Thank goodness for my sweet husband Dan. He’s my best editor, and right now, when I’m rushing to get the first book of a new novel series finished by deadline, he is a lifesaver. I finish a chapter, then call him to my desk to critique it. He drops whatever he’s doing and comes. His comments are constructive and… well, honest. (Sometimes so honest I have to bite my tongue to suppress a few choice words of my own.) Eighty percent of the time, I agree with his comments. That’s a pretty good average, I’d say.
But here’s the problem. As soon as Dan sits down and starts to read my work, he yawns. A big, sighing yawn. Immediately my confidence sags. If my loving husband is bored with the first paragraph, readers will slam the book shut. Wait! What am I saying? If the reviewers all fall asleep, there won’t even be any readers!
The other day Dan–caught between an irrepressible yawn and my sagging ego–handed me the results of a study conducted by psychologists and researchers who study, you guessed it, yawning. Their conclusion is that it has nothing to do with boredom, nor with rudeness or even fatigue. Seems that yawning helps to cool the brain so that it functions better.
Andrew Gallup, a researcher who specializes in yawning at New York’s University of Binghamton, says, “Our brains are like computers. They operate most efficiently when cool. Our research indicated that we yawn in response to increased brain or body temperature.”
So, for each chapter of my book, Dan actually begins by cooling his brain so that he can give me the best critique possible. Just like a finely tuned computer. What a guy!
Thanks, MacDan. Ready to read my next chapter?
“Yawning lifts our moods. It’s good stuff. And it’s free.”
Patt Lind-Kyle, Heal Your Mind, Rewire Your Brain