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06 January 2014 @ 10:49 am
Last spring, I purchased an iPad, not really sure if I would use it much, but curious to try. At first, it didn't really fit into my tech use, but I've gradually moved to it for most of my solo TV/movie watching, which often looks like laying in bed and watching an episode of TV before going to sleep, which feels more or less fine to me, though I miss reading and would like to add more of that into my entertainment mix.

A big hurdle I have to reading more is regularly finding books I'm really excited to read and that are the right mix of engaging and interesting without being too much work; I like the idea of reading hard books, but in reality, I get bogged down in them and stop reading at all. If you have recommendations for lively, entertaining books of any genre, I'll happily take them. Also, I am not in a routine of going to the library, so I finish the books I have and then fail to refresh my supply for way too long.

The other thing I've noticed about the iPad is that it has largely replaced my laptop for internet browsing .... which would be okay if it were equally easy to type on the iPad, but it's not. So this means that I comment less on other people's posts, and when I do comment, my comments are shorter. I also find that I'm posting less in my own social media. As far as I'm concerned, the whole point of the internet is to help people learn from each other and connect with one another, so I really don't like this, and it might wind up being the reason I eventually give up the iPad in order to move myself back into using a laptop more regularly.

For now, I'm experimenting with posting a little more often in general, to see what part intention plays.
I'm feeling: chipperchipper
Will O'the Wispwotw on January 6th, 2014 04:01 pm (UTC)
It's very hard to know what books other people will like, so this might or might not be useful but:

For light, lively, entertaining, undemanding, falling-asleep books, I don't think you can beat Trollope. And it pays to like Trollope, because his novels are all free and there are over 60 of them, so he'll keep you busy a long time.

Start with Barchester Towers. It's the second in a series of six, but the first in the series (The Warden) isn't nearly as good, and it's absolutely unnecessary to read it first.
Katefenicedautun on January 6th, 2014 04:43 pm (UTC)
If you find that online reading (Kindle, Kindle app, etc) work for you, try the BPL online library. I've been using that very successfully for the last year, and you check stuff out and then it just disappears (and you can check it out again) after a period of time. (Quick tip, if you use a Kindle and keep the wireless off, you can keep the books until you turn the wireless back on.)
pir on January 6th, 2014 05:30 pm (UTC)
Don't know if it's something you want for yours but there are keyboard cases/covers for the iPad that will also hold it at a good viewing angle for watching tv... I've seen friends use them but don't know any specifics since I don't use iOS devices.
Blue Gargantuabluegargantua on January 6th, 2014 05:36 pm (UTC)

Reading -- you can get a Kindle app for your iPad and do your reading on it. If you don't like Kindle, I'm sure there are other e-readers you can get (for free).

Writing -- You can get a wireless keyboard and it will connect with your ipad. Makes typing much easier although you do have to steady the iPad and in bad it's a bit trickier.

Will O'the Wispwotw on January 6th, 2014 05:54 pm (UTC)
Yes---I think the Kindle App is particularly nice for reading --- plus, of course, there are all those free e-books.
lazyzlazyz on January 6th, 2014 05:51 pm (UTC)

Louise Erdrich, one of my favorite story tellers
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Will O'the Wispwotw on January 6th, 2014 08:28 pm (UTC)
Several thumbs up for Edith Wharton, especially The Age of Innocence. When I read it, I kept thinking it must have been the "Mad Men" of its time ---- a story set in a time four or five decades before it was written, with the characters trapped in the mores of their time, somehow unable to imagine that there might be better ways to live, and where you can sense that Ms Wharton is on the one hand letting them be true to themselves but on the other hand wanting desperately to reach back through the decades and shake some sense into them. And it's a great story.
Will O'the Wispwotw on January 6th, 2014 08:35 pm (UTC)
A couple random others (both very light):

Lightning Rods is a total hoot.

I started Zuleika Dobson several times and always stopped after the first few pages because it seemed kinda tedious --- but kept coming back since so many people love it so much. I finally broke through the barrier and discovered that from about page 4 on, the tediousness is totally displaced by hilarity.

blk: computerblk on January 6th, 2014 09:33 pm (UTC)
Aha! I am interested in this post because this is exactly the dilemma I have pondered WRT getting a tablet for my next "laptop." I do want something smaller and more portable (and something I could use to play with nifty mobile apps, as I have nothing), but I also value typing and interaction. Have you considered getting an external keyboard, and if so, what about that did or didn't work for you?
ruthless compassion: martini handsaroraborealis on January 6th, 2014 09:39 pm (UTC)
I have thought about trying an external keyboard, but I haven't done so, yet, because it's hard for me to imagine it working better than a laptop as far as lounging on the sofa or in bed to type goes (which is mostly what I do at home). I know there are frames to hold the keyboard and the ipad at useful angles, but I'm not sure why this would be better for me than a laptop (and so I'm uninspired to try it).
blkblk on January 7th, 2014 02:43 am (UTC)
Hrm, good points there. Likewise, I have too many things in mind where a laptop is distinctly better than a tablet (which is the main reason I haven't acquired any form of tablet yet). Thanks for the thoughts.

WRT books, I just briefly reviewed three I've read and liked recently in my latest LJ. :)

Edited at 2014-01-07 02:44 am (UTC)
moria923 on January 6th, 2014 11:48 pm (UTC)
I think a lot of the reason many adults like YA lit is that good YA authors know how to blend interesting plots and characters and thought-provoking themes, but in a way that's not a lot of work to read. My favorite author for this is Nancy Werlin; try "The Killer's Cousin", "Locked Inside" or "Extraordinary".
bison need inbbbsg on January 8th, 2014 02:30 pm (UTC)
when I'm in a funk wrt reading I tend to go for complete brain candy. I found the Cat Star Chronicles very useful for this. sparkymonster might still have the first few as I passed them on to her when I was done.
DancingWolfGrrl: booksdancingwolfgrrl on January 8th, 2014 06:31 pm (UTC)
Books! Have you read Gail Carriger yet? It's fun and funny steampunk fantasy with feminist overtones. Similarly, I'm finishing Ellen Kushner's Privilege of the Sword right now, which includes both queer characters and a spunky (and reluctantly-cross-dressing) female main character.
Ellen: at workkeyne on January 9th, 2014 03:06 am (UTC)
I sympathize -- I've been finding that the more I rely on iDevices to check my mail, the further and further I get behind on actually responding to and filing email. I'm trying to consciously use my laptop more often just to keep up!