Posted in Kindle

Book Recommendations During Lockdown


If you are a regular visitor of the social cataloging website “Goodreads”, then you are very well aware of their poor UI. Even after the 2013 acquisition by Amazon, the site still lacks personalization of feed and content discoverability of new books. If you login to Goodreads, chances are more that you will be transported to the old world of 2000’s website.

The listopia by Goodreads is pure gold. It has more than hundreds of recommendations for 100+ genres. But the biggest difficulty is to find the right one. Well, let me help you cut the chase.

During this lockdown, a lot of them have been asking how do you find time to read and where do you find the book recommendations. There is no better time than now to invest your time and energy towards reading a good book. Don’t worry! You might be a person who has never read a book before or is someone like me who cannot sleep without reading a minimum of 10 pages a day. Follow the steps given below, bookmark the webpage and keep it for your future reference.

  1. Visit “Goodreads” on Wikipedia
  2. Hop on to the “Winners” category
  3. Scroll down to your favorite genre and find the best book recommendations from each category.

If you further scroll down in the same page, you will find authors which have won Multiple Awards. It is helpful if you run out of all the book recommendations and are looking for something new.

Isn’t it very simple!

Header Photo by Darwin Vegher on Unsplash

Posted in Kindle

How To Remove Personal Documents Permanently From Your Kindle Device?


If you are a regular subscriber to periodicals, or are in the habit of reading too many PDF documents on your Kindle then it’s a known fact that even after you delete the documents, you can still see them in your Library.

A lot of forums on Google and Quora ask you to factory reset your Kindle. Sometimes people even believe that if they go to Calibre and connect their devices, they can get rid of these documents.

Well, I must say that, even if you do it, there are high chances that the documents still will be found in your Kindle device. But the fact is NONE OF THESE REALLY HELP BRUH!

What then could be the possible solution?

  • Login to Amazon (Depending on your country suffix the .in, .com or .uk)
  • Type this in your browser https://www.amazon.in/myk (Depending on your country suffix the .in, .com or .uk)
  • Manage Your Content & Devices > Content > Select “Docs” > Select the documents which you want to delete > Hit Delete
Snapshot of your Amazon Content Directory
  • Open your Kindle device > Connect Wi-Fi > Sync your Kindle

And you are done! Not only does this action help you delete documents, you can also get rid of your old e-Books lying in your Kindle as well.

Hope this article was helpful. Please leave your comments.

Header Photo by Vikas Pawar on Unsplash

Posted in Daily Prompts, Kindle

How Are Big Goals Achieved?


We have almost crossed half a year, and it’s time to have a quick look at our goals. Some of them would have started off 2020 with rosy resolutions on January 1, like reading x number of books a year, or hitting the gym three times a week etc.

How far have you all reached? If you have already halfway on your journey to achieve your resolutions then well done my pal! You are on the way to achieve glory.

If you ask me, last year I sucked at a lot of things and excelled in many more areas. This year the history repeated itself. Series of failures, followed by corrections in my own habits which led to success in achieving goals. I have to give some credit to Mr Brian Tracy here. Because without him, even this year my goals would have gone down the drain.

In his book, GOALS!: How To Get Everything You Want — Faster Than You Ever Thought Possible, Brian emphasized on a whole set of dos and dont’s. Out of everything, the only thing I remember is the following:

  1. Write your goals down
  2. Hold yourself accountable for them
  3. Believe in yourself and go after it.

I would like to add one more line here.

Never be hard on yourself.

While you are on your journey to achieve goals, there are times when your goals might wander off, you may lose focus. You might take some time to realise that you have strayed away, which is perfectly okay. By choosing to be kind on your own self, you are helping yourself to stick to your goals again. Being hard on yourself will only push you towards non-performing zone leading to anxiety, frustration and disappointment.

Whenever you want to achieve any goal/habit, you need to simply start making it a part of our lifestyle. Like if you want to remain fit for your whole life, starting off with 2 hours of gymming is a bad move. Instead, starting off with 10 – 15min of simple workouts could be a great starter. Once you make the 15-minute routine as a part of your daily lifestyle, you may now increase the interval from fifteen minutes to twenty-odd minutes. In this way, gradually over a period of time, there are chances of you not missing the gym and consistently meeting your fitness goals every day.

