Monday, November 10, 2008

The Great Escape

The Great Escape

I'm convinced there's no such thing as a life without stress, and as women we shoulder more than our fair share of tension, juggling jobs and family, kids and husbands and church and community work and a host of other balls we do our best to keep in the air.

These tough economic times only make things worse, so I think it's more important than ever to take good care or ourselves. That means finding ways to pamper ourselves and deal with the stress. A walk around the neighborhood always helps me feel better, and there's nothing like a soothing bubble bath to ease some of the tension.

But my number one favorite de-stresser is to read a good book. Reading — and writing — have always been my great escapes.

(True story: In school I hated math class. Especially geometry. I have a very poor sense of direction and a difficult time picturing things spatially. I dreaded geometry class until I disccovered I could scribble away madly in my notebook and the teacher would assume I was taking notes. I wrote an entire 'book' during geometry class my sophomore year in high school. That manuscript is long gone, along with anything I might have accidentally learned in that class.)

Some people like adventure stories with lots of action, where they can imagine themselves overcoming the odds. Other people like fantasy or the other-wordly elements of paranormal stories.

Me? I like reading about people who live lives a little closer to my own. People I could imagine having as friends. Heroines I could imagine myself being. Reading about their problems and how they overcome them helps me put my own worries in perspective.

I also really enjoy visiting another part of the country in the pages of a book— either a place I've been before, or someplace new to me. I love it when a writer takes me on a virtual journey to a new town or neighborhood. I don't have the time or money to do a lot of real traveling, but for about the cost of a coffee and a pastry I can spend lots of enjoyable hours in great places all over the country,

In other words, I enjoy stories like those found in the pages of an American Romance. Books that are guaranteed to make me feel good about life by the time I'm done. With the cost of everything going up, books are still one of the best bargains around.

So — what's your favorite escape reading? Do you like beach books? Holiday stories? Scary stories or a good mystery? What kinds of stories take you away from your troubles and help you relax?


Trish Milburn said...

I so agree, Cindi. When life poses a lot of stress, it's nice to escape in a good book. I, of course, love the heartwarming stories in American and other category lines, but I also love paranormal, urban fantasy, YA, mysteries. And I also love movies, particularly going to the theater and escaping for a couple of hours in front of the big screen with my nachos and a Coke. This month, I hope to see Australia and Twilight.

Magdalena Scott said...

I have already dipped into the Christmas romances, and this is early in the season for me to go there. (Of course our Christmas novellas are released tomorrow--maybe that's why I'm already on the Polar Express!)

For the most part I read contemporary romance, sweet or semi-sweet.

But some times I just have to have a suspense, or mystery... I guess it depends on my mood. ;)

Ellen said...

I'm pretty eclectic about my reading.... My favorites are contemporary romance, suspense, mystery, but I'll also read some paranormal. I do not read erotica or especially gory books.

Estella said...

I read all genres, but paranormals are my favorite. Kind of like books, take me away.

Sara said...

I like to read all types of books - contemporary, paranormal,mystery, suspense, just about anything. The biggest thing for me is that the characters sound and seem real!!!