Question of the day.

What was the first book you read?

My answer:

The first small book I read was “God And Mouse” by Angela Toigo. When my class had just learnt the whole alphabet we had an outing to the library and we were showed around and stuff and at the end everyone of us drew one of the small children’s books to read during the week. I drew “God And Mouse”, and it was like very small. I didn’t actually enjoy it that much, I found it rather boring, but I finished it in one day straight after school and I remember everyone being so very surprised. ๐Ÿ˜€ Probably because the rest of my class didn’t even start theirs yet hahaha. But I loved reading and could read relatively fast so that wasn’t much of a problem for me despite the book was boring, the problem was I wanted something more interesting to read. ๐Ÿ˜€ But that wasn’t that very important. The first book I read that I count as first, and that was really a book and something I did enjoy, was “The Six Bullerby Children” by Astrid Lindgren, which is what first made me love Sweden and Swedish language and Swedes. My Mum read this book to me countless times before I even started to learn to read so I already knew some parts of it by heart and I loved it, but I really really wanted to read it myself. It was more difficult as this is a bigger book, and took me much more time, but I really enjoyed it a lot. And since then I reread it many times, the last time was when it was a compulsory reading for Zofijka, and Zofijka is much less keen on reading than I was at her age, and was moaning how she doesn’t want to read it and doing nothing about it, so finally, not wanting to hear her whining anymore I just got pissed off and read it to her. Maybe not very pedagogical thing to do but I am not a teacher nor a parent and am not going to be either as long as it is up to me haha so I don’t really care, and we both had fun, and at least she managed to “read” it on time.

How about you? Did you enjoy it? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Are there any “beach reads” you recommend?

My answer:

It hugely depends on what you mean by a beach read and what you generally like to read on the beach. As for me, beach is one of the few places where I don’t ever read anything just because of my desperate dependency on my PlexTalk, I respect it way to much to let it wallow in the sand and get soaked by the waves, what would I be without it? So I can only tell you what my Mum reads on the beach. My Mum usually reads light things on the beach, that don’t require much thinking, but make you laugh easily, that are interesting, but not too addictive because you have to put it away once a while to change your position if you want to tan evenly, and you need to keep an eye on Zofijka and find things to do for her, because no one else will do it for you. ๐Ÿ˜€ As for her I guess she mostly likes interviews or biographies, right now she’s reading Sylvester Stallone’s biography I suppose. But I also think a not to trashy so called women’s literature will do on the beach as well, and that’s what pops in my mind immediately when I think about a beach read.

That being said, I actually can’t remember when was the last time I read any beach read, not because I not read them, I like to do it, but because I never read them on the beach and don’t have a habit to evaluate the book as for whether it is a good beach read or not. ๐Ÿ˜€ But I think what I can recommend you with a clear conscience are my all time favourite authors’ book – Maล‚gorzata Musierowicz – from her series “Jeลผycjada”. The thing is though, I highly doubt they’ve been translated into English. I read once an article on English Wikipedia about Musierowicz and there were English titles for some Polish books, but I couldn’t find them anywhere else. I guess it wouldn’t be an easy work to translate these books, they’re maybe easy but very speciffic at the same time and Musierowicz’s style is very significant and characteristic, and it is so Polish, which is good, but I’m not sure whether such books with so much of a particular nation’s mentality are actually really translatable and can be successful anywhere else, there would have to be tons of translator’s notes to make it intelligible. Oh well, but I don’t know what else I could recommend.

Maybe something from Rosamunde Pilcher? I’ve read a few of her books as a teenager and wasn’t in love with them but it was quite cool, and I guess it could be a nice choice for a beach read.

What are your recommendations? ๐Ÿ™‚

[categoryย  Diary,Books]

Question of the day.

Do you use any e-reader? If so, what was the last physical book you read?