Similarly, if you want to inculcate reading as a habit in your life then start carrying a book everywhere. If you know you have to wait in a long queue or stand during your way to the office, then it’s time to open your book/kindle and start reading a few paragraphs. Remember what I said earlier, never jump into big steps immediately. Start small. Once your brain gets used to the fact of reading for two or three pages, you may now jump to a whole chapter. If you want to write 10 blogs a month, start by writing your first paragraph then another followed by a blog post in the first few weeks. Once you are familiar with the process, then you may gradually increase your posting frequency. Never set unrealistic expectations to spoil your fair chance of winning those rosy dreams you dreamt on January first.

It is important to remember that there will always be that initial discomfort when you are about to start a new routine, new habit, or do something completely out of your comfort zone. Acknowledge it. Note the discomfort in a diary and keep going with your goals until you achieve end results. Doing the same thing religiously for more than forty to fifty days will surely remap the neurological paths in your brains leading to better results. Consistency ultimately beats natural talent. Never compare your goals with others or your pace with other people around you. Your only competitor should be you, yourself!

Tell me how do you plan to work on your goals in the coming weeks. I am excited to know.

Header Photo by Estée Janssens on Unsplash

Posted in Daily Prompts, Kindle

How an Indian Developed A Top Notch FOSS For Readers Across The World


Necessity is the mother of all inventions.

sony e reader
Sony E-Readers

If I were to ask you to name one device to read books right now, your answer would be Amazon Kindle or Kobo. But little do we all know that way before Amazon came and dominated the e-Reader market, Sony was the pioneer in it.

Sony ruled the e-reader market with its flagship products like Sony PRS T1, T2, RS350 etc. In fact, Sony was the first company in the world to launch the world’s first commercial e-reader back in 2006.

They called their cute e-readers as PRS [Portable Reader System]. These devices had to be loaded with books purchased by Sony eBook library available in countries like US, UK, Japan, Germany etc. These devices were still evolving and were a far fetched dream for Indians who were sniffing books on the roadside second hand book-wallah’s or visiting prestigious book stores in their cities to buy heavy paperbacks. I too was one amongst them. I still have vague memories of visiting those narrow lanes of Avenue Road in Bangalore to buy all those Indie Novels at half-price. Imagining the thought of having a personal library of my own, with racks and racks of books stacked one against another was just a daydream. It was only in 2018, after reading in actual Kindle Oasis borrowed from my good old friend Krishnan, I was able to finally decide on purchase of a device which was purely meant only for reading.

Almost everyone who has had Kindle App on their iPads or phones or ones who have actually gone ahead and bought an actual e-Reader all go through one common problem. The device supporting only specific formats of books only for reading. A pdf, or.docx document can be easily read on iPad or laptop but try that on an e-Reader, the small grey-scale screen turns you off. This restricts any reader from consuming a ton of books every month. Not everyone can afford every book from e-book stores. To solve this million-dollar problem, a guy who was studying at the California Institute of Technology [CalTech] wrote a small software called libprs500. The objective of this software was to convert the existing file into a readable format for an e-Reader. This young man by the name Kovid Goyal went a step ahead and created a graphical user interface for this software which is now being called Calibre. The word “libre” in Calibre stands for freedom.

Readers who had hundred of e-books on their computers now found a new way to transfer them to their expensive e-Readers and start reading them just like any other e-Book. All that was made possible by Calibre – the new open-source e-book management suite free for all to modify and convert all sorts of e-book formats to files which were compatible with their respective e-reading devices. Thousands of people who now have books downloaded from Telegram and other DRM free portals are now able to convert the books and read seamlessly on their reading devices. Kovid’s contribution has benefited readers across the world and it is now one of the top 50 must-have Softwares for all book-readers.

How can a person who consumes digital books benefit from Calibre?

Calibre nearly does everything that an ordinary reader would want to extract the last bit of their expensive e-readers.

  1. Helps you manage your dozens of books that you had shoved in your small e-reader [We all know how clumsy it becomes to start dragging and removing books one by one on any e-reader]
  2. The software can be used offline as well.
  3. Calibre can be used to fetch news from over 1500 authentic news sources which include more than 10 National News dailies from India and several hundred from across the world. This is very helpful for someone who wants their papers to be delivered to their Kindle every day at 6AM.
  4. It’s a one-stop software which will help view any e-book in pdf, kpx, .mobi, .epub and many more formats.
  5. Not just newspapers, you can also download content from magazines available on the net. Quite relieving if you are willing to consume as much content as possible without spending much money.
  6. You can even collate all the important RSS syndications, make your own recipe and schedule it every day for a particular time to be delivered to your Kindle.
  7. You can edit metadata of books in your collection and be a librarian yourself.

