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The mission of Pens & Pages Writers Guild is to facilitate and encourage writers of all genres, to share resources and tips about the writing process and, most of all, to provide a positive and productive forum that will encourage and support each writer in his or her creative endeavors.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

"Forget and forgive. This is not difficult when properly understood. It means forget inconvenient duties, then forgive yourself for forgetting. By rigid practice and stern determination, it comes easy."
----Mark Twain

I forgot to blog last week, and have just now remembered. What I want to talk about is audiobooks, which have been around for years, but haven't really been "on my radar" until recently. Recently, I bought an MP3 player (I may be the last person my age to do so), and besides music, it will play audiobooks, and both the Friona and Clovis library have added downloadable audiobooks to their repertoire of services.

My reading time, as all of my free time, has been curtailed by the kids' arrival, and listening to auidiobooks gives me a chance to "read" while also doing housework, or cooking.

I find it both satisfying, and unsatisfying. I am getting more "reading" done, including some classics, like Great Expectations (and a lot more junk food, like Twilight and some werewolf book I don't remember the name of). On the other hand, listening to a book doesn't allow for the re-reading and relishing of good passages, or flipping back to get things straight. The voice that is reading also affects my enjoyment a lot. Most of them seem to be quite mediocre in that respect.

What I really can't decide is whether listening to an audiobook counts as reading a book. Can I legitimately claim to have read Great Expectations, or is listening to the (unabridged) audiobook along the same lines as watching the movie? It seems to straddle a line between the two, since while the listening is a passive form of enjoyment, as is watching, it is not an adaptation being listened to, but the work in its entirety.

What are your opinions?


fridarla19 said...

I definately think it counts, especially if it is the entire work. I like to be able to accomplish two things at once--like driving and listening, but I agree that it is more difficult to 're-read' something or to have time to jot down a particularly well-written phrase or passage. I just finished "Across Five Aprils" by Irene Hunt and I appreciate being able to get that done--it had been on my reading list for quite a while...

Nana said...

I agree that listening to the entire (unabridged) audio book counts as having "read" the book.
The mind is much more engaged in the actual literature than it is when watching a movie which is more than likely someone's adaptation.

MadeByAmanda said...

And of course listening to Dickens has whet my appetite to read (in hard copy!) some of his other works.