My answer:

Of course, I do use e-readers. On a daily basis, I use my PlexTalk, also, because I like to read on my own, in Braille, I often read books on my Braille-Sense, which is a Braille notetaker with a Braille display, and among other things you can use it as a reading device. I feel like I absorb and learn more if I can read something by myself, rather than listen to it, so if I have the choice, I use my BrailleSense, though PlexTalk is much more comfortable option like in bed or while travelling or something. My Braille-Sense is quite portable but because it’s now over 10 years old, the battery is pretty much screwed up and I can’t get a new one at the moment so I have to have it on the charger actually all the time nowadays. But when I read books in other languages, if they’re not audiobooks, I almost always do it by myself. Also sometimes I happen to read books on my laptop but it’s rather rarely nowadays.

The last physical book, hm, as much as I love physical books in theory, it’s rather tough in practice to read physical books in Braille regularly. They’re way larger than normal, way more expensive, and generally not the most handy on the Earth. They’re very limited, you can’t get just whatever you want in Braille, I mean sure, you can order it in some printing house or something, I was once forced to do so, or my Mum was, and the costs were a pure nightmare. So if you were blind and wanted to only read physical books, I guess you wouldn’t read a lot since in most cases you should be rather prepared that the book you are looking for isn’t available anywhere. I theoretically am subscribed to our Polish sort of main Braille library, but since there are so many comfier, cheaper and useful alternatives I don’t see much of a point in doing so, unless I really wouldn’t have any way of reading anything on my own, then I would probably read at least some physical Braille books just to not become a secondary illiterate, as it’s not quite a tempting perspective for me. In the past, when I didn’t have as many reading devices, it was a regular thing in our family life that we were getting HUGE bags with books in mail from that library, there was always a lot of hassle around it, they were heavy, my Mum had to go back and forth to the post office quite often, often even was shipping the books forward to my school so that I could read them as I wasn’t at home most of the time, but I’ve always been a bookworm so there was no other way. ๐Ÿ˜€

What I borrowed from the Braille library for the last time, were tables with mathematic formulas that I needed to prepare to my finals, and, quite obviously, if you know me well enough, I’ve never thought about reading it whole like a book, there are so many more interesting and important things to do in life, right? ๐Ÿ˜€ I just got what I needed from it and that was all. So, hm, do I actually remember what was the last physical, actual book I’ve read? I guess nope. Had to be like four years ago, if not more, because even already in my last years at the school for the blind I was reading very few physical books other than textbooks or compulsory readings or such. Wow, I didn’t even realise it before. ๐Ÿ˜€

How about you? And which way do you prefer to read? ๐Ÿ™‚

Some questions on reading, books and Goodreads.

So today I’ve found a little survey on BTN message board about Goodreads, books and reading and thought I’d ask you the same questions, just for fun, and will answer them as well. Feel free to join in, either in the comments, or in your own post, don’t forget to pingback. ๐Ÿ™‚ You don’t have to have Goodreads to answer most of these questions, if you don’t, just skip the ones that don’t apply to you.

Do you use Goodreads?

I have a Goodreads account, but I hardly ever use it nowadays, I used to do it more in the past.

What do you think of book social media in general? Does it make you want to read more, does it discourage you from reading long books because you want to read as many books as possible, does it make you feel pressured to read certain things etc.?

Book social media are a generally good thing and it’s good that they promote reading, I think. However I myself don’t use them excessively, and, although I like to use them from time to time for some book recommendations, they don’t influence me that much in my book choices. However what I find slightly amusing is how people tend to read books as if it was sort of competition, who will read more. It’s good that book social media encourage people to read more and more, like Goodreads, which lets people set a goal for every year, how many books they want to read, but in my opinion, what is far more important, is what you read, than how much. It’s sad that people tend to read less nowadays, than in the past, but even if they’ll read three books in a year, but will enjoy them, get something valuable out of tem, learn something new, it’s much better than if they’d read 50 rubbish books, or such that aren’t completely of interest for them, just because they’re popular. I feel like if you want to read for the sake of quantity, you can’t really focus on the book you read, because you still think how much you still have left to achieve your goal, try to hurry up with reading, and so often don’t get out of the book as much as if you wouldn’t be so crazy as for how much you read. But I might be wrong, for me numbers were never particularly important, and I always appreciate quality way more than quantity. As for feeling pressured to read certain things, no, it’s actually otherwise. Often I don’t read things that are popular, unless I truly see something valuable in them for me personally, something I could truly enjoy. I never read something because others do it. I’ve never read “Twilight” or “Harry Potter” – well, those two I also haven’t read because they’re against many of my views, but that’s another thing. – So if I see something’s very popular, yes, I might look at reviews, or ask people about what they like in this book so much, but unless I just don’t feel it in my gut that I can like it, I don’t read it.

