alexchiri

2 minute read

Fiction or non-fiction?

I’m always on the lookout for new things, so I’m constantly reading and learning stuff. I noticed that I cannot read always non-fiction, because it is usually harder to digest, so I only do that in the morning (usually in the subway ride to work) when my mind is fresh.

At the same time, if I only read non-fiction, I feel like I am always thinking about the things I am reading and my mind doesn’t get to disconnect. This affects how well I get to focus on the reading. So I thought of making a habit in reading fiction in the evenings and non-fiction in the mornings. It is not very important how much I read every day, as long as I keep on going (don’t break the chain).

If you’ll check out my goodreads profile, you’ll most likely see I have two books that I am currently reading:

So many details

Because there are a lot of useful details in the books I read, which I fail to recall most of the time, I found useful to take notes. I tried all kind of approaches for this, but the one that seems to work best for me is using the Kindle apps for phone or tablet and highlighting the bits I like. Selection is too laggy on e-ink readers and I waste too much time on trying to get all the paragraphs I want selected.

When I finish the book, I export the notes and highlights from my Kindle account and put them in a blog post for sharing, but mostly for my later reference.

There’s one script I find useful to export the Kindle notes which is called Bookcision. It’s a bookmark with some JavaScript code that you should run on the Kindle page with the book notes and voilà!: easy exporting.

Bonus: podcasts

Another good source of information is podcasts, there are so many great out there. Unlike other people, I cannot focus on audio books or podcasts while commuting or driving. I focus much better on reading. So I was a little bit behind with my listening, until I had the idea to listen to podcasts while working out in the gym, one day per week. I do my training almost on auto-pilot and it’s usually quiet, so I can focus on the listening. For the more dense podcasts, I take notes between sets in my phone, notes that I also put on my blog.

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