writing projects?! Okay, I’ve admitted my problem. Now it’s time for a solution. Here’s the one I’ve come up with: I vow to stay away from all stories (but my own) until I have written 500 words every day. No word-y, no story. That’s my new philosophy.
Anybody else have this problem?