Last night, after getting to bed at a decent hour for the first time in some time (Major Spoilers business three days per week, plus my other junk, although “late” for me is actually “early” for Stephen), I uncharacteristically found myself wide awake at 3:30 a.m.  After failing to convince my brain that it was time for sleep, I took one of the Stephen King collections that live on my bedside table for just such an emergency, and 25 minutes of gross-out terror later (“A Very Tight Place” is that kind of story) and found myself once again drifting towards the REM cycle.  The one trade-off of reading King to get to sleep is the occasional weird dream of playing football with the Great Old Ones or other such frippery, leading us to today’s somnambulent query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) has to be careful, as the other three people in the house are grumpy if awakened, asking: What reading material have you found works best as a literary lullaby to put you back to sleep?


About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. I literally never wake up in the middle of night, unless Im sick or something and thats pretty rare. I cant really read while tired either, so my habit is to put some podcast on low volume on my tablet and usually it works in 15 minutes or so.

  2. Robert Hulshof-Schmidt on

    The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster. It’s my go-to when I’m sick, tired, frustrated, or just need reading comfort food.

  3. Just about anything with vampires as long as it is a good and interesting story. I used to read a chapter or two of vampire novels before bed in Jr. High and High School, and the ritual still puts me at ease and helps me relax enough to sleep, as well as helping shape my dreams to something vampire related like dreaming I’m staking or setting fire to the Cullens with help from Buffy and Blade.

  4. Reading usually will wake me up more, so I throw on an old MST3K episode, usually one of the Godzilla ones. I’ve seen them so often I can zone right out again.

  5. Short story collections tend to work, and the benefit of an eReader means I don’t disturb the better half. I’m currently reading some Wodehouse, but not Jeeves, shorts.
    Failing that, there’s always The Three Investigators series.

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