12 Reasons I Love My Kindle 2

Last week my Kindle 2 finally arrived!  I’m in love. Totally, completely, head-over-heels in love.  So I thought I’d share a few of the reasons I’ve fallen for this book gadget so hard.


Kindle 2

Kindle 2

  1. Instant gratification.  I can buy a book anywhere, anytime, and have it downloaded virtually instantly.  Okay, so it takes a couple of minutes, but still, that’s pretty darn close to instant gratification.
  2. It’s cool.  Yes, I’m something of a gadget geek.  The first computer I ever worked on had a single-sided single floppy disk drive.  If I needed to print I had to go through a ten step “hand-shake”.  If you don’t know what any of that means, then you know I’ve been into computers way too long.  This Kindle 2 is simply way cool.
  3. One less suitcase to pack for my summer trip to Maine.   One of the joys of our annual jaunt to northern Maine is the long lazy days filled with, among other things, lots of reading.  However, the only place to buy books most years is the WalMart, which has,  shall we say, a limited selection, so I always take a lot more books than I can actually read in two weeks, just in case.  Now I can order from Amazon and don’t have to wait the extra two days it takes for mail to get up there, followed by remembering to drive ten miles into town to check my in-laws PO box.  I can plan ahead, or order as the mood strikes me.  Instant gratification AND less grousing by my husband about how his next wife is going to be illiterate (so he doesn’t have to haul books around for her!).
  4. Cell or Internet connection and I’m good to go.  Okay, this one is connected to the Maine item.  Even if I don’t have cell service (which I don’t at the camp in Maine) if I have internet service (which I do at the camp in Maine) I can easily plug in the nifty dual AC plug/USB cable and lickety-split I’ve got my book.  This goes for my parents’ house in North Carolina, too!
  5. No more hand cramp.  I read in bed.  Sometimes I read elsewhere, but then my family tends to interupt — sometimes just to see steam hiss out of my ears — but mostly I read in bed.  Some of my favorite authors write BIG books, even in paperback.  I get a pain in my hand from holding those books night after night.  The Kindle 2 is very, very light and I don’t have to hold it firmly to keep the pages open.  After less than a week of reading on the Kindle I can already tell a difference.
  6. Did I mention it’s cool?
  7. It’s driving my uber gadget geek husband crazy that I have a toy he doesn’t have.  Even better, I got to play with it first.  Mwa-ha-ha.
  8. Newsletters!  I belong to a number of organizations that send out monthly newsletters (writers do like to write).  The switch from paper newsletters to electronic formats has meant that I read less and less of these newsletters, even those I find most useful.  Why, you ask?  Because if I’m sitting at my desk computer, I try to be working.  If I’m reading email on my laptop in the living room, I tend to be interrupted, so I stick to quick reads/replies mostly.  Newsletters take more time.  I have 5 Novelists Inc. newsletters in my in-box, waiting for me to make the time on one of my computers to read them.  I forwarded each of those emails with attached newsletters to my free.Kindle email account where they were converted and emailed back to me.  A quick trip through the USB cable and they are now on my Kindle where I can read them… in bed, at the doctor’s office, while waiting to pick up my son from band practice, you get the idea. Now I have the ease and portability of the printed and stapled version but better because the Kindle is smaller than the printed version.   For ten cents I could have sent it to my regular Kindle email and it would have been automatically converted to Kindle format and downloaded directly to my Kindle, but I wanted to see how it worked downloading it myself.  I think it’s safe to say I’ll be reading more of my numerous newsletters again, now that I can put them on my Kindle.  I can even set up a rule in my Outlook to automatically forward the newsletter emails to my Kindle acount.  I’d better put that on the to-do list right now!
  9. Font size.  I have reached that certain age… okay, I reached it a few years ago… where I cannot read without reading glasses.  Most of the time, that’s not a problem, but there is are occasions where I’ve either forgotten my glasses, or can’t wear them (hair dye and glasses just don’t work well together!), and I want to read.  In the past I’ve been stuck looking at pictures in magazines I wouldn’t otherwise read.  Now, with a couple of clicks, I can increase the font size so that even I can read without reading glasses.  Nifty!
  10. Word files (converted the same way newsletters are).  I find myself reading more and more manuscripts before they are made into books.  This is very cool but does tie me to a computer to read them and comment on them.   Don’t get me wrong, I could never critique a piece on the Kindle, but if I’m reading to give a cover quote, or I’m doing a first impression read (before doing an in-depth critique read) I could easily do that on the Kindle.  Also, if I’m reading a nearly finished draft of my own work, it seems the tiny keyboard necessary for making notes on the Kindle would encourage me to just read and not edit as I go.  I can see it giving me a little more distance so I can read the manuscript with a more objective eye.
  11. Book prices.  Generally, the price of a book is a little less than the mass market paperback edition or a lot less than the hard back paper edition.  Now I’m an author who depends on royalties to be paid for my work and generally speaking, discounts imply lower royalties, so at first glance this looks bad for an author’s bottom line.  But here’s the thing, there are a lot of my favorite authors who have moved from paperback to hardback releases (with paper generally following a year later).  I don’t buy the hardback.  I wait for the paperback for two reasons.  First is price.  I can shell out $18 to $26 for a hard back or I can buy 3 to 5 paperbacks for the same amount of money.  As a voracious reader, that’s a compelling reason to read other books now and enjoy my favorite author when she comes out in paperback next year.  Second, I read in bed.  See point 5 above!  So, when I can get the hardback version on the Kindle for $9.99 I’ll plop down my money and enjoy that read a year earlier.  The price is lower than the paper hard back edition, but higher than the mass market edition that I would have bought.  Seems like a win-win to me.
  12. The end of stripped books.  You may or may not know that the end of life for an unsold paperback book is a horrible, heart rending, and incredibly wasteful thing.  A bookseller literally cuts off the cover to return to the publisher for a credit for unsold books, then THROWS THE REST OF THE BOOK AWAY.  It makes my book-loving heart hurt just to think about it.  It makes the environmentalist in me cringe.  Mostly, it just makes me ill.   You can’t strip an e-book!