What started as a project during his free-time in Caltech has now completed ten long years. By far, everyone who has used Calibre agrees to the fact that the UI sucks but it is one of the top-notch Free or Open Source Software [FOSS] available in the market.

No wonder, the software has won hearts from more than 200+ countries. Out of 236 countries where Calibre is available, Spain, USA and Germany are the top three consumers of this software.

The Economist, The Hindu, NewYorker Magazine are the top three custom news sources accessed by readers across the world via Calibre. Being open-source software, one can easily modify the software as per their needs. For a market like e-books, where huge corporations like Amazon, Barnes & Noble monopolized the purchase rates of books, Kovid’s Calibre broke the monopoly.

He freed readers to access whatever they like and read however they wish to. Calibre had something for every kind of reader. Even for non-book savvy, it made a customized wizard which let them configure news and make it automated to be sent to their devices every day.

If you connect your Kindle email address to Calibre, then rest assured that you will get all the news updated regularly on a daily basis delivered to your Kindle at the desired time.

Even while commuting or standing in a long queue, this feature makes your life sorted as you are constantly accompanied by information wherever you go.

Isn’t it time to take a minute to appreciate the inventor of this brilliant software created by an Indian? Some might still grumble that the UI sucks and the website still follow the old-school methodology of presenting its manual. But who cares? As long as you are able to manage your e-books in whatever format seamlessly without tampering your private information, it’s okay. Calibre is known to be very transparent and the software does not store any of your personal data.

In a world full of money-making, greedy, publisher friendly market, Calibre has surely become a boon. It has opened doors to all those readers who want to read anywhere and anyhow. I have seen hundreds of students who are now using Calibre to consume knowledge every day without even spending a single penny. Knowledge is available across the world, but are the corporations making it accessible to common readers was a big debate for many years. We are glad someone like Kovid came forward to address this issue.

To know more about Kovid Goyal and his other projects you may visit his old website.

To download Calibre for your systems or mobile phones you may click here.

Header Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash
Posted in Daily Prompts, Kindle

Why I Ditched Reading Self Help Books?


Disclaimer: If you are a huge fan of Sadhguru, Osho, Gaur Gopal Das, Robin Sharma then please do not read any further. There is nothing that would kindle your interests.

“Success is what you do….” – said some author in some book which I don’t even remember now. Half of the self-help material which I consumed voraciously over the past few years are now vaporized completely from my brains. All that I now remember is that “Never Ever Give Up… Keep Going”. Simple, straight and direct-to-my-brain!

As a book worm, one of the most common questions asked by your fellow book-nerds is “What’s your favourite genre?”. Three years back, I would excitedly square my shoulders and say “Self-Help & Motivational Books”. Well, that was me about 3 years back.

After reading around dozens of self-help books, all the way from Robin Sharma to Ramakrishna Mission, all I found was each one beats around the bush to say the same old thing. As one of my good old Goodreads friend said “All self-help books are nothing but pure word play”.

Since the day, I started reading IT by Stephen King, I have ditched the whole self-help category and have embraced thriller, horror, supernatural and non-fiction category. I am not even regretting my decision now.

How did this transformation happen? In the year 2018, I was completely reading a series of self-help books in order to maintain my peace of mind. As I was reading these books, there came a point when my brain completely stopped reacting to all those flowery words like “Discipline, Dedication, Motivation, Arise, Awake..etc etc”. It was then I started searching for that one book which would kick start my desire to consume books again. My mind started looking out for a different kind of stimulation. I tried varieties of self-help books until I gave up and turned to Mr.King accidentally. Since then, there is no turning back. The King of Horror for sure has his way of drawing readers and make them addicted.

My first book by King was, “On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft” by Stephen King. It stole my heart. I highly recommend this book for everyone who wants to be a writer someday in their life. After this book, I then moved on to autobiographies, Kannada short stories, books on investing, history and Indian polity, International relations etc.

Surprisingly the old NCERT textbooks started seeming very interesting to me. Especially the literature textbooks. What was drudgery to study and pass marks now seemed like excellent companions and guides to life. The poems which we had to study with a red eye, now made so much sense.