Do you care about the rating scale? What is your opinion about 5 star ratings for books?

Ratings, in whatever field, have been always a rather tricky thing for me. I dunno, maybe it’s again my brain that is allergic to numbers and finds them quite abstractive. If I rate books, I tend to look individually at each one, so sometimes my ratings may seem sort of inconsistent logically, and I never care about others’ ratings, it’s just a little scale and it can’t say much about your impressions, plus numbers are so boring. I much prefer reviews.

What shelves do you have (if not on Goodreads, do you have a physical TBR shelf, favourites shelf etc.)?

I don’t have any particular shelves on Goodreads nor other websites recommending books, I just have everything I read cramped on one shelf, I guess I’m too chaotic and not systematic enough to make it more organised. The books I have, I have also in one big folder, without any particular order. I do have physical bookshelves in my room with physical books I bought, mainly Swedish ones or books about names, etc. but once I scanned them, they only have a decorative function, and a bit sentimental, since I love all of them so wouldn’t sell them or anything and want to have them in my room even if I can’t read them physically. And they’re pretty organised, usually according to the genre.

Do you d reading challenges and/or trivia?

I used to in the past a lot, but now almost not at all.

Do you write reviews?

I used to on my Polish blogs, but very inconsistently, nowadays I don’t do it, but when I read an interesting book, I often take notes and put them into my diary so that I can remember my impressions later on.

Do the reviews often change your mind or whether you want to read something?

Usually not, but it may happen at times. Sometimes, when I look for something new to read, I check my recommendations in Goodreads or its sort of Polish equivalent Biblionetka, and then when I can’t decide if I’d really like to read a book that is recommended to me, I look into reviews, and sometimes they help me to make the decision. Also when I find a book particularly interesting, I like to read some reviews after I finish it, to compare my impressions with others’. I also regularly check reviews of my favourite authors’ books, but since they’re my favourite authors, reviews rather aren’t able to change my mind and discourage me from reading their new book, even when they’re very critical.

Do you follow authors (if not on Goodreads, on any social media)?

Not really, I only tend to check my all time most favourite Polish author – Maล‚gorzata Musierowicz’s – website, because she has a sort of blog and often writes very interesting things, and in an awesome style, but recently I don’t do it very regularly.

Do you trust the “recommendations” algorithm?

I never blindly get a book to read just because I saw it in my recommendations on whichever site, I first always look if it can actually interest me. ANd it can be really different.

Best and worst books you’ve read because of Goodreads (if you’ve read anything because of Goodreads)?

It was a long time since I’ve read anything because it was recommended to me by Goodreads, so I just can’t remember. And as for the worst books, if I feel like something is bad, and just can’t get through it, and really don’t have a strong motivation to read it, I usually just leave it, why force to read something you don’t like.

I’m curious about your answers. ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

What is the last thing you read (not counting this post lol)?

My answer:

I’ve been reading a lot of blog posts and other stuff today but can’t remember what was exactly the last thing. But the last book I read was “All The Names In The Bible” by Thomas Nelson.

How about you? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

What are you currently reading?

My answer:

