The Importance of Physical Books

The importance of the books. The type you can touch or write in or put a bookmark in or see on a shelf.

Books are Still Important

Books have forever held an important part of my life.

They kept me occupied on long car journeys growing up, something to look forward to at lunchtimes in the school library. They were a route to discovering role-playing games and viewpoints from across the world.

They were something I shared with my grandma and much of my family. And a common point of reference for many a conversation.

They've helped with language learning and financial wisdom and soul searching.

The Usefulness of Digital Books

But one thing I don't like is stuff I don't need. Like the 1000+ books which I finished getting rid off just before Lockdown.

Which is where digital books come in handy. They don't take up space and you can have as many as you want without any shelves collapsing. And writing digital booklets is how I make my main income...

But...I've tried a kindle and never taken fully to it. The reading habit never stuck.

Partly from trying to reduce screen time. Partly I've never wanted to curl up with a Kindle. There are a few digital books I read and it comes with me on travels. But then it returns to a drawer until I discover it again a few months later

Instead I've developed a habit of listening to books, at least the non-fiction kind.

The Physical Kind

Physical books are harder to ignore, their presence in your mind reinforced by seeing them. Some seem to call out my name luring you with the secrets they hold.

More Reasons to Like Physical Books.

  • They can be held.
  • Older ones have a story of their own.
  • You can read them during the night when trying to get back to sleep and not wanting to use screens.
  • You can use physical bookmarks.
  • You can use lists of words you don't understand as a bookmark. And add to it as you read.
  • You get to browse places that sell books.
  • You can give a physical book as a gift. ¬†Which is harder to ignore.
  • Showing a physical book is different to showing a digital one.
  • You can write in physical books.
  • You can give them to charity.
  • They make good conversation starters.

Travelling Books

When I'm travelling I still take one or two books with me. Along with a kindle I rarely seem to use. Then I'll pick up more other places I go. Especially ones hard to get in the UK.

When I do some slow travel I will have another go at using digital books. But there's a good chance I'll end up reading a haphazard selection books from hostels, shops, market stalls and people I meet. Then left for others to enjoy. Or a blend of the two styles.

And so I find myself looking at a growing collection of books once again as Lockdown runs into Spring.

Finishing Up

What are you reasons for keeping books around?

Any tips for learning to enjoy E-books?

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Duncan is an aspiring creative nomad, who publishes random lists and tools for roleplaying games. Hobbies include salsa, games, books, podcasts, languages and history.
It varies. Probably in Europe