Having said that, do I completely despise the whole self-help genre? Hell no. Who is going to save my sleep after reading a hundred pages of Stephen King?? Who is going to make me feel happy when the whole world is collapsing around me? Self-help has now become like a pickle. I go and infer only those parts which are pragmatic to my lifestyle. Just because an author says wake up at 4AM and run till 7AM, I won’t be doing it. Why? If I look at my own routine, I am a night owl. I am highly productive only after the sun sets down and the lunar clock starts ticking.

One of the biggest advice I would like to give to my younger self is to not completely rely on one genre. That’s a terrible mistake I did. As readers, we need to have a more open view of our whole world. We need to read all sorts of books. The good, bad, ugly, intolerable, mind-numbing and torturous ones too. That is when you will truly decipher what truly interests your grey cells and what does not. Exploring other genres has definitely made my reading journey invigorating. I can clearly see how my point of view about the basic human mind has started to shift.

Too much horror or too much non-fiction is also never good. One needs to maintain an ideal balance of all genres in order to develop his purview about society. Human beings come in all shapes, sizes, and from a variety of backgrounds. Stories are nothing but a compendium to the psyche of society. The characters, no matter how gruesome, scary, nerve-racking they are, we have to understand that they are not solely a figment of the one’s imagination. In some or the other part of the world, we do find psychopaths willing to turn Stephen King’s words into reality. There is no guarantee that Hannibal Lecter was purely a work of fiction. Who knows, what inspired Thomas Harris to come up with such kind of sick, and pure ingenious of a character?

That is why my suggestion to my fellow readers is that read what is edible by your brains. Read what nourishes your soul. Just because thousands of readers have voted a book five star does not mean it is tailor-made for you. Your taste could be very different from what your girlfriend/wife or the next-door neighbour reads. Take your time… and read slowly. When you mindfully think about the book after having finished it, ask yourself “Did this book make me happy? How do I feel”. If you feel terrible, then its time to ditch the book/genre/author. Life is too short to bear the torture of something which your brain hates to the core.

I am now curious to know what are you reading during this lockdown? Have you signed up for any challenges yet? If not, check these cool challenges hosted by Goodreads. In case you want to go by the reader’s choice then here is the list for you. In case you want to start your own 2020 Reading Challenge then here is something you would love to participate. Work, sleep, waste time, cook food, put your baby to sleep, go for a walk…. above all spend at least 5 minutes every day reading a few lines. It surely has some astounding benefits in the long run.

Header Photo by  Lacie Slezak on Unsplash

Posted in Daily Prompts, Kindle

Never Judge A Book By It’s Ratings On Goodreads


With my faded pyjamas and legs on top of the study table, I was comfortably sunk in my own world of books when my friend called me. After the usual lockdown Q&A, she said “I have always been wanting to read books. How do I choose?”

Here is my simple and straight forward answer.

Never judge a book by its cover + it’s ratings on Goodreads

Year after year, after signing up for book reading challenges hosted by Goodreads. I am happy that I manage to achieve  my book reading goals every year. I religiously devote a minimum of ten-twenty minutes every night before my eyes give up and I start yawning like a crocodile.

Coming to the main point of not getting carried away by the online ratings, I wish to say that ratings on Goodreads can be highly misleading. Take, for example, Don Quixote – One of the most important books rated by all leading magazines every year. Like any typical reader, I G.O.O.G.L.E.’d – saw the ratings and purchased a copy of it, only to be disappointed right after the first few pages.

book review don quixoteNow if you were to ask me about Don Quixote, I have to say that this book is a sleeping pill. [No offence to people who love Don Quixote]. There were days when no doctor in Bangalore could put me to sleep except Don Quixote. With its too chivalrous write-up and slow narration, it would make me fall asleep in just 3 minutes. Soon after this, I picked up several books by Chethan Bhagat, Robin Sharma and many more authors only to be disappointed by the rating given by readers on Goodreads.

There are plenty of underrated books in this Universe, waiting for you to pick them up and read them end to end. But due to the bias of ratings that we see on online sources, we end up choosing hyped books. Life is too short to waste time on books which serve no purpose. The next time you pick a book, please feel free to dump it right then and there if the book doesn’t kindle your interest further. Not every book in this world [deemed as bestseller] would entertain you. Do not let the boredom set in, and make you abandon the habit of reading books permanently.

First, decide what kind of stories do you really love to hear/read? Based on that, you can then choose books based on their plots given online and then choose them for reading further.

