I was calculating how many books I can read on a several-stop trip to Hawaii we’re planning later this year and the thought struck me about how heavy this would make my bags. For a minute, I considered plunging into the of benefits digital reading, but just as soon, my considerations were debunked. We can’t consume all our information from screens of varying sizes; our brain needs diversification to absorb information.
Aside from the myriad of physical effects of too much screen time, by converting, I would be losing the multi-sensorial experience which accompanies reading a physical publication (book or magazine.) When I flip through the pages of a fashion magazine, I appreciate the art of the page design, where each word, picture, and advertisement has been thoughtfully laid out and eternally preserved. I feel and touch this magazine and indulge in physically interacting with it. The magazine takes me on a virtual stroll down Madison Avenue to appreciate the high fashion, the perfumeries, and the jewelry stores whose windows sparkle as I walk past. I can feel the smoothness of satin sheets between my fingers and smell the dried ink on the thin pages. I gain the momentum of relaxation simply from flipping the pages. Arguably I can also flip faster than a page can reload.
I love books as a gift idea; giving and getting. Somehow a gift card for a digital download doesn’t have the same effect. Additionally, books in themselves are pieces of art. The font is carefully selected, the paper thickness, the cover stock, the photos, the layout; all of this has to be appreciated by using all of our senses. Probably better not to taste it. How about art books? Will those too become extinct, falling to the weightless, free, Google image search for anything you can imagine?
I still print out my own work to edit. It’s frustrating because occasionally I rework every sentence on paper and basically do 1992 data entry to input the changes onto the computer. It’s counterintuitive and redundant, but I catch more on paper than I do on screen. My brain, on digital, is somehow programmed to skim more rather than concentrate on each word.
The rest of the world can Kindle and Nook; I’ll carry on with my love affair with the local library. Besides the extra book weight is great for untraditional exercise and flattening out my art pieces as they dry