So here are my seven tips for happy reading during this crazy time of year.
1. Disconnect the doorbell. I tend to turn my cellphone off, so I don't need to especially remember to switch that off, too. If someone knocks on the door, it's only a courier (truly, it's not your great-aunt who's travelled three hours to visit you) and you'll collect the parcel later.
2. Eat a Christmas treat. You know you don't ever manage to snaffle the best treats at parties, so indulge now. If you're sneaky, you won't even have to share with your family (good luck ignoring your pets, though).
3. Don't you dare read a book you feel you should read, either for your book club or because everyone at the office is pretending they've read it. Read something for pure (or impure!) enjoyment ;)
4. Lounge around in your pjs. No one will judge you - well, they might if they could see you, but you've disconnected the doorbell, remember?
5. Let your emotions flow. Is the scene sad? Bawl your eyes out. Is it funny? Snort and giggle. Is the scene infuriating? Throw the book -- uh, no. If it's an ebook, don't throw your ereader against the wall! Santa mightn't bring you a replacement, naughty girl.
6. Stop reading for a minute and think of the chores you should be doing. There, don't you feel extra-happy at avoiding them? Maybe if we wish hard enough, Santa will share his housecleaning elves with us?
7. Have a second book ready and when you've finished the first, simply re-stock your plate with treats and keep going!
Read on! and Merry Christmas!