Recently apart from reading all the other stuff I like to refresh some Lucy Maud Montgomery’s book from time to time. But now I read them in the original versions. Montgomery’s books have a lot of different translations in Polish, and I’ve read all of those which I was able to get in any accessible format, many for a few times, but now I am reading her books in English. This time I decided for a collection of her short stories called “Along The Shore”, which has two titles in Polish, of which one can be translated as Scent Of The Wind, and the other as Traces In The Sand, so it sounds completely different. I often like to read books in different translations, and then in their original version if I can, and compare different details from each of these versions, sometimes you can notice really interesting or bizarre differences. Like if you’ve ever read “The Blue Castle”, you know that its main character’s name is Valancy. But in some old Polish old translation, I guess 1920’s or something, the translator decided he will rename her and he called her Joanna. I’d read another, much newer translation before where she was just Valancy, it was a very good translation and I loved the name Valancy, so, you know, with my name geekiness it was for me like I was reading about a completely different person, she wasn’t Valancy anymore, he was someone different. And also another character named Barney was renamed to Edward. I can somehow understand renaming Valancy to Joanna – her middle name was Jane, and Jane is Joanna in Polish, while there isn’t any equivalent for Valancy, and I guess people in 1920’s didn’t have that much of an idea about how to read English names – but, OMG, why Edward? ๐Ÿ˜€ It’s neither similar in sound to Barney, nor in feel, nor fits the character, so I couldn’t figure it out at all, the more that the name Barney doesn’t seem to be that complicated to read. And that translation was f***ed up overall, with large parts of text completely cut out and lots of weird stylistic errors. There is also a popular translation of “Emily Of New Moon”, not that bad, but with some errors as well, and one that particularly made me laugh was how the translator decided to describe one of Emily’s cats – a grey-eyed cat with ebony black eyes. ๐Ÿ˜€ I guess she had to be very sleepy while writing. ๐Ÿ˜› So that’s to give you a little idea what such a translation, or mistranslation might look like at times. ๐Ÿ˜€

But, coming back to reading books in originals, first and foremost if you really like an author and if only you can read their books as they were originally written, it is in my opinion a much closer contact with what they really wanted to show you in their literature. Even the most accurate translation can’t express it fully since every language is so different and, first and foremost, everyone of us has a different style of writing, and everyone interprets things differently, so if you read something in its original version, you have the possibility of interpreting it more on your own and you don’t have to base on the translator’s interpretation of what the author wanted to say, even if it’s just a pretty universal ad easy to read shortstory. And, obviously, if you read books in their original versions, in languages that aren’t your mother tongues, the benefits for your linguistical development and your brains overall are significant.

And what are you reading? ๐Ÿ™‚

Three days, three quotes challenge – day 1.

Thanks so much for Saumya at

Randomness Inked

for nominating me to Three Days, Three Quotes Challenge.

Today’s quote comes from my Mum’s calendar, she has a lot of them in it and they’re very interesting, I just found an English version of it.

Whenever you read a good book, somewhere in the world a door opens to allow in more light.

Vera Nazarian.

THe rules of the challenge say I should nominate three people for it each day, but I’m gonna leave it up to you. If it sounds fun to you, just pick it up and let me know so I can see which quotes you chose. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Question of the day.

Here’s the last question from the series about reading:

Did you like reading as a kid, love it or detest it?

My answer:

as I wrote a few posts ago, I had a period very early on, when I didn’t like reading, but it was very short and passed quickly, and then I started to absolutely love reading. Books were my main source of knowledge about the world, about the people etc. as well as one of my forms of escape from the reality and I’ve always found it very therapeutic. as far as I can remember, words were always very important to me, I could feel them in so many ways, since I guess I have some kind of synesthesia related to words, I’ll probably post about it in future, I liked to play with them in different ways, learn new ones, I just loved the language in general, so reading even increased it. I loved the fact how it extended my vocabulary and still does and I loved it when I noticed it how flexible the language can really be. So I definitely loved and still love reading a lot.

How about you? Did the situation changed since your childhood? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

If your school separated you by reading groups which level were you at?

My answer:

Neither of my schools did that, or anyway it wasn’t something casual. But in school for the blind where I was for most of my education we often had reading contests – class, school or interschool, in the Central Library, and I kinda liked to participate in them and pretty often was winning some leading places. Also, I don’t know how it is in other schools around the world, but we usually had so, that if we were reading in class, usually the teacher picked a person to read a bit, then another to read another bit and so on, and the rest just followed the text. Because I read quite well, teachers often picked me, just to have it done a bit more efficiently than most of other students would do it and not waste too much time. And I know many of my classmates were annoyed by me, because I usually read pretty quickly and they were lost easily. ๐Ÿ˜€ Also later on I had a very lazy Polish language teacher who used to take an advantage of the students whom she perceived “more bright” and so she often wanted me to read stuff to a classmate who was dyslexic. So I guess that all says I was pretty good at it.

