A writer reads…
It is an old axiom, that in order to grow as a writer, you need to do two things:
- 1. Write
In the world that I live in, there never seems to be enough time to get anything done. I work a full time job, and then I come home and spend another 4-5 hours a night working on blogging and growing as a writer. Not all of that time is spent writing, there are other, less fun things that have to be done, too. All together, it can be excruciatingly time consuming. Add to that all of my other fun hobbies, like beating people with foam swords and staring off into space pretending like I am contemplating the secrets of the universe.
Of course, it isn’t the only thing that keeps me from reading. I do still manage to wrangle together some free time every now and again, and I could fill that time with books instead of any of the other crap things I do, none of which are really productive. It’s slow, though, and always has been because I have to re-read some paragraphs over and over again. Once, I spent almost an hour on one or two sentences. It’s not because I’m a bad reader, I’m not, I am actually a very fast reader.
It’s because sometimes words don’t make sense to my mind.
I suffer from dyslexia.
Books on Tape
I’ve been a pretty big fan of Amazon and it’s products for a long time now, and one way back in March, I happened to be searching through all of its service and came across Audible. Audio books can be fairly expensive to buy, and a pain in the butt to get from libraries, and you can pretty much only get them on CD that way. Audible is priced quite a bit lower than I’ve seen books on CD for at brick and mortar stores, and they offer a handful of different formats to download them in. They tend to have some pretty good sales, too, and if you only want a couple of books, that’s probably the way to go.
I consume books, though, like they’re my primary food source. Back when I had the time and focus to read continuously, I’d burn through two or three books a week. I hate waiting to start a new book. If I was buying books one at a time from Audible, I’d be spending probably $500 a year on books, easily. Fortunately for me, I don’t have to.
Audible has a great program for $15 a month ($7.50 for the first three months). As part of your membership you get 1 credit/month, which can be used to buy most of the books available on the site (some of them cost two if it is a really expensive audio book). In addition to basically getting a half priced book each month, there is also a fairly large selection of excerpts, short stories and interviews available for free to members. Of course, there are also other incentives and promotions, but those two selling points are the big ones for me. I’m not too big into having a free audio subscription to the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal, although those are complimentary in my Audible membership.
I haven’t checked out their collection of radio shows yet, either. I’ve been meaning to, but I’ve just got too many books on my wishlist before I get to that point. Maybe in a few months, or more likely years, I can do a review of those as well. So far, I’m enjoying being able to absorb books again in general, usually while I’m driving to and from work.
It’s like I’ve added an hour of reading time a day to my life, and I personally think I’m better off for it.
Check it out, they even offer a free book as a trial for the membership plans. What could it possibly hurt to add one more book to your noggin, right?