In an effort to “add time” to my day and include more books to my routine, I’ve started using audiobooks to make effective use of my time and squeeze in as much reading as possible. I started back with The Passage by Justin Cronin because it was such a beefy volume. Plus, I had the credits racked up in my account and I was itching to see how much I could make this work with my personal reading challenge. The good news is that using audiobooks is giving me a good opportunity to make more effective use of my time. Now, I’m listening to a favorite (Stephen King’s It) without compromising my reading time I’d prefer to spend on other books (like the imposing Harlan Ellison anthology that has made my nightstand its new home). Instead of watching yet another episode of something stupid (like Spongebob Squarepants or iCarly) on tv while I fold laundry, clean my room, or do a dozen other menial things that require activity without brain power, I am enjoying taking in something that challenges me on an entirely different level.

The more I read, or the more I listen to stories, the more I realize I’m picking out the little things that make the story work, or the niggling little details that irk me. Yesterday, somewhere between folding jeans and putting them away, I re-wound the story to make sure I really heard multiple unnecessary adjectives creep into the work of The Master. 😉

For those who seek to refine their craft and push their abilities, I highly recommend using audiobooks to make the most of the time that’s available to you. They can be used to fill the holes in the day during the daily commute, during household chores when the tv would be the only available companion, or when doing the grocery shopping. Don’t underestimate the serenity that results from tuning out the world and indulging in a developmental pleasure like reading. This also gives me “free” time to read things that aren’t on the top of my reading list without sacrificing my goals. If nothing else, the extra time and the freedom to expand into unfamiliar territory that it allows me is worth what I spend a month on my subscription.

Audiobooks are available at most libraries, can be found at bookstores (though they are priced at roughly the same price as hardback books), used bookstores, online through various booksellers and media providers like iTunes or, and some e-readers also feature a text-to-speech on some books, allowing you to listen to texts in a (comically) robotic voice. I recommend trying the free or nearly free options first to see if you’ll benefit from ingesting your stories through your ears. I’ll take a moment to review my dealer of choice ( this weekend or early next week. Until then, happy reading!

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  1. July 11, 2012 at 6:44 pm

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