Author of OUTBACK LOVE a contemporary romance novel set in Australia, JETTING AWAY a short story prequel to OUTBACK LOVE, MOON OVER MADNESS a paranormal romantic comedy and BAYOU BLUES AND OTHER SORROWS a collection of short stories and poems about life and love. All are available online at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Apple, Sony, Diesel and Kobo. On Twitter @TeriHeyer

Friday, February 10, 2012

Me and My Kindle: A Romance

Now let me start by explaining that I live in the South. Some people might say we "don' talk right." For instance, instead of saying "my family and I" we say "me and mine." So I'm telling you straight out that "me and my" is grammatically correct. That said, I have tale to tell, a romance of sorts, a romance of the very best kind.

Before digressing further I need to get to the heart of the story. I'm having a right fine, beautiful romance with my Kindle. It started out a little rocky at first. I'm a die-hard reader, addicted to books and all that entails. In fact, I'm a book hoarder. I have shelves full of books, boxes of books, books in closets, books under my bed, books in stacks here and there throughout my house. Yep, a book lover and hoarder.

So right off the bat I resisted the idea of an eReader. In fact, I swore up and down that I'd never read an ebook. Never. Ever. A writer friend of mine, Michele Bardsley, yeah, that Michele Bardsley of paranormal comedy fame, first started talking about ebooks years ago. I said, "Yeah, yeah, okay." But behind her back I said, "No way. I'll never read an ebook. I need to hold that hardback or paperback in my hands. I need to run my fingers across the printed page. I need to smell the paper and the printer's ink in a new book. I need to smell the mustiness of an old well-read book." Nope, no ebooks, ever.

At the time I lived in Las Vegas of all places and belonged to both the Cactus Rose Chapter of RWA and my very own co-founded writers' group, Desert Rogues. Talking to our little group of Desert Rogues, of which Michele was a member, she insisted that ebooks were the books of the future. No, no, no, I screamed in my head.

Now fast forward a number of years and I'm back living in the South, in the part of Florida called the Panhandle, which all of us here know is really Lower Alabama. At this point I've already discovered Amazon, due to another Desert Rogues BFF, Ruth Kerce, yeah, that Ruth D. Kerce who writes for Ellora's Cave, Changling Press and her very own indie ePubbed sensual short stories.

Okay, like I said, Ruth introduced me to Amazon, so I was already hooked on buying books from there. It's a great place for a book addict to shop, because I could look at books and place orders all night long if I wanted and often did. Yes, I could literally shop 'til I dropped.

Now one day, or was it one night? I don't rightly remember. Anyway, I saw the ad for the Kindle. An eReader? No way! But then I got to thinking. Could I really have one small device that held hundreds, if not thousands, of my very favorite books? I could tuck the Kindle into my purse and take it with me everywhere. Everywhere? You're darn tootin'.

I got to thinking. This could be a good thing. A really good thing. Then the clincher was all those free classic ebooks that Amazon was offering. As an English major, someone who cut their teeth on the classics as a small child, well, heck, this was a marriage made in heaven.

Still hesitant, I didn't give in to the first generation Kindle. No, I waited and dreamed and waited some more. When the second generation Kindle came around I couldn't take it any more. "What do you want for your birthday?" That was my husband asking. "A Kindle," I replied. "Huh?" My husband's not a reader (except for science magazines and the Internet). So he said, "Huh? Why would you want a Kindle?"

Well, I got that Kindle for my birthday and instantly fell in love. I started filling it up with all my favorite classics, like Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, Pride and Prejudice, War and Peace, Anna Karenina, Far From the Madding Crowd, The Last of the Mohicans, Riders of the Purple Sage, Little Women, Madam Bovary, The Three Musketeers, The Age of Innocence, The House of Mirth, Swiss Family Robinson, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Vanity Fair, I could go on and on.

Suffice to say that I did load up my Kindle with every classic favorite and all those classics I always wanted to read, but never got a chance to do so. So began a lengthy romance which lasted well into the wee hours most nights. I'd wake up in the morning blurry eyed, but happy as a lark.

When the third generation Kindle 3G (Keyboard) came out, I had to upgrade. My second generation Kindle was having problems, maybe from overuse? So it was an easy matter to send the second gen. back and get the third gen. With my new Kindle the romance blossomed and grew to enormous proportions.

I don't go anywhere without my Kindle love.  I've added hundreds of contemporary romances, historical romances, romantic suspense, time travel, westerns and a smattering of everything else. I love history (I was going for a double major of English and History, but didn't quite finish the History part). Anyway, I've added history books about the American Revolution and Civil War, the fall of Rome, histories of Britain, Europe, the Middle East, you name it. Oh, the romance is building.

Yes, I'm not embarrassed to say "I love my Kindle." Yep, I really do. It doesn't matter what mood I'm in, melancholy or elated or something in between, there's always a book or books in my Kindle that will fit the bill. I can switch from one book to another with just a few clicks. What can be better than that?

Now don't get me wrong. I still love hardbacks and paperbacks. I'm not about to give away a single book (although my husband would probably like for me to do just that). I still have bookshelves full of books, boxes of books, books in my closets, books under my bed, books in stacks here and there around the house. I even have duplicates of some of my favorites--classics in both paperback and on my Kindle.

My Kindle Keyboard, currently the love of my life (don't tell my husband that), is a bit battered. We all age, don't we? It doesn't help that my dog, Dude, during his puppy days (was it only a year ago?) chomped down on my  Kindle and left his puppy teethmarks in the case. He also left his marks in the cover which, thankfully, protected the Kindle from further harm. So my Kindle and its case are a bit battered, but I love it just the same. Inside is a wonderful world of books--a virtual world of love, romance, dreams, adventures, travels and more.

At Christmas time I guiltily looked at the Kindle Touch and the Kindle Fire with longing in my heart. I came so close to buying one of them, a gift from Santa, of course. But I didn't do it. How could I? My Kindle Keyboard is well-loved and battered, but it's still breathing (hey, I swear it's alive). So I'll stick to my Kindle love, 'til death do we part. Maybe, just maybe, I'll sneak a Kindle Fire into the household and use it to read just some of my favorite books, every now and then mind you, not all the time. But whatever you do, don't tell my Kindle Keyboard what I'm thinking. This is a romance that needs to go on and on.

3 comments:

  1. Great post Teri! I now feel the need to confess that I too am a hoarder of books. There I said it and I love it!!

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  2. Thanks, Teri, for your confession. Very brave of you to admit to a romantic adventure...Now I know why you always look so happy!

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