I love to read. I came out of the womb wanting books. I can’t even remember a time when I couldn’t read. Anyway, if you’re like me, you’re in constant pursuit of the next book (or twelve) that you want to read. So, I thought I’d share a few little tips on getting more books and other reader-ish things you might enjoy.
Used bookstore at your local library. When I discovered that my local library also has a used bookstore I thought I’d died and gone to reader heaven. Most hardbacks at 50 cents and paperback are four for a dollar. Really not or recent hardbacks can be as expensive as two or three bucks. But I’ve been known to take five bucks to the library used bookstore and walk out with 10 books. Check and see if your local library has a used bookstore.
Friend book swap. If you have other friends who are readers you could set up a book swap. You could each buy a book that all of you want to read and then pass them around. Have your own little lending library.
Online lending library. The Open Library is an online lending library that allows you to borrow eBooks from a growing collection of mainly 20th Century titles available now. Each title can be borrowed by one patron at once, and you can read it in a web browser or in Adobe Digital Editions as a PDF or ePub. I did check their website and did a search on a favorite author – they had every title of his. So this is a real find.
Project Gutenberg. The Project Gutenberg site offers mostly classics (public domain) books which you can download for free. They offer over 45,000 free ebooks in pdf, epub and kindle formats. No fee or registration is required.
Free audio books. There are several sites that offer a one-month free trial during which you can get free audio books. However, Books Should Be Free offers free books – period. Like Project Gutenberg the books are classics and in the public domain.
Kindle apps. A lot of people may think that in order to read a Kindle book they must have a Kindle. However, Amazon offers free apps for phone, tablet, laptop and pc which you can download and read your Kindle books with.
Keep a running list of the books you’ve read. The reader tracker is an app that you can download for your iPhone, iPod or iPad. Apparently it’s free right now for a limited time. You can also set up lists at Goodreads that will keep track of all the books you’ve read, want to read and do reviews as well.
Hard time keeping your paperback open to the right page? Use a bullclip to tame those pages.
Want a laptop reading desk? See if you can find an old breakfast tray at the local thrift store. This one is a lot like the one I found for a couple bucks and it even has a drink holder.
Offer to become beta reader. If you happen to know any authors, or frequent author websites you can volunteer to become a beta reader. Beta readers agree to read one or more drafts of a novel and then give feedback. The cool thing about this is that you can help an author polish and refine her work, and also be privy to the book before publication. With the exception of the really famous authors out there, most writers would be thrilled to have people volunteer to be a beta.
What about you – have any tricks or tips for readers? Feel free to share them in the comments below.