Happy Reading!

Header Pic Courtesy: Photo by Nemichandra Hombannavar on Unsplash

Posted in Daily Prompts, Kindle

My Experience With Audible by Amazon


For those of you looking for a short & crisp review of Audible here you go:

7

8

9

If you are someone who just wanted the gist of the whole article then yes the article just ended with the last image. You may now go and catch up with your Netflix show or bore yourself with any other article on the net.

But, if you are someone who wants to read the long-form article and make me happy then here you go with the longer version of my  experience with Audible.

“…. This is Audible… The Compound Effect…Multiply Your Success One Simple Step At A Time by Darren Hardy…” said the deep voice from the newly installed “Audible” app by Amazon.

I woke up at 5:45am in my hotel room and finished my ablution to get ready for my yoga session when I was reminded of the fact that I had downloaded this new app called Audible by Amazon right when my Indigo flight was about to take off. After my shower, while my daily dose of black coffee was ready to be brewed in the kettle, I was just scrolling up and down the app to just get a hang of it.

I had read somewhere that either you can purchase the audiobooks directly from the app/Amazon website or you could download one book per month [Free-Of-Cost] as a credit from the audible library. Without delaying a second, my mind chose the second option of downloading one book on credit. After all, we are Indians and we are like this only. We want to see how good an app fits our expectations by fully exploiting all that is available for us on the table without paying one rupee.

Like a kid in the candy store, I was completely lost in the library of audiobooks. I did not know whether to take refuge under self-help section or jump straight into the piles of books listed one after other by some famous authors like Malcolm Gladwell, Chris Bailey, Shashi Tharoor, Vikram Seth etc. My black coffee was done and it quickly reminded me that I now had just another couple of minutes to quickly finalise my decision. There came this beautiful white cover of “Compound Effect by Darren Hardy”. I tapped on the “DOWNLOAD” option and then kept the phone aside.

After finishing my cup of black coffee it was time for me to go downstairs and start my Yoga. It was during this time, I was going thru how to get started with audible and how to I….

Before I could realise all of this, I was almost halfway through my Yoga and was already enjoying my first chapter from Darren’s Compound Effect narrated in his own voice, set at 0.85x speed [because I cannot do a proper downward dog with a voice going in 1.5x and expecting me to concentrate… I could be a turtle at times and I enjoy it].

I took an oath that every day I will listen to Audible until I finish my workout. While I was mostly travelling during the majority of February month, I ended up finishing the book in a matter of 25 days. The book said it was 4 hours 44minutes long. Some people listen to it like their whole life depends on audiobooks by listening to the book at 2X speed and end up much before than 20 days. While some turtles like me, who listen while bending and twisting their head in contorted body positions find it extremely peaceful to go through the audiobook at lesser speeds.

On the 19th day, I simply could not believe that I had simply finished a book by just listening to it for a mere 15 minutes every day. [Well… I was working out only for 15 min the whole month] Not bad! Was my first thought. So will I now go ahead and purchase books on Audible? Hell yes [But I managed to download another book this month using my credits.]

Here is why I think Audible is best if you are a person who loves podcasts and listening to the radio.

Your Audible Book Layout Looks Like This
  • The collection of books runs from Arts & Entertainment to Crafts and Hobbie’s; From Food & Wine to Literature & Fiction; From Mature Content to Science & Math and many more genres. So stop giving excuses that the collection isn’t vast.
  • You can listen to the book at your own pace. Speeds vary from 0.5x to 3.50x
  • Jumpstart to any chapter that you would like to listen first.
  • Snooze off automatically with the Sleep Timer at the bottom of the screen.
  • What’s more… Bookmark your favourite chapters and lines from the book just like how you do it on a Kindle or your paperback.
  • If you are a person who regularly gets stuck in traffic or you are always busy with greasy hands in the kitchen then you have this amazing option called “Driving” mode which will remove all the unnecessary options and just helps you skim through the book at ease.
Audible in Driving Mode
  • Download your audiobooks to your phone and listen when you are stretching your legs in the plane or a place where your Wi-Fi sucks.
  • Just like your Kindle, Audible also could be accessed from anywhere, anytime. Even if you switch devices, you will never lose track of your books or your bookmarks.

