The night called to me. It drew me out of bed, away from the warmth of my blankets and the body next to me. Sleep was illusive, so instead of watching the minutes tick by, I got up.
With cat-like stealth, I stole downstairs, laptop in hand. I sat on the couch in the glow of the Christmas tree lights. My dog joined me, confused by this nocturnal partnership. He lay at my feet and snored while my fingers tapped the keys.
My house is rarely quiet. There are voices, live and broadcast, at all hours of the day. Little boys jump down stairs and run through small rooms, shooting and sparring through imaginary wars. Teenagers talk and yell and laugh. The noise--it rises before the sun and rarely dies before darkness envelopes us. I love it. I do.
But, the silence of the night was heavenly. Creeks and moans of my old house settling were my only companions. No music floated around, save the songs dancing in my head. I put my hands to their familiar task, my mind unfuddled by the worries of daylight.
My breaks were few, a drink of water, stretching sore hips, getting a blanket to chase the chill. I was happy in the company of my characters. I listened to them as they told me their story. They whisper their secrets and always, they surprise me by their vulnerability, and also by their strength. They pulled me along and time slipped by.
When I stopped, I heard my husband's alarm announce that it was 3am. He was beginning his day before I'd even ended mine. A whole night gone in the blink of an eye. But, oh, what I had to show for it. Pages and pages of words that are knit together now. Carefully crafted they look back at me like a blue ribbon at the fair. You did this. Well done.
I am not a night owl. Today, I am paying the price for my all night scribbling. And, yet, I'm thinking. I cannot get the sweet quiet out of my head. It's calling to me, beckoning me to come again. The temptation is more than I can resist.
They say that writers are crazy. I think it's lack of sleep.