Learning How To Read Again
I love books. Now, I know what you’re thinking, “Of course, you love books. Why would you be interning at a bookstore if you didn’t?” Well, what I mean is I love them, but lately, it’s been quite the task to make it through one from cover to cover. I would blame it on lack of time, but I always have at least a little bit of free time at the beginning and end of every day. I wouldn’t dare blame it on lack of interest because that would be a lie. Interning here has been the ultimate gift. Every Tuesday, the UPS man comes like a khaki-wearing Santa Clause, bounding through the doors with boxes upon boxes of new books. I have not purchased as many books as I could have and it’s only because I’ve been afraid I wouldn’t be able to finish them once I bought them. So, with that in mind, I set out on a mission. Over the course of the past three weeks, I tried reading Small Admissions by Amy Poeppel in three different formats just to make sure that my love of reading hadn’t died.
Audiobooks and I have always been at odds. I love the thought of hearing a book come to life by listening to the author, or a professional reader bring meaning to the words a way I never could. However, audiobooks always felt too passive to me. I want to see the words on the page. During the first week, I listened to Small Admissions and the experience definitely had its pros and cons.
Pros – like listening to music, very portable (downloaded on my phone), voices brought the words to life
Cons – easy to drown out, requires more concentration than I think a normal book would
I got a Kindle during the eReader craze of the previous decade. For three months, it was the best thing that ever happened to me. But, then I moved and I thought it got lost during the transition between houses. By the time I found it again, I’d lost interest. However, for the sake of experimentation, I dug it up and charged it for three hours to make it come back to life and got down to reading.
Pros – very portable, able to keep tabs of favorite passages, less expensive than actual book
Cons – requires charging, doesn’t have actual page numbers
I have a friend who keeps files and files worth of books right on her desktop. She was the motivation behind this final choice. I figured, I always carried my laptop around and had plenty of space to potentially dedicate to books, so why not?
Pros – portable (I know, repetitive, but true), actual page numbers,
Cons – No way of actually interacting with the book, takes away the ability to multitask (which might be a pro to some)
Now, at the end of the three weeks, I can honestly say that I still love to read! I think my ideal medium would be some hybrid of the audiobook and the actual hard copy of the book which could end up being a little more expensive, but I feel like it’s the best of both worlds.