Reading Habits

I bought a Kindle. I am weak.

(Note: I drafted this post early last week, and it arrived last Wednesday, and I started using it in earnest over the weekend. Nevertheless, this post is written from the perspective of my past self.)

In any case, there are a number of questions that you may be asking yourself at this juncture.

ZOMG That's a lot of DRM that you've signed up for. How does that make you feel?

I'm not wild about it. I mostly view the DRMed kindle stuff as: not as a collection, but rather as a convince for reading specific texts on demand and as needed. And on those terms, I can live with it. There's all sorts of things wrong with what I'm about to say but: DRM is most onerous if you think that the files you download are "your possessions." Because they aren't. When it's just a dinky file that you have the ability to read in a highly convenient way, that's easier to swallow. Having said that, if you're not buying something that you get to keep the books as they are now are too expensive.

I'm about 100 pages into the book I'm currently reading (it rocks, more on this later) and I picked it up the other day to discover that the cats had helpfully chewed the back corner. This isn't the first time this has happened. While I don't really care, I can still read it, part of reason I don't seem to care is that the quality of books as objects these days doesn't particularly impress me. So I don't feel like I'm loosing anything. And if I want a real book-object, such a thing can be had.

I have a suspicion that you have more than a few paper books that you haven't read. What are you going to do with them now?

Read them. I don't think that I'll stop reading paper books, though I think a great deal depends on context. I suspect that I might not take paper-books out of the house very much. I don't have a lot of books, but I certainly have a few, and I know that I mostly have them with me for nostalgia, and not because I actually intend to read them any time soon.

Paper books, on my shelf, represent possibilities, in a way that the object of the Kindle is a possibility. I think even considering the limitations of the Kindle, these two truisms balance each-other out.

How do you think you'll use the kindle?

I think once the initial buzz of the Kindle wears off, I'll probably settle into a rhythm whereby I'll read periodicals, fiction, and documents that I generate (along the lines of slush) on the Kindle along with anything I read out of the house, and then read reference material off of paper. I'm mostly worried about how the kindle might screw with my--often quite good--spatial memory for texts. We'll have to see how this develops.

I'm strongly considering joining a gym in the next few weeks and I hope/expect to read whilst doing the aerobic thing. The kindle seems ideal for this.

I hear your a slow reader, is this really worthwhile?

Perhaps, and I think that my main issue is that I'm really bad at setting aside time to read when I'm awake enough to actually read. This is separate issue from the Kindle, and one I suspect I'll address in future posts. Having said that, I'm attempting to carve out a bit more time for reading in my day--as reading more is a personal goal--so I'd say that yes: Despite my apparent slow pace, a Kindle is worthwhile.


Do you have any Kindle related questions for me?

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