Kindle 2

Kindle 2

I know this gadget isn’t for everyone.  For one thing, it’s pricey and for a long time I’ve been talked out of buying an e-reader because the price didn’t justify it.  Fair point.  But I know a lot of people who will shell out a lot of money on a game system or a fancy cell phone that does way more than make phone calls because it’s cool.  I don’t like video games much or fancy phones (heck, I don’t like phones at all!) but I do love my books so I choose to spend my splurge money on a book gadget.

And did I mention it’s cool?




3 Responses

  1. COOL! You have me convinced! I NEED one!~~~XXOO, Beth

  2. […] folks love their Kindles. Yes, they […]

  3. Wonderful post! My husband and I have a “rule” that any gift cards or holiday bonuses we receive are to be spent on items we want but don’t necessarily need – those luxury items that you can’t justify to yourself to spend your own money on because there is always this or that bill that needs to be paid or something needing fixing or replacement around the house. Landing a better job two and a half years ago, I have a wonderful boss who gives me a juicy bonus each Christmas, and I spend a good few weeks trying to decide what I want. My 2008 bonus bought me a Kindle 2 and I have not regretted the decision since.

    I find myself downloading samples of books I see that interest me that I would maybe not otherwise buy, reading the samples and then purchasing the book! The samples also act as a “wish list” of books I want to purchase. I try to keep myself on an allowance (my husband, like yours, wishes I was illiterate…simply for the number of books that are all over our house:) so I don’t buy TOO many books!

    While I’ve always been an avid reader (have been reading since age 2), I actually find myself reading a lot MORE than I used to…finding the Kindle so conducive to reading in waiting rooms, while riding in the car, um…in the bathroom…, standing in lines, etc.

    Thanks for a wonderful post! All very great points! I LOVE MY KINDLE! I don’t know how I survived without it LOL!

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