So finally, I get to write a post about my new kindle and other e-reader devices. I got my kindle fire HD for Christmas and felt that a blog post looking at how reading had now changed would be interesting. In a way not much research has been need to write up this post, because most of it is going to be based on my opinion and didn’t want to clouded by other peoples’ which can happen often during research. However, it also means that this post should be on the short and simple side!
I put off getting a Kindle for ages for a number of reasons. My main one was the fact that everyone seems to be staring at screens all day everyday and the pages of book make a massive difference and escape from this. To read books off a screen would be adding to this issue, but also I spend many hours in front of my computer screen typing away at my latest creative piece and the idea of them switching to another screen to read a novel never appealed to me.
When it comes to me and books, I really can’t be separated from them. I love escaping into other worlds, meeting interesting characters and joining them on their adventures. I surround myself with books because I feel safe and I know I can’t be lonely or bored with them close at hand. Parting with books is tough for me to do and often it’s more a case of passing them on to my family, because then they are still in the house! I love shopping for books and in the right mood can spend a whole day drifting from one book shop to another and buying lots of different ones. I believe that part of the reason I started writing was because of this love for books.
My first interest in e-readers was when my mum got a Kobo two years ago. I found that so many books could be got for free and so many more where only a click away. I had trouble getting use to reading off the screen though and having the light weight and slim device in my hand didn’t make me believe I was holding a book. I wasn’t taken with the Kobo, but I was interested in getting an Ipad -like so many other people- but that was far too expensive and I couldn’t come up with a really good reason why I should get one. However, the Kindle Fire did interest me and seems to suit what I’d like to use it for. So, I asked for that for Christmas.
So many doors have now opened since I started using my Kindle. I’ve been reading so many books and also re-reading some of the classics. I’ve also managed to still keep reading normal books because the pleasure that I get out of them can’t be replaced by the Kindle. However, I love the idea of being able to carry so many books around at once and to be able to buy more with just a wifi connect and a click. It still has take a long time for me to get use to reading off a screen and sometimes if I’ve not been reading anything off my Kindle for awhile, it can take me a few minutes to get back into things. After though, I get so into reading that I can forget about it.
E-readers are becoming popular for so many reasons, but the two main ones are that self-publishing has been made easier and there is access to so many books! Self-publishing has been around for ages and online publishing has also been now, but it seems that more and more people are turning their hand at publishing their creative pieces and trying to make money off doing so. This has been great for many authors and most have had books published now because of this. I bet that most of the books would have gone un-noticed by many publishers for whatever reason, which is a shame because sometimes a book does feel like it is worthy of being physically published.
On the other hand, this self-publishing route has opened up the flood gates for everyone and there’s a lot more ‘bad writing’ out there now. I’ve read a few short stories that have got me thinking about this and I know nothing can be done about it and to escape from it going to find a good book to read is needed. Most of the time though this ‘bad writing’ happens because the writer lacks the experience and knowledge. That is something that will improve with practise and time. No one can be taught how to write, they can be taught about the industry and how to do things, but writing is mostly self-taught and comes from learning about the world. So even if a book looks like it will be bad if the title and tag lines interest me, I’ll be taking a look.
The second reason is becoming hard to ignore. Electronic publishing is allowing people anywhere in the world to access a whole range of fiction and non-fiction pieces. This not only includes children and adult classic fiction and poetry, but non-fiction writings and out of print books. Students can get so many books at the touch of their fingers now and the discover of this has made me question why I didn’t have a Kindle when I took my degree! So yeah, it’s great for a whole range of people, not just normal fiction readers.
At the end of that the biggest question still reminds, will I and the rest of the world be switching out to reading electronic books instead of paper ones? Right now and in the future it seems that e-readers will not be taking over books, this is because the formatting of the paper book has been around for so long and it has never been changed in all that time. So because of this it seems it will go on forever. Whilst e-readers will help protect more trees, they need charging and put strain on the eyes. They can be lighter then heavy books though and so good on the hands and wrists, but there really is nothing like holding a physical book and finding the weight of it. Granted they also take up less space, but for a person who likes being surrounded by books, it does very little. So, I think that I shall carry on seeking a balance between reading paper and electronic books.