Embrace the Audiobooks, Friends

Since absolutely nothing of interest happened At The Office this week, I decided I’m going to write about audiobooks instead. It’s related because I listen to them… at the office.

I happen to be blessed with a job that is mostly mindless. Since that is the case, I get to listen to stuff while I work. Sometimes I listen to music, but mostly I listen to audiobooks. Do you have any idea how many audiobooks I go through in a month? My best guess is an average of five.

As a Book Person, this fills me with joy.

I also listen to audiobooks when I’m crocheting. I listened to the Complete Sherlock Holmes while crocheting various things. It was like 58 hours and some change. Read by Simon Vance, who is one of my favorite audiobook narrators.

I’ve been listening to audiobooks at work for about six years. I’ve had this job for five years, but before that, I had a job where I could listen to audiobooks, too.

It used to be, back when I first started listening, that people would consider listening to an audiobook “cheating”. I was always cautious about telling other book people that I had listened to the audiobook of whatever book we were talking about. They either didn’t care or they considered it cheating. I would say that it is likely these people never actually listened to an audiobook. If they had, they would know there is no cheating involved. My mind is just as active, just as engaged with the story, sometimes even more so. When I read, I live the story. I see the settings and the characters. The same thing happens when I listen to an audiobook. So as far as I’m concerned, if you listened to the audiobook version of the latest bestseller, you have still read the book. It’s the same story, just received differently.

Nowadays, people don’t say that as much. At least not to me and not lately. So I’ve become less cautious about it. I think this is because online streaming has made audiobooks more accessible. You no longer have to carry around a million cassette tapes or a thousand CDs. All you need is your phone. Or a web browser.

I would actually describe myself as a poly-book-formatist. Yeah, okay, I obviously made that up, but what I’m trying to say is that I don’t limit myself to any one format. I listen to audiobooks, I buy books on my Kindle, and I have at least a couple hundred paper books on my shelves at home. I love them all.

I would recommend audiobooks to anybody. Since I get to listen to so many, it really helps me keep my love of reading and books alive while still working a full-time job. They make me laugh, they make me cry, they make me want to scream in frustration, just like all books do.

“But wait,” I hear you saying. “If you’re such a book person, why don’t you just read more?”

If you were real, I would slap you. Fool!

I work eight hours a day. When I get home, I write. Haven’t you been reading this blog at all?? I’m a writer! I can’t write and work at the same time! I only get to write at work when I have no work to do. That happens sometimes, but not very often.

The thing is, I do read at home. I read all the books I have that aren’t in audio format. It takes me a lot longer because I don’t get to read for four hours. At work, I get to listen to about four hours of audio each day between answering phone calls and sending out faxes. At home, I get maybe a half an hour – an hour tops – unless it’s the weekend.

This is because I write. I’m working on my dang novel, yo. The thing about writing while also having a full-time job is that it doesn’t leave you very much time to read. It’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make to work on my story. I’m just dang lucky that I can use audiobooks to offset that a little bit.

In conclusion, I love audiobooks, I recommend them to one and all, and if anybody says it’s cheating, I will be sure to inform them that they are wrong.

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