How was it in your case? Also, do you think separating students by their level of skills is actually good? Are you one of those who think it makes children less self-confident, or do you think it helps children on a higher level to develop quicker, while also helping children on a lower level to go up, but in their own pace and with the support adequate to their needs?

Question of the day.

Did you learn [to read] through phonics or memorisation?

My answer:

Completely through memorisation. How it started for me was that we were getting a text to read, as easy as possible, but not only with the letters we’ve learnt, and before we even started to analyse it as for which letters ae which and stuff, we had to memorise (at least partly) the text, and then we read it multiple times without even recognising many letters consciously. it was a bit weird, and I think pretty boring, but apparently that had to help us accustom to reading in general. There was such a funny situation when I came home for holidays and had my book with readings with me. And we had some guests – grandparents, some aunts and uncles, mostly family – and my Dad wanted to show off with me and that I am starting to read. So I opened the book on one of the readings that we had to practice, and followed the text, but just was saying what I memorised and remembered. And they all were like WOOOOW! You can read such a complicated thing! In fact, it wasn’t complicated at all, I guess, but just much more than you’d expect from a child in first grade lol. My Dad was astonished too. and I was very proud of myself, because I didn’t really differentiate between memorising and reading yet, I was also sure I am reading, just like them. ๐Ÿ˜€ The only conscious person in that chaos was my Mum.

You? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Was it easy for you to learn to read, or was it difficult?

My answer:

Apparently, when one of the staff at my nursery showed Mum how I’m going to read and write, she felt it’s impossible for me to achieve it. She already knew I have issues with coordination and sensory integration and she thought it would be just impossible for me to manage it. However, that turned out not being true at all. Although my coordination and sensory integration still is poor, and I mean actually very poor, it went relatively easy. At the beginning, I had a period when I didn’t like to read, it was just very exhausting for me and boring and all. But it changed very quickly and suddenly when I started to make some real progress, I started to love reading. And I learnt it very quickly. I remember my class teacher was making some additional readings for me, I know they were about a boy named Jacek and a girl named Fifi (I asked her to write about them for me, I don’t know why I came up with Fifi though). And I remember that one of them was about Jacek breaking his leg and walking with crutches, the scenario was also mine. ๐Ÿ˜€ I loved these readings so much and they were much better than what we had in our text books. Back then I was able to only read in Braille, I wasnn’t very familiar with technologies in early primary school as I had to teach myself about them, so I didn’t have anything to read at home and that was the only thing I really disliked about being at home, because I quickly realised that life without books is quite boring. So my poor Mum was desperately looking for some libraries or other stuff around our voivodeship (voivodeship is like a Polish province), but it didn’t help that much, so finally she signed me up for the Central Library for the blind and they always sent me just literally packages of books. It was quite an interesting view for our neighbours ๐Ÿ˜€ (keep in mind that Braille books are always larger than standard ones) and they were wondering why we get such an extensive mail all the time. Sometimes Mum sent me some books to the boarding school, but it didn’t work out practically. I also used to steal some old books from the attic. ๐Ÿ˜€ Things got more severe when I left the boarding school for two years for the integration school, I couldn’t cope emotionally at the boarding as you probably already know, so we thought maybe integration school will work out for me. At this time I had a legs surgery and I was rather immobile for months afterwards and, besides it being awful overall, it was also just so incredibly boring, so the only constructive thing I actually could do and enjoy was reading. I was literally able to devour anything readable, now I’m much more fastidious. ๐Ÿ˜€

How about your experiences? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Today, my question for you is:

When did you start learning to read?

