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Kindle Obsession

Has anyone else suffered? Anyone else glued to their Kindle?

I am.

I haven’t read as many books in one year as I have since I got my Kindle. And the best of it was, that I wasn’t even really interested in having one at first. I like books and I like to see them sitting on shelves, but I had to be practical. I have nerve damage in my hands that make holding the most normal paperback uncomfortable. My phone upgrade was due and I saw that I could get a free Kindle with my upgrade, so I took it. Within days I was obsessed.

A few days before getting my actual Kindle, I downloaded the version for the PC from Amazon and I was amazed at the kind of books you could get for free. Within hours I had all the classics uploaded onto my laptop. So once I had my Kindle in my hand, fully charged and ready to go, I went a little bad downloading books. I found hundreds of websites online where you could download Kindle books for free e.g. The Guttenburg Project.

What became a problem was overloading my Kindle with too many books. Not like that’s a problem for the Kindle itself, but it was for me, when I finished a book. I had so many options I was going mad trying to decide what to read next, knowing I couldn’t pick them all. So I came to the decision to transfer all my books to my external hard drive, and start my Kindle blank. I uploaded two of my all time favourite series, which I’ve read before and knew I was likely to read again, for those times when I was stick for what to read and needed a good, familiar friend to turn to. Then I picked out about 10 of the best solo books I had and added them into a folder ‘next’. Then I shuffled through and picked a further four series that I’d never read but always wanted to and added them.

I find the ‘Collections’ choice, of putting books into folders to be great. It really helps me organise myself and my choices. But then, I had this problem that whenever I bought a new book, I downloaded it to my Kindle and kept it there. Within a few weeks I had about 20 pages of books on my Kindle and was getting into the same bother.

So now, I have one page. That is it. I’ve decided that if I’ve only got 1 page of books, in folders, then I have enough to read for a few months, I don’t need to download new books until I’ve read what’s already on the Kindle, and those books are more likely to be read. Because I was getting into the old habit of buying lots of books and never reading them…which I did with paperbacks and so it wasn’t helping much. Now with one page, I work my way through a folder at a time. When a folder is finished, or when I’m charging my Kindle, I remove the books I’ve already read to my hard drive and keep only those that are current or future reads. I DO NOT add other books unless I delete about two folders worth.

And you know what else I love about Kindles? The battery. One good charge and the Kindle can last for a whole month. Or longer, depending on how often you use it. What no-one tells you openly, is that you use up that battery a heck of a lot quicker if you use the Notes/Highlights option, or you are connected to the internet. I found this out the hard way. I was editing a book I’d written, making Highlights for things I had to change on the original manuscript the next day, and it sucked out my battery within two days. So when I use my Kindle during the day, for whatever length of time, and I’m at home, I plug it in to get a charge at the same time.

But the beauty of the Kindle is that it can go anywhere with you. I have a lot of hospital appointments and you often have to wait an hour before you even get seen, so the Kindle is brilliant for this. You can get a chapter or two read in the amount of time you’re waiting and it’s so much easier, handier and lighter to carry your Kindle with you than a book. Plus, the excellent thing is that there is no embarrassing front cover for anyone to see. If you want to read Harry Potter, then no-one is looking. If you want to read something a little risky or that would shock people if they saw the front cover, then don’t worry, no-one can see.

So go ahead…be brave…pick up a Kindle and give it a go. You might just become as obsessed with it as I am.

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