Posted by: Jeanie F | March 1, 2011

Reading on My Droid

As I mentioned last week, Kindle has begun to publish short stories from The Atlantic under the heading The Atlantic Fiction. Many people like to carry their Kindles with them wherever they go, but I’m not one of those people. I appreciate that my Kindle is lightweight and compact, but it’s not THAT compact, and it takes up a lot of space in my purse which, frankly, already holds too much.

If you are an e-book reader, you already know that many e-books, including Kindle, now have downloadable apps for smart phones, iPads, etc. When I learned about the short fiction from The Atlantic for Kindle, I thought this was a perfect format to put on my Droid. I don’t much like reading on my phone – too small a page, too little text on a page – but I DO like having something with me to read when I end up having to wait in the doctor’s office, when meeting a friend, etc. Unlike my Kindle, I always have my phone with me, and sometimes it even has enough battery life for me to use it (am I the only one who always has a dead battery on my Droid?).

Generally I like to carry my current One Story selection with me, but I often finish it before the next one arrives. Anxious to try the new Atlantic short stories, I downloaded “November: The Lawrence Quint Interview” by Charles Baxter onto my Droid as a back-up.

I won’t say that this particular selection was a favorite, but I did love the convenience and the portability of having it on my phone. Because it is a single story, and short, the small format didn’t bother me the way it does with a novel. There are lots of great selections from well-known authors such as Joyce Carol Oates, Paul Theroux, Christopher Buckley as well as classics.

Now Kindle has come up with another “short” format – “Kindle Singles: Compelling Ideas Expressed at Their Natural Length.” These are essays, narrative non-fiction, short fiction (from sources other than The Atlantic), and opinion pieces on a wide range of topics – the types of feature articles that you find in magazines and, less often these days, newspapers. For people like my husband, who don’t read a lot of fiction, this is the perfect “next step” for a smart phone app.

If you carry a smart phone around with you – you don’t really need to own a Kindle – you might like to give these a try.


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