Sunday, March 17, 2013

Leafing Lessons #2: Embracing Your New E-reader

After the success of last week's "class" on more purposeless reading, I've decided I might just as well keep preaching my various and arcane bookish lessons at you.  It's far more easy and entertaining than doing the practical work of, you know, reviewing books I've read.  This week we'll delve into how to love your new e-reader, the gadget that maybe you thought you'd never have much less actually enjoy having.

Disclaimer:  It is possible, nay, highly likely that you will find little to no useful advice in this post, but with any luck, you will be mildly entertained.

Further disclaiming:  Once again we're enjoying frenetic changes of point of view in which the words "I" and "you" both pretty much refer to me as I give sage advice make excuses for my odd bookish behavior.  But maybe also actually you, too!  Carry on being perplexed. It's all part of the fun.

  • Buy Cheap Ebooks.  Download free ones.  It's fun, it's easy, and very often, I've found, you can come by unexpectedly excellent reads on the cheap.  Deals abound - I heart Daily Cheap Reads and also when April at Good Books and Good Wine writes up her Fill Your Kindle posts.  Also, you can get lots of classics for free and then read them in a font size that won't cripple your eyesight forever. 

  • Um, then read some of those books.  Sure the little cover pictures are fun to look at, but once in awhile it might befit you to read some of those excellent and exciting books taking up residence on that book buying device of yours.  Ask me how I know.

  • Let not your conscience trouble you about your fresh ebook obsession.  Do you feel like a poop for holding out so long on getting an ereader only to quickly dismiss all your objections to abandoning the paper books of your youth for their e-cousins?  Fret not, just open your wallet a little wider and buy all the books, paper and plastic (?) alike!  Extra points for buying the e-book version of the paper book you already have, and vice versa, of course.  Is your obsessive tracking of the Kindle Daily Deal and the monthly $3.99 and under specials making you feel like a nutcase because you actually wake up early on the first of the month to see what new treasures await?  Additionally, do you feel occasional guilt for feeding the Amazon machine? Fear not, any money spent on books and any excitement felt about books is never wasted.  Also, everybody knows you're a nutcase already.  Just go with it.

  • Slurp up a few "Read It Now" selections on NetGalley.  All the fun of reading and reviewing e-galleys before they're available to the public without that unpleasant fear of rejection or that vaguely disgusting feeling of selling yourself to publishers by talking about how you are universally loved (or, uh, not) across sixteen types of social media where you post insightful content (or, ummm, not) with stunning, nearing on robotic regularity (or...well...not). Maybe you can work up to requesting books later,  when your self-esteem has increased, and after you're caught up with all the paper ones.  Quit laughing.  I can catch up any time I want.  If I quit my job...and sleeping...and eating...  Wait, I can read and eat at the same time.  Put eating back on the menu.

  • Revel in being able to turn pages with no more than your pinkie knuckle.  Do you have a serious need to peel and eat an orange but can't bear to put your book down long enough to do it?  Now you can! Just make sure you don't get any juice on your pinkie knuckle or you might find yourself trying to "turn pages" with your markedly less dexterous elbow which is mildly more challenging.

  • Get in the Cloud.  And welcome to the 21st century where you can sync your reading across six different devices (or whatever) that are about 74.5555% smarter than even you can contemplate.  I mean, I've got no great love of reading books on my iPhone, but it feels good knowing that if I'm stuck waiting somewhere without a book with me (horrors!), my trusty Kindle App can save my foolish @$$ from certain boredom unless I've fallen into a scary 3G dead zone. 

  • Find excuses to travel.  Then when you say things like, "I only got this thing so when I travel I don't have to lug around my weight in books just so I'll have an appropriate amount of reading options while away from home," it will no longer be total crap.  And you get to travel.  Without any lasting damage to your spinal cord.

  • E-books?  Ebooks?   Are you bewildered by whether you need to use that pesky dash between your "e" and books or reader?  Me too.  You should probably use a mixture of the two and hope no one notices.  Extra points for then drawing attention to the already obvious fact that you are a dolt. 

This post brought to you by my Christmas Kindle Paperwhite, an obsession I never thought I'd have.

Now, if you wanted to recommend a few more sites where I might find decent ebooks on the cheap, that would totally not be enabling me.  That would just be a really nice thing for you to do.  Just saying.


  1. So glad you put eating back on the table. I love eating and reading. They're kind of like Reeses Peanut Butter Cups--two great tastes that taste great together. (Except I don't actually eat my books--but you get the idea.)

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  3. Dang Kindle Daily Deal gets me every time. EVERY.time.

  4. I loved this post, especially the shout outs to strange e-reader behavior and other sites to fuel the passion. Thanks!

  5. You probably already know this, but Amazon and B&N nearly always do price matching. So if you happen to see a deal being offered for Nook, you can most likely get that same deal for Kindle. That's what I am always doing, except the other way around because I have a Nook. Ah I love my ereader so.

  6. Ha! I do try not to buy ALL the books but there have been a few times where I invariably buy the ebook only to get a copy in print too. I blame it on inadequate checking of my book lists to make sure I'm not getting duplicates. I do love being able to sync up all my smart devices. There is comfort in knowing I will never be without a book or 300 or so.

  7. Love this! Eating and reading are two of my favorite hobbies. Luckily for us, we can do both at the same time! ;-)

  8. Scouting out e-book deals is something I've definitely been wanting to do more of. I have a Nook and I haven't actually bought very many e-books for it. But I have read several books on it through my library's e-book system, which I think is a fabulous idea! I just wish they just had more titles!
    - Amy,

  9. Haha! Love this post! I'm all too guilty for taking advantage of the cheap e-book deals. And, nowadays, I will buy the electronic copy of a paper book I own just because I know I'm more likely to read it sooner on my e-reader than on the shelf. Especially those pesky chunksters.

    I have both a Nook Color and a Kindle Fire, so am very spoiled in that regard. Can't decide which I like better . . .

  10. love this post! I am still transitioning to my e-reader but mostly because I have so many paper books and have dug my heels in on not buying the same ones in e-book. At this rate, I should be reading on my e-reading 100% of the time sometime in 2020!

  11. Meg, I just caught this post as I've been awol a bit. You had me on the floor roaring. (the travel thought especially) Love my Kindle as well.