For the guilty mommies and daddy’s who never ever tell Grandma’s Stories to their kids:

If you have kids at home, and you are one parent who hates telling bed-time stories to your kids then just invest in a nice pair of wireless headphones and put them on your kids head and switch on the audible app. Audible is now offering free books for kids. [Time to be a good mom/dad without dozing off and embarrassing yourself in front of the kid]

For the Hindi Book Lovers:

Lekin humein Angrezi nahi aati hain?

Koi baat nahi… Audible main Hindi Books bhi hain. Bas kaan main lagao aur sunte jao.

My Judgement:

I loved listening to books on Audible and I think it’s a new age tech for all those “old-school book lovers”. But, it’s time to upgrade yourself and listen to the book narrated by your own favourite authors. Even if you are an arch-enemy of these new-age reading apps just like the way you uninstalled the dating app from your kid’s phone… download karo Audible magar pyaar se.

How did I benefit from Audible?

I commute a lot [before the lockdown2020 ofcourse] in the crowded cramped Mumbai Locals with a fictitious baby bump [my laptop bag] and a dupatta wiping the sweat off my forehead after the marathon from one platform to another.

Whoever has travelled in Mumbai Locals know that nothing matters more than catching the right train at right time and also saving your life hanging by the thin thread of life and death. So it’s clear I do not want to hold a book in one hand and be the Sharmila Tagore of “Mere Sapnon Ki Rani Kab Ayegi Tu” song while my whole life is hanging by the worn-out grab handles of the local.  There are days when I have the luxury of having a nice place for my bum and reading THE WEEK magazine and throwing shades at all those miserable people standing with “mujhe seat de do” look in their eyes…. and then there are days when I literally pray to all the 10,000 Gods in Hindu Mythology to just let me inside the train. There are times when even the strongest Airtel network cannot penetrate the crowded trains and reach my phone… so the offline version of audiobooks on Audible perfectly suits my requirement.

On the other hand, I fly a lot as well. Most of the times, I end up taking a mid-night flight which means you are always having red-eye and people think you are a ganja addict. To keep myself awake, I plug in Audible into my ears and pretend as if I am listening to the world’s best rap music. By the time, the air hostess asks “Yatriyan Kripayan….” I am already done with 3 chapters and 4 paragraphs. Thanks to the Sleep Timer, by the time the flight is halfway to the destination, the app is off and I would have slipped to an indefinite coma.

I am a huge consumer of audio content, so be it a podcast or audiobook, I literally don’t give a flying fuck. For me, it’s all about consuming content. So yes, Audible literally suits me the best. Be it my gym, or my commute or my long hours of cooking something which I end up throwing in the dustbin… I am rest assured I am listening to something really meaningful and not wasting time in listening to the B-Town gossips streaming from the local radio stations. Even from a pricing perspective Audible is really light on pockets. So, yes mitron… during Covid time… try kijiye Audible. 

Posted in Daily Prompts, Kindle

Master The Art Of Getting Things Done Rather Than Waiting For The Right Moment


“If you can’t fly, then run. If you can’t run, then walk. If you can’t walk, then crawl… but by all means, keep going” – Martin Luther King Jr.

Have you ever come across people who want to accomplish their goals yet are trapped in a cage full of excuses?
Not sure about you, but I have come across many. A classic example of this behaviour can be seen in a group of bookworms. Whenever there is a group of people who love reading books, you can clearly see the distinction between people who read on E-readers like Kindle and another group who refuse to move away from paperbacks.

It has happened to me so many times. People sometimes just don’t get the actual reason why I moved away from paperbacks and switched completely to Kindle. It always leaves an element of curiosity in them. Because after all, books are nostalgic….it’s a different feeling to hold the book in your hands and read. [I agree]

You might be wondering why did I pick this specific example. Let me explain this for you all.

I am a person who focuses purely on the journey and not the egalitarian ways of working things out in another way. For me, it’s all about getting my work done on a daily basis and reaching a few steps closer to my goals.

I primarily focus on getting shit together rather than worrying about the right time to launch things.
In other words, I work towards making results happen and do not take any excuses into account.

As a result, every year, I manage to finish my book reading goals as compared to my other friends. This was possible, only because I read a few books on Kindle and a few books from my paperback library. I was not even once bothered about how was I achieving my goals…. my focus was only to finish my challenge. Kindle or paperback never mattered.

When you focus on getting results, you don’t get stopped by obstacles. Come what may, you always find ways to work it out. But when your focus is purely on aesthetics and other stuff, you get easily derailed from your journey and before you know, you would have lost a great opportunity.

