Tag Archives: literature

Is there a difference as regards “reading” and “listening” to a book?

I was somewhat taken back when, several weeks ago, I heard an item on BBC Radio 4’s PM programme concerning reading. This short piece (which I have, unfortunately been unable to find online), consisted of a series of viewpoints as to what constitutes reading and, in particular whether listening to audio books can be construed as reading in the true sense of the word. One listener expressed the view that listening to audio books was not reading, and that anyone who said that they had read a book (when they had, in fact listened to it being read) was “lieing”. Now “lieing” is a very strong word and to my mind was misused by the person who employed it here.

There is, of course a difference (technically speaking) between reading and listening to a book and one may enter into a debate as to whether someone listening to a book has the same experience as the person who turns pages and absorbs the book in print or ebook format.

I, personally feel that there is something very special about handling and reading a book. I also find that my mind is more inclined to wander when listening to (rather than physically turning the pages of) a book. I will sometimes go into the kitchen to make a cup of tea while listening, miss a short segment and not go back as (in my view) I haven’t missed anything of significance. In contrast I will put a physical book down, go and make my tea and return to the bookmarked page ensuring that I have missed nothing of the plot.

Having said the above, I am a huge fan of audio books and believe that to listen to a well narrated book is, in effect to read it. So while the person who described those who say they have “read” a book (when, in fact they have listened to it being read), is technically correct. He is, in point of fact splitting hairs as to concentrate on a book being read is, to all intents and purposes to read it.

So far as my own books are concerned, I must confess that I like the idea of people possessing a physical copy of my work. I see it sitting amongst other books and the feeling of my book being enjoyed, then going to join a library of much loved books to be re-read at a later stage gives me pleasure. I am, however delighted that my latest collection of poems, “The Writer’s Pen and Other Poems” is available in paperback, Kindle and audio formats. Ultimately what matters is that my readers enjoy my work in the format that is most convenient/best suited to their needs and I certainly wouldn’t quibble where a reader to inform me that she had “read” my book when, in fact she had listened to the excellent audio narration of Alex Lee.

As ever, I would welcome the views of my readers. Do you feel that there is a difference between reading and listening to a book? And, if so in what lies that difference?

(For links to all of my books, including the print, Kindle and audio versions of “The Writer’s Pen and Other Poems” please visit my “About” page, https://newauthoronline.com/about/).

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How to request that your book is added to the catalogue of theUnited Kingdom’s National Poetry Library

If you are a UK-based poet, did you know that you can ask the National Poetry Library to consider adding your works to their catalogue. To find out how to request that the Library consider adding your work, please see below.

Having published “The Writer’s Pen and Other Poems”, on 3 September 2018, contacting The National Poetry Library is on my list of things to do. (You can find “The Writer’s Pen” here, https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07GD1LBMV.

“My poetry book is published. How do I make sure the library has a copy?

Firstly check our catalogue to make sure we don’t already have a copy.

If it’s not there, please bear in mind that we receive 200-300 new items every month and are unable to accept everything that is sent for the collection.

The Acquisitions Panel meet regularly to consider submissions.

For your book to be considered, please send in a copy including a return address; the librarians will consider it and respond to you.

Please send one book at a time. We have standing orders with most of the UK poetry publishers.

If you are a new publisher who would like to submit your books please get in touch.

We are primarily concerned with collecting UK and Irish publications so please contact us before sending publications from overseas.

Please get in touch”.

FAQ:  https://www.nationalpoetrylibrary.org.uk/visit/faqs.

 

Forthcoming Poetry Pamphlet

For some time now, I have been working on a new collection of poems which will, I hope be published in September. The pamphlet, which contains a total of 44 poems, is entitled “The Writer’s Pen and Other poems”. Below is one of the poems which will be included:

“My hair is barely wet
At all
And yet
The rain did fall
As I stood
In yonder wood.

The yammer
Of a hammer
Reached my ear,
While the birds free
Sang to me
As I touched the flowers
That know not hours”.

My pamphlet will be available in print initially and (in the longer term) as an ebook from the Amazon Kindle store.

If you would like to register your interest in obtaining a print copy please send an email to me at newauthor online (at) gmail dot com (the address is given thus to avoid spam). The print version will retail at a cost of £4.50 and signed copies can be obtained at no extra charge.

For details of my previous collection, “My Old Clock I Wind” please visit https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0735JBVBG.

‘An Act of Mercy and other stories’ promotion

Starting from Friday 21st until Tuesday 25th February, my collection of short stories ‘An Act of mercy and other stories’ will be free to download from the Kindle store.

Get ‘An Act of Mercy and other stories’ here now: http://www.amazon.co.uk/An-act-mercy-other-stories-ebook/dp/B00EHS74CS for the UK and http://www.amazon.com/An-act-mercy-other-stories-ebook/dp/B00EHS74CS for the US

The Great Cycle

Walking in the woods after rain. Damp grass caressing my naked feet, the scents of nature heady and pervasive.

Losing myself in the dark mystery, moving ever closer towards that which can not be expressed.

Time appears to stand motionless. That old gnarled log on which I have so often rested stretches it’s bulk across the leaf strewn path. Once part of something living it now acts as a convenient bench while, imperceptibly it decays returning to what it once was, rich earth which will give rise to new life.

Long before me these trees have stood. I will go and they will remain. I am part of something beyond myself, a living organism in nature’s mysterious plan. Yet I deny this on occasions. Hiding behind my computer’s screen or my head full of noise ear glued to my mobile. All seems paltry as I walk here. The technology with which man surrounds himself is a silly toy. Nature laughs at us. She waits, Man will go but she will remain.