Posts tagged ‘reading’

May 2, 2012

Just to remind you….

Hello my readers. Before I move away from the land of blogging to ensure a lack of failure in finals, I just want to remind all you people, in particularly my 58 followers (58 followers- isn’t that awesome) that my blog is actually not just for fun, I’m actually doing it for the charity World Horse Welfare. World Horse Welfare is a great UK charity that takes care of abused horses in the UK and abroad helping not only these furry creatures but also educating people who aren’t able to take care of them. So even if you just donate £1 it could make the world of difference for the people at WHW and I would be hugely grateful if you could donate. Thank you!

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April 30, 2012

Kindle v.s. Spine

My parents got me a Kindle for Christmas and thought my initial excitement was based mostly on a desire to stop carting around the masses and masses of university books which I take everywhere, a fellow book-loving friend was disgusted. I had offended the name of decent book readers everywhere. I was scum, bowing to popular demand. Her disgust was palpable.

Several months have passed since then, and whilst I still feel that her feelings are somewhat unneccessarily vehement, I have come to the following pro and con list for kindle..

Kindle pros

  1. Price– when you can get pretty much all the classics completely free, I’d say that is a good deal
  2. Speed– you can get books instantly whilst you’re sitting in bed sipping tea.
  3. Portability– I travel a lot, and (as previously mentioned) need large university books for studying- the kindle makes this much, much easier and less painful.
Kindle cons
  1. Feel-I miss the feel of reading a book, of holding it open and just devouring it’s contents.
  2. Smell-I miss the smell- Old book or new, the smell of books is amazing.
  3. Magpie-I can’t add the book to my collection.
  4. Spines-I  miss looking at spines on my shelf. The lack of books in my room is just sad
  5. Pride-I like people admiring my literary prowess when I’m on trains and planes. Like yes, I am reading Dostoyevsky, deal with it.
  6. Breaking-I miss breaking in a new book. The moment when you open that first page and the spine makes those thin lines. I miss that.
  7. Emotions-If I read a bad book, the bad emotions related to that book means I don’t like even looking at it. So whether I re
  8. Availability-Not all books exist on the Kindle. Which is frustrating.
  9. Bookshops- Because I have a Kindle, going in to a bookshop and buying an actual book feels a little wasteful-not cool.

The truth is, kindles are practical. They make my rather nomadic lifestyle, my sad bank account, my university work and my reading habits all co-exist in glorious harmony and right now, I have no intention of giving it up. But one day, when I have the money and my own home in which to display my glorious books, I will probably go out and buy the books I most enjoyed on my kindle- just to put them on my shelf. True story.

What are your thoughts?

April 28, 2012

Humans have a need to read

I think that most bookworms believe that they would die without books (you won’t I assure you) and before this blog I was suffering from a severe case of bookbimboistitis but I thought it would be interesting to share an article I read in the guardian. The full article can be seen on this link, but I’ve pasted an extract out of it. (Copyright for the following extract- the Guardian and Gail Rebuck)

“Psychologists from Washington University used brain scans to see what happens inside our heads when we read stories. They found that “readers mentally stimulate each new situation encountered in a narrative”. The brain weaves these situations together with experiences from its own life to create a new mental synthesis. Reading a book leaves us with new neural pathways.

The discovery that our brains are physically changed by the experience of reading is something many of us will understand instinctively, as we think back to the way an extraordinary book had a transformative effect on the way we viewed the world. This transformation only takes place when we lose ourselves in a book, abandoning the emotional and mental chatter of the real world. That’s why studies have found this kind of deep reading makes us more empathetic, or as Nicholas Carr puts it in his essay, The Dreams of Readers, “more alert to the inner lives of others”.

This is significant because recent scientific research has also found a dramatic fall in empathy among teenagers in advanced western cultures. We can’t yet be sure why this is happening, but the best hypothesis is that it is the result of their immersion in the internet and the quickfire virtual world it offers. So technology reveals that our brains are being changed by technology, and then offers a potential solution – the book.

Rationally, we know that reading is the foundation stone of all education, and therefore an essential underpinning of the knowledge economy. So reading is – or should be – an aspect of public policy. But perhaps even more significant is its emotional role as the starting point for individual voyages of personal development and pleasure. Books can open up emotional, imaginative and historical landscapes that equal and extend the corridors of the web. They can help create and reinforce our sense of self.

If reading were to decline significantly, it would change the very nature of our species. If we, in the future, are no longer wired for solitary reflection and creative thought, we will be diminished.”

What are your thoughts lovely readers?

April 27, 2012

Frivolous Friday

April 23, 2012

3 reasons…

3 reasons I love blogging…

I think it’s safe to say that no one blogs regularly unless they enjoy it. I can think of no other reason to take time out of your day to ramble on in the hopes that someone, somewhere in the masses of people on the planet, actually gives two hoots about what you’re writing. But here are three concrete reasons I find it awesome.

1. It makes me a better reader

I’ll be honest, up until January this year I had pretty much shelved (terrible pun in the making, be warned) my reading habit. It became a thing of the past like- I used to read a lot when I was little. Although I stubbornly refused to relinquish my title as a book-lover I  was only reading 5-10 non university books in a year. Setting myself the challenge, and blogging about it, has motivated me. It shows me when I’ve been neglecting my loving paper friends. Like when, at the end of lent, (bearing in mind that Lent is 40 days and 40 nights) I had only actually COMPLETED one book. I had read many books, but not finished them. Terrible, but it made me get a move on. Without this blog I could hide my book shame, but I couldn’t. Because one of my readers would catch me out, would remind me that my goodreads counter was dangerously low.

2.  I meet people

I always thought blogging about books would make me a better reader but I never expected to meet so many lovely people. Can’t really get better than being able to connect with people who have similar interests.

3. It makes me a better writer

Like most book worms, I entertain often elaborate fantasies about writing and publishing the next big thing, pushing J.K Rowling off her Potter pedestal and having writers bow to my literary glory. When I return from the land of unlikely fantasies, I am often faced with my blog. It is here that I babble inanely about anything and everything that comes to mind and whilst I’m hardly the next Austen, blogging makes me more fluid, more engaged, less worried about what people think and more concerned about what I enjoy. And somehow- that seems to interest people too, making my writing dreams become just that little bit more likely..

So there are my three reasons. What are yours?.. 🙂

April 13, 2012

Frivolous Friday

Starting frivolous fridays off easily. 🙂