I got my first eReader around 12 years ago. It only lasted a couple of years and then needed replacing. But the one I have now, I’ve had since then, almost ten years. The poor thing should be in a retirement home for bewildered gadgets by now.
What do I use it for?
I play games: An eReader is great for playing games on but still looking busy. You’re playing truant really but everyone leaves you alone in case you’re doing something important. What games do I play? Nothing modern – no ‘call of’ anything or ‘squid’ something… I keep it simple.
Woodblock game – it’s similar to Tetris. The thing I really like is being able to change the background, so I can have a wintery scene with snowflakes coming gently down, or a very therapeutic green leafy scene with raindrops trickling down my screen. Love it! Great for hypnotizing me into another world where sudden ideas come out of the blue.
Spider solitaire – I think my win rate is something like 6% – I mean I’m absolutely terrible at it. But it’s great for killing time waiting for something or someone.
I don’t stream anything, I don’t listen to podcasts or even music on my eReader, don’t even have social media or my emails on there. But I could…
My favourite thing about my eReader is Evernote. It’s a note-making app. I very, very rarely go out and about without at least one notebook with me. Though that is a good way to acquire new notebooks – I’m out in the big wide world (at least twice a year, just to keep my hand in) and realise I ‘need’ to buy one because I haven’t brought one with me. It’s not an option or an extravagance…honest! I sometimes need to make a note of something that has either just caught my attention or something I’ve just thought of – so on it goes to Evernote, which syncs with my computer once I return to base. Here is an eclectic array of notes I have on Evernote:
- Rose Petals and White Lace (next Dottie book) – William gets demoted and chastised for his ‘mishandling’ of the Parfitt case which resulted in Gervase Parfitt ***************** (spoiler alert! Sorry, you’re not allowed to read that in case you haven’t read the others!)
- Story Idea – A woman who works in a big house as a companion or governess, comes out of an upstairs room at night and bumps into a man in a mask and a cape. He smiles and bows and puts a finger to his lips, saying, ‘Shh! I’m a secret agent on a mission!’ She laughs, assumes he is a guest at the party downstairs that evening. She says something like, ‘Why sir, your secret is safe with me, I shall never betray you.’ He could then laugh and present her with a rose, ‘A token of my deep appreciation,’ or maybe (even better!) he could say ‘perhaps this rose will buy your silence.’ Anyway, he compliments her eyes or something. And after these sexy pleasantries are over, he goes back downstairs and she returns to her room. And in the morning discovers there has been a jewel robbery!!!! Or a murder????
- Haiku – from Feb 2019 (as I said, I’ve had my eReader almost ten years btw, some of these notes go back a long way) February’s here/Green shoots promise the/end of winter’s icy hold
- My daughter, talking in her sleep when we were on holiday, ‘That comment sounds pretty cool!’ I thought it was an odd thing to say. I asked her about it in the morning, she had no idea what it related to.
- Exclamations of the 1930s (gleaned from Agatha Christie and Patricia Wentworth’s books of that era): ‘Oh my hat!’ ‘What the devil…?’ ‘So-and-so can go hang as far as I’m concerned’, ‘Oh my word!’ ‘That’s frightful!’ ‘Blast it!’ etc. I try to use one or two of these from time to time – they are so ‘of their era’ that I think they lend a bit of local colour.
- Philamot: According to my Patricia Wentworth book, The Rolling Stone, a fashionable colour either late 1800s or early 1900s was Philamot (lovely word) from the French feuille morte meaning dead leaves. (a kind of beigey fawn)
- Minette Walters’ The Ice House: I noted, “watching this again after many years, I’m struck by the similarity between the ice house in this and the Neolithic tombs of Skara Brae and other Orkney sites. What if a landed family discover their ice house is not as usual 300 or 400 years old, but three or four thousand years old…?”
- Fab quote from TV series Endeavour: ‘Don’t let him worry you, ‘cos his sort’s nowt a pound and sh*t’s tuppence, as my old gran used to say. Northerner.’ (that was Fred Thursday talking to Morse… Love that quote, it made me spit my coffee all over myself.)
- Standard issue firearm for British army for both world wars was the Webley mark IV revolver, taking a .38 calibre bullet. It remained in service until 1963.
- And this one from 2014: if a person is standing when they are shot dead from the front, they always fall and land with one leg crossed over the other at the ankle – this is known as ‘dead man’s fall’. (I think I used this in Scotch Mist…)
Oh yes – I also have books on my eReader! You were probably beginning to wonder. To date I have purchased around 700 eBooks, though my preference is for paperbacks. With eBooks I very often forget I have them on the reader. I only find out when I go to buy them, and Amazon smiles, shakes its head, and says’ You’ve already got that one, you eejit!’
Usually, if an author is new to me, I ‘try’ the eBook as a kind of taster. If I like it I will then – obviously – buy more of their books, but if I really love it, I will swap to paperbacks. I get a lot more out of a paperback, I seem to find it easier to immerse myself in the story whereas reading an eBook can sometimes (for me) feel like it all happens on the surface and I don’t truly ‘lose myself’ in the plot.
What about you? Do you read eBooks? Do you have a dedicated eReader or read books on your phone, tablet or desktop computer? Or are you strictly ‘real’ book all the way? Do please let me know!