A perfect example of this is the guy who is obese and wants to join the gym. He knows that the only solution to lose weight is to join a gym and start working out. But, he still keeps grumbling to himself that he does not have the right kind of gyms nearby / he does not have friends to join. On the other hand, there are so many self-taught yogis who practice yoga daily all by themselves 365 days a year. Whether they are in their homes or out on the streets, you can always see them not skipping their daily practice.

My two cents are very simple.

Focus on getting your goals completed successfully.
When your focus is completely determined towards becoming #1, your brain starts processing the information deep down your subconscious mind. This is the beginning of holding onto the journey of your dreams. Never be bogged down by phrases like “right-time or perfect-time”. The time will never be right… it’s all in your hands whether to make it right and use it to your advantage or just wait for the perfect moment [which never comes at all].

There is nothing called a PERFECT moment. This moment is all you that you have got to make your dreams come true. Stop procrastinating and start chasing your dreams.

Jon Tyson

Posted in Daily Prompts, Kindle

Beginners Guide Before Buying Amazon Kindle


If the above picture resonates the story of your life then…. welcome!

You are not alone! And here is Amazon Kindle for your rescue.

Amazon Kindle – is a device which is perfectly crafted for readers across all ages. It currently has three models.

  1. Amazon Kindle Basic
  2. Amazon Kindle Paperwhite
  3. Amazon Kindle Oasis

Before we delve into each of the  models which I explored during the last few weeks, let me first show you what a Kindle can do for you.

Exactly,

  1. You can carry it anywhere and read under all conditions.
  2. It’s sleek and handy. Doesn’t strain your hands.
  3. Waterproof (Only Kindle Oasis)
  4. Glare-free (all models) and brilliant resolution. The basic kindle comes with 167ppi but the rest of the models do have a 300ppi resolution.
  5. Has the capacity to hold up to 1100+ books. Which means as you go above the basic Kindle device, you get to store more books. The Kindle Paperwhite has the capacity to hold more than 2000 books. The Oasis is really a jackpot if you are a voracious reader. It comes in two variants 8GB and 32 GB which means you get space to store more than 5000 books.
  6. Battery life is extremely good. Every person who reads books on smartphones has experienced how annoying it is to read while having the battery drain at an exponential rate. With Kindle, one full charge will guarantee you to read two full books (provided you turn off Wifi). Without Wifi, the battery lasts upto a week if you are reading continuously.
  7. You are bound to learn more words on the go. Thanks to the inbuilt dictionary which opens with just a slight tap on the word. Also, you will learn more about specific events associated with the context of the novel if you enable the X-Ray mode. The device also has capability to search Web and Wiki you the information related to a particular scene in the book. Quite useful if you are too much into facts and figures.

My first-hand encounter with Kindle came when my good friend Krishnan lent me the Kindle Oasis which is priced at 21,999 INR.

I must say my initial reaction was “21,999 INR for a small reading device?”

But, as he said, it was only after using it rigorously for 2.5 weeks, I could understand why the Oasis is priced so high.

Compared to the other model kindle devices, here is what I think makes Oasis a better choice:

  1. Its lighter than the other kindle models.
  2. The resolution is 300ppi (much like Kindle Paperwhite) but the screen is 7″. Which means it contains more words in each page than the other models.
  3. It comes with 8GB storage which means you can store a minimum of 5000 e-books in one go. (If that’s not enough then I don’t know what else satisfies your greed).
  4. While I was traveling there were times when I had kept the Oasis in the bag and it was pouring cats and dogs outside. In spite of that, there was no harm to the device as it was completely waterproof. The other two models do not have this feature. So you have to invest in a good waterproof cover.
  5. The two buttons towards your right, helps as an easy navigator to cruise through pages.
  1. It has multiple options to customize your device like you can opt for battery percentage indicator (which is not there in other two models. You need to manually go and see whether the light in the device has turned from amber to green). You can also choose the layout of the device.
  2. The best part about Oasis is the adaptive brightness. With the Kindle basic version, you cannot enjoy reading in the dark. With Paperwhite, you can read in the dark but the brightness is not adaptive. Which means at times you may feel the brightness is too much and other times you might feel the brightness is just not enough.
  3. The orientation is automatic and you need not manually change it every time. This feature is not there in the other two models.

The biggest turn off in Oasis is the cost. So should you really spend 21,999 INR for this?