My answer:

I was prepared to it long before I actually started to learn to read, it started sometime when I was in the nursery. They basically prepared us how to read Braille, using different things that imited how it works and we were taught how to use, but not to write yet, different Braillers, it was more of a play than actual learning though, we didn’t actually know why are we doing this. Well I was actually interested why because it seemed boring for me and a bit pointless when I was 6 yeas old or so. And there even is a film about us, I mean our nursery and I was going to it when it was filmed, and they filmed me doing all that stuff with one of the staff’s assistance and all of the sudden I asked her “Why am I doing this?” Everyone who was around then or watched it found it very funny, but actually, I think it’s very important to have some sense behind what you’re doing, isn’t it? ๐Ÿ˜€ And she answered that it is because it’ll help me to read in future and that I will read lots of fairytales and all and she thinks I will love to read books and maybe write my own lol. And it all came true more or less and my family is making laugh of her that she was a prophetess, I even read fairytales pretty often to this day. ๐Ÿ˜€ So yeah, that was about my reading preparations and then I went to the reception and it was then I started to read. I really liked to learn it and truly always looked forward to learn new letters, I considered it a lot of fun. That was when I was 7-8, I know normally reception is earlier, but I went to the nursery when I was five, I don’t think it would do me much better if I went earlier, plus most of children there were even older than me. SO it was rather late on. I remember that we went to the library with our class teacher and were drawing books for ourselves and the one I drew and that was my first longer read was “God And Mouse” by Angela Toigo. It was rather boring, at least so I thought then, but I think my opinion wouldn’t change that much if I’d read it now, although I read it in one afternoon.

When did it all start for you? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Recently, I asked you guys quite a few questions about your families. Now I guess I’m going to focus on questions regarding reading. So the question for today is:

Do you remember your parents/relatives reading to you?

My answer:

Yes, I do. Being blind, obviously you have a bit limited choice of books you can read. Anyway so was with me when I was a child, as I weren’t familiar with that much of techy stuff, for some reason it wasn’t an important thing for our school to teach us about things that can help us read in this or that way. So when I was a little kid, even when was technically able to read and when I was at home, my Mum often read books for me. I think the first one she read to me was “The Six Bullerby Children” and so my fascination with Sweden started. I wanted her to read it to me again and again and again. And again. And then once again. And then I read it on my own, but actually could as well recite parts of it lol. Then I remember books like “Krรณlestwo Bajek” (The kingdom of fairytales) by Ewa Szelburg-Zarembina, “Anne Of Green Gables” and even popular science books like “Czy Wiesz Co Jesz?” (Do you know what you eat?), although being less than 5 I don’t think I understood much of it and I can’t recall more than just the plain fact she read it to me. So before I went to nursery she read to me A LOT, then not that much because I was at the boarding school almost constantly and of course Olek was little and she hadn’t much time for such things. But she still read to me from time to time. I think the last whole book we read was “Sprฤ™ลผyna” (Spring, but not spring as the season, but the object spring) by Maล‚gorzata Musierowicz. I’ve read all Musierowicz’s books on my own as a teenager and “Sprฤ™ลผyna” was the first to come out after I’ve read all of them and although it was released, it still wasn’t added to the catalogue in our library for the blind, so my Mum bought this book for me and read it to me. It took very long to go through it, but we did it. Oh and one summer a few years ago she read to me Lucy Maud Montgomery’s diaries, that was cool too! Now Musierowicz has released another book which I haven’t read as it’s not accessible yet, so maybe she’ll read this one for me too. She also read “Moomins” for me and my brother when we were kids. It happens that she reads a fairytale for Zofijka and I always listen to it too, I love fairytales from all around the world and my Mum is good at reading them. Recently we read a Russian one in which the main character was called Misha. ๐Ÿ˜€ I have the same book with fairytales as my Mum, moreover, I have many other books with fairytales, but I just like when she reads to me or to us. And it was me who picked that fairytale about Misha as I knew it was there. ๐Ÿ˜€ Sometimes Mum also reads to me some religious books, or about medicine, sometimes some newspapers and books to school if I can’t access them. . And sometimes I read to Mum as well, I’ve read to her for instance “Blue Castle” by Montgomery and “Outsider” by Colin Wilson, a book that made me thinking a lot and I thought she should know it too, but she couldn’t find it in bookshops.

Zofijka reads to me too, but more because she wants than because I do. She reads to me her obligatory readings. I always wonder why obligatory readings are so boring, or at least the vast majority of them, but they are anyway. I think it helps her if she reads them to someone.

