Talk To Me 08: Audiobook Habits

It took me a while to warm up to audiobooks. I tried them before and they didn’t appeal to me right away. I gave them another try recently, and realised that they were really nice to listen to! So what are my audiobook habits?

#1: I need to be doing something like listening to an audiobook.

If I try to listen to an audiobook while I’m just relaxing in bed, I will get bored pretty quickly. However, if I’m listening to it while I’m doing something physical, it makes good background audio. For example, I like listening to audiobooks when I’m walking around or hitting the gym. Although, it is pretty odd to listen to proper Regency-era people while pumping iron or wheezing because the elliptical is SO DANG HARD. (Seriously. That machine is a beast.)

#2: Audiobooks are great when I can’t read a book.

I also like listening to audiobooks in situations where I can’t read anything. During a really long road trip, my instrument of avoiding boredom was an audiobook of Melina Marchetta’s On the Jellicoe Road and Cassandra Clare’s Clockwork Angel.
Listening to audiobooks while on my commute is also really useful. I can’t read a book in a moving vehicle because I’ll get dizzy and that is just not a good start to the day. I can’t finish full chapters within a commute, but at least it helps tune out the world.

#3: Overused words get really obvious.

Maybe I don’t pick them up while I read, but certain words and phrases and their overuse stand out in audiobooks. The word “said” and the phrase “but it was too late” are some that I ended up noticing. It’s an interesting thing that my ears notice something that my eyes don’t in a book.

So what about you, dear reader?

Do you love/hate audiobooks? In what situations do you find yourself using them?

Let me know in the comments!


18 thoughts on “Talk To Me 08: Audiobook Habits

  1. I’m not a big fan of audiobooks. It’s a bit weird listening to someone read me the story instead of reading it myself (most of the time, I don’t even like the narrator’s voice). I haven’t tried that many, though. I definitely have to agree with you on that first point–I have to be doing something else while listening to an audiobook. It gets way to boring if I’m just sitting there. Great post!

  2. I struggle with audiobooks! I wrote a really long reply once about why on another blogger’s post that was super pro-audiobook, so I’ll you the short and sweet version. My biggest pet peeve is being read to aloud, and this goes all the way back to when I was 6 (18 long years ago!). I don’t care if it’s a book, a birthday card, a grocery list. Just anything I can read for myself, I cannot stand to have it read to me instead.

    However, I can do audiobooks when it’s a reread. I find it easier to follow along, since I don’t have to pay that much attention because I already know the story. I’ve tried new-to-me books, and ended up not hearing a single word. Reread are good to go though! Although the only time I listen to them is for the Dewey 24 Hour Readathon in the wee hours of the morning and during meal breaks. 😛

  3. I loved listening to audiobooks when I had a longer commute. I felt like the time was well spent if I was listening to something while stuck in my car 5 days a week. I also love listening to memoirs on audiobook when the author is the narrator. Especially for comedians’ books like Tina Fey’s Bossypants, for example. Listening to Tina Fey was 10x better than reading (I did both). Her voice just pulls you in. Great post!

  4. The last time I listened to an audiobook was when I tried “listening” to Mockingjay…and I never finished it 😦 It was so hard to concentrate on what the narrator was saying. And I can’t be too distracted when I listen to audiobooks, or I’ll get lost while the person is speaking! Usually when I read a book, sometimes I have to re-read parts to understand them, so if it’s read to me, I’m pretty screeeeewed. I probably won’t try audiobooks again, UNLESS I have to drive a looong distance on a road trip or something!

  5. I just wrote a post about how much I love audiobooks! ( I really like listening to them during my commute, too. It’s 45-60 minutes each way, so it definitely helps me pass the time. I can’t listen to them while I’m doing nothing, either, though. I have to be multitasking in some way, which is weird, because usually I’m so bad at multitasking haha. I listen to them a lot while I’m working, too. My job can be really mindless sometimes, so it really helps if I can listen to a book at the same time.

  6. I know what you mean. The audiobooks I’ve had so far have been by pretty good narrators. I like it when narrators actually read with emotion instead of sounding like robots. 🙂 Thanