Nowadays, there are numerous options for reading, with ebooks and audiobooks being the new norm compared to physical books. However, personally, I prefer reading a physical book with pages I can turn and a copy that I can store on my shelf. Why do I choose to stay old-fashioned?
Is this all just pure nostalgia? Do I not enjoy multitasking? Do I hate myself and like carrying around several books in my bag instead of an e-reader?
My experience with books
Well, for all the questions above, the answer is: not quite. I pretty much grew up reading, like most of my fellow classmates, and that contributed heavily to my English proficiency and sense of imagination.
Growing up, physical books were still more popular than e-books, and I have a feeling that they still are since bookstores are still around and online stores haven’t killed off brick-and-mortar boutiques. Since I grew up reading physical books, it is indeed quite hard to let a habit die and completely switch over to digital alternatives.
I can’t use digital books without a sacrifice
I read and I absorb things, and I can’t do that with audiobooks. With e-books, I can at least read and absorb things in a way, but I can never properly do that with audiobooks. Without looking at an actual text, I can never remember the plot, characters, and so on, as I am usually focused on both the audio but looking to the outside world.
There is a thing about reading that puts me in a state where I just forget about the outside world and only focus on the world in the book.
E-books on the other hand, are like physical books, but there is also a sacrifice. I do not get the satisfying feel of a book that I love when I read and it just bugs me that I’m literally holding a tablet and swipe to turn the pages.
Also, screens also hurt my eyes, and though there are blue light glasses and E-ink displays to counter the eye problems, I find these as unnecessary to actually read a book and I don’t need to buy anything extra other than the actual book.
I do not really care about the weight of books, as I am never carrying more than what I want to carry when I walk around with my bag. At most, I only carry around one book that I’m reading so it isn’t really that heavy.
There is also the great look of books on your bookshelf that you don’t get with e-books or audiobooks, and that is a fact. My bookshelf is stocked with books ranging from academic subjects to science fiction. I also like that I physically own the book. With a digital copy, I might have bought it but if ever the platform hosting the book shuts down, I lose my digital copy. This gives me extra insurance that I keep the book… unless there is a fire… then there’s a problem. 🙁
All-in-all, old habits are hard to get rid of and despite the improvements in making digital books much more accessible and versatile, I hold strong on my stance on continuing my habit of reading physical books.
What are your thoughts? I’m curious to know!