to finally purchase a Kindle e-reader. I'd held off a long while, but finally I just couldn't stand my curiosity any longer.
My Kindle sat around for a couple of weeks before I downloaded any books, then it sat around another couple weeks before I read anything on it. Although I was curious, the Kindle on my bedside table didn't compel me to open it and read like my printed books always did.
However, once I finally opened my first ever Kindle book (How to Bake a Perfect Life by Barbara O'Neal) and began reading, I quickly "forgot" I was reading from a device. This, I admit, amazed me. I fully did not expect to have this "forgetting" and thought the reading would instead feel awkward. Nope, I read along happily and was fully into the story, never thinking "Huhn, I'm reading on a device and not a book;" well, perhaps I did think this from time to time, but not in a negative way, for the reading experience itself--getting into the story and characters--felt the same as with the printed book.
When I was out of town in Baton Rouge/Paulina, Louisiana, I took along my Kindle, and this, my good friends, is another positive experience for e-readers. I didn’t have to lug along books, which really isn’t so bad if I am reading one book; however, I have been out of town, finished a book, and didn’t have another one with me, or began a book and decided I wasn't in the mood for that one afterall. With my Kindle, I have as many books as I wish to read at my fingertips, and when I fly, with baggage weight fees, taking along a Kindle instead of books/manuscripts will be invaluable.
But the most wonderful thing about my Kindle that made it full worth the price (I bought the wifi version for $139.00) is how I am able to upload my draft manuscripts to my Kindle and read my own work (alternatively, I can upload an author's book I will be 'blurbing/endorsing' without having to have a printed copy). This is, and will be, an invaluable tool for my work. Reading the work in different ways always allows me to catch things I may not see in my word doc, or the printed one. I uploaded the draft of VK III to read (so easy to do!) and it allowed me to "see" things I wanted to work on, and to experience where I had things where I wanted them. I love this! I'll be able to read my galley (last chance to proof) on the printed copy, word doc, and on my Kindle. Shazam!
However, what I missed about reading a printed book is the feel of the book, the heft of the pages, the smell of books, yes, but as well, with an e-reader, I miss the colorful spines on my shelf, and the beautiful covers on my nightstand. Also, while reading printed books, the author's name and the title of the book are at the top of every page—not so with my Kindle (unless there is a setting I am missing?)—and with my pea-headed black holed brain, I sometimes forget who I am reading and what the title is!
Without the visual of the printed colorful covers/spines on my bookshelf/nightstand, and without the author’s name and title of book at the top of the pages, there is this distance between me and the work and the author, and that does bother me. I look for some distance from the author when I am into the reading of the book, but upon picking up the book from my nightstand, and then closing it when I am finished reading for the night (or the end of the book), or even as I subconsciouly note the title/author at the top of the page, I do not want that distance, I then want the connection, which is somewhat missing from my Kindle e-reader experience. That's a flaw I do not know how to remedy or if it will work itself out.
All in all, I’m finding the experience a positive one. Which is why I will also say that I don’t mind paying a decent fair price for my Kindle books I purchase—perhaps not as much as I pay for a printed book that I can place on my shelf, but I consider the experience of reading the same joy on my e-reader that I do on the Kindle.
What about you? Thoughts on e-readers?