You should if you….

  1. If you are a voracious reader who purchases more than 30 physical books every year, then yes. You should not mind setting aside 20 grand for this amazing device.
  2. If you were a voracious reader once upon a time who was reading more than 30 books a year and are now constantly travelling throughout the world. If you are someone who is not so great at taking good care of gadgets then this one serves the purpose well.
  3. The device is made of hard plastic which means the screen is not as delicate as Paperwhite or Basic Kindle.
  4. If you invest in the leather case for this device, you will really enjoy reading it even more. Because, the surface of the kindle oasis is smooth as silk and has the tendency to slip off your hand.

Other than that, if you can adjust without the extra features then Basic version or Paperwhite are also a great deal for your money.

I have listed few pros and cons of both the models. You can check them out.

Pros of Basic Version:

  1. With Amazon running a starter pack offer, you tend to get a nice nupro cover worth Rs.999, Two Year Device Total Protection Plan (Rs.1,199) and special eBooks discount voucher (offering 50% off on all eBooks, up to maximum discount of Rs.1,000)
  2. If you are okay with the external LED light then you can close your eyes and go for it.
  3. The price is good deal.

Cons of Kindle Basic Version:

  1. No backlight which means your night reading is hampered.
  2. You either need to keep the lights turned on.
  3. Although the external light serves the purpose, but when I was travelling in train I found it very annoying with the idea of having a light always dangling on the Kindle.
  4. It becomes a messy affair over a period of time. And you would regret on your decision

Pros of Kindle Paperwhite:

  1. It has 300ppi resolution, better than the basic version which has 167ppi. If you think how does resolution matter, then go to your nearest electronics store and check both the versions out.
  2. Comes with backlight which makes your reading in night easier.

Cons of Kindle Paperwhite:

  1. The size is still 6″ and nothing better than the basic kindle except for the backlight.

My verdict:

I used to read a lot before I started motorcycling. Thanks to traffic in the city and my bus commute. I used to consume a lot of books. But after I started riding a two-wheeler, I seldom got any time to read apart from my daily bedtime reading.

I had tried reading from mobile phones as well and am proud to say that I managed to complete one full book of Steig Larsson’s Girl Who Kicked Hornet’s Nest in my Redmi Note 4, but the experience was too clumsy. More than the font or the screen size it was the annoying push notifications which used to frequently divert me away from the book. Kindle takes away all those distractions by making you stick to the book.

I could read books without much strain to my eyes. During my train journey, not even once I was distracted away from the device.  The glare free screen made the whole experience strain free even when I had to read it under the sun. During rains also, I was under great relief that the kindle was waterproof.

I have used Kindle during my bus commute as well. Since the device is light, it was easy to carry and read it as I was standing. Plus it made lot of people come towards me and ask what is this device all about….

I was happy to see people who are older than me, seeing the device and appreciating the many benefits of it.

One of the main things what I liked about Kindle device was that we can transfer our other pdf, .epub files to the device. This means, if you have any novel in .epub format, you can easily convert them to .mobi (kindle accepts only .mobi format files) using a software called Calibre and read it hassle-free. Inbuilt integration with Goodreads makes it easy to mark your reading progress and share it with your friends. Over the years I have downloaded more than 500 top e-books in .epub format. I was happy that with Calibre I could load it to my kindle and read them with ease.

So, if you are still thinking that every novel you read on Kindle should be purchased from Amazon, you are wrong. You have calibre at your rescue.

After having discussed the pros and cons of all three devices which one will I suggest for myself?

Will I buy an Oasis or Paperwhite or Basic Kindle? I am waiting for zero interest EMI offer to come up on Amazon so that I can buy Oasis. Oasis is designed perfectly for my hands and has perfect design aesthetics compared to other e-readers.

I feel it serves my purpose. Over the past few years, I have accumulated books worth 50,000 rupees all in physical format. After seeing Kindle, I feel so sorry for not having invested in a Kindle. In the future, I would buy even more books and hence I see Oasis being my go-to partner-in-crime.

While some people can argue that nothing can replace the charm of physical books, I say…. to hell with the emotions.

Because my primary focus is to read as many books as possible before I die. I don’t mind whether I read it as a paperback or read the same book on Kindle.

Thanks for reading!

I would end this review with another video of Kindle which celebrates the joy of reading on Kindle.

Quote Photo Courtesy: https://www.behance.net/Risarodil