When I was at the boarding school, my God mother came to me for a weekend and she read “Emily Of New Moon” to me. She told me we’ll continue when I’ll be back home, but it never happened. I was so curious that I just borrowed the book and ended up reading the whole series on my own. And I love it and find it my favourite series to this day. I just love Emily so much and generally Montgomery’s books, they’re about me lol, well most of them anyway. ๐Ÿ˜€

And I recall one time when my gramma read to me during one summer holidays when I was very small. SHe read to me some kids poems. Nothing fascinating, but I was happy and amazed she’s reading to me, as she has always been a very busy person. ๐Ÿ˜€

How about your experiences? ๐Ÿ™‚

Question of the day.

Today, my question for you guys is:

How often do you read? Where do you get your books? How do you decide what to read, next?

My answer:

I read ALL THE TIME. Well whenever it’s physically possible while doing other things. As I’m blind, I read (or some of you would probably prefer to say listen to) books usually on a specialised device called Plextalk Linio Pocket (I may post a picture of it just for fun sometime later as although it’s nothing very unusual, I’m sure not many of you could ever see it before ๐Ÿ˜€ ). It’s small and portable and I can either have audiobooks or talking books in a special format called Daisy on it or I can read ebooks or any other text files with speech synthesis and that’s how I do it most often. I also can read on another device called Braille-Sense which is basically a Braille notetaker with a Braille display, you can read and write in it and it has some APPS and if you write in it you can save it to a text file so it’s not like you have it only written in Braille. I like to read on my own, I don’t do it as often as I listen to books, but I like it even more ’cause I just simply prefer to read than listen usualy, especially if I read in another language, other than Polish I mean.

So when I have time, I read in bed in the morning before I get up, then I read from time to time throughout the day, I read when I’m waiting for something or someone or am bored and have PlexTalk with me and can do it. I always read before falling asleep in bed, very often in the car, and almost always when I can’t sleep at night. So there are lots of opportunities to read, I think.

As for where I get books, it can be problematic at times. Usually, the first place where I go to if I want to read a speciffic book is the website of the library for the blind that we have here, the main library, they have an option that you can simply download any book that is in their collection if you have sent them the proof of disability, speciffically blindness, and if you live in Poland. These are accessible books, but of course not all books are there, and books in other languages aren’t there, well only a few, and certainly not in Swedish or Welsh. ๐Ÿ˜€ So if something isn’t there and it is in Polish, I usually will need to either just buy it as an ebook if it is available in such form and if it’s in an accessible format, or would have to get a physical book and then scan it, which I just genuinely hate as it’s a bit of a sisyphean task, especially if you’re totally blind like I am, ’cause apparently people with some sight have it a bit easier. So I only scan books that I really really want to read. With English books, I use Audible and Bookshare and have just started with both this year. With Swedish books, an immense help was my Swedish teacher, who borrowed me a lot of books when he was teaching me and I have scanned them, but as I don’t know any blind Swedish people I don’t know how they really get books, well I know they have some organisation like NFB is in US or RNIB in the UK or PZN in Poland and they can have books from their library, but not people from outside the country, so, it sucks a bit. With Welsh books it’s just a pure luck if I get one and I always appreciate it even if it’s not my level yet. There’s so few Welsh books overall so I’m always extremely happy if I succeed to get something or if someone is so nice to help me. I recently got Mabinogion in Welsh, but I’m far behind with the vocabulary yet, so it’s waiting for me.

The way I decide what to read next, is very simple. I have quite a lot of books on SD cards, which I use with my devices, and usually I just read them in alphabetical order, unless I need or really want to read something speciffic at a certain time. And as I still get new books, I never run out of them. As for how I choose books I want to read, I use either our Polish site called BiblioNetka, which is basically like your GoodReads, or I use GoodReads and then check the original title in BiblioNetka whether it’s translated into Polish and if the book is available anywhere for me, then I get it. Also I regularly check new books in our library and get what sounds like I might like it or what I’ve been waiting for, and sometimes I’ll read what my friends or other people I know read if we have similar tastes.

How about you? ๐Ÿ™‚