Saturday, 6 August 2011

Travels With My Kindle

So I'm heading off to the Scottish Borders today. Don't worry, I'll still be blogging here and there, I'm staying with my parents so I'm sure they won't mind me tapping away for a bit each night. This is the time where the Kindle comes into its element. Yes, there are a few real books in the bottom of my suitcase, but it's nice to know I can chuck the Kindle in my handbag and I've got a spare 30 books just in case!

I'm currently reading a hardback, which in hindsight was not the best choice considering I knew I'd be getting on a train today. I haven't been on a long train journey for years, I must be losing my edge. I suppose if I were not changing in London, I'd be more likely just to wedge it in my bag along with the snacks and survival kit but as I am, I think I'll be starting a new ebook today. Despite what some nit-picky gadget reviewers say, the Kindle is small and light. OK it won't fit in your back pocket but it fits into any practical handbag.

364:365 Penultimate Day

I'm not a complete convert, I do like to be surrounded by real books and I've barely read any Kindle books this last month. After the initial request frenzy after discovering NetGalley, I've calmed down a bit and also have acquired a pile of print review books to get through. When choosing a book to read next, I always go to the bookshelves first so ebooks tend to get forgotten. Of course, an ereader is essential to anyone wanting to review electronic copies of books in the long term. One or two on the laptop is OK but detracts from the reading experience. It's just a shame it's such hard work to wrangle S&S Galley Grab titles onto it, come on Amazon, make it digital rights managed PDF compatible!

Other things I like about the Kindle? It's battery life is superb. As an iPhone owner, I'm forever having to remember to charge the damn thing. Having the WiFi switched on will slowly drain the power, but if you switch it off you can be sure when you grab your Kindle, it won't have suddenly run out of power. The low battery warning comes with plenty of time to go before it dies on you. I've plugged it in this morning for a boost but I won't be taking the charger with me... that's unthinkable for most gadgets!

Whilst indoors, I do still prefer a paper book, if you're lucky enough to get a blindingly sunny day, the screen is much easier to read from than reflective paper. And if you are sunbathing, it's easier to hold the Kindle in a variety of positions that don't result in muscle strain. Got greasy sunscreen covered hands? No problem, Kindles wipe clean. I am a little wary around sand though, but I most sit out on the cliff tops above the beach. I guess don't bury it and you should be fine.

Ebooks in general make such a sensible business case to publishers. A number of publishers are dusting off the vaults and giving us a wide selection of out of print titles in ebook format that they otherwise wouldn't have been able to justify re-printing. There's no warehouse storage costs and if no one wants them, all you've wasted is time. Of course, it will be sad if we can no longer wander off the high street and pick up a paper book but we need to be aware there's a balance before we loyally take sides.

I hope you all have a lovely week. I'll be on Twitter and checking emails but probably not getting round many blogs. I'll be arranging guest posts for my next holiday but I'm holding the fort by myself this time. If you do want to write a guest post (for September) get in touch.


  1. I noticed a couple of bugs in mine. I was reading outside in the sun last weekend and two teeny tiny insecty things walked inbetween the screen and the casing. I never saw them come out...

  2. Oh no, they're probably busy changing the words!

  3. Hope you enjoy your holiday. I have always said I would never get one but the more people I see with them the more I am considering it. Have been noticing them all over the place recently. In saying that I have books on my Ipad that I haven't read yet and every time I consider it I end up picking up a paper book instead.

  4. I'm on a month long holiday to America and having the kindle has definitely reduced my baggage weight! The only 'problem' is that you can't read it whilst taking off or landing on a flight. But still, it means I only need one proper book, rather than many :)

  5. I hope I can also travel while doing what I want in life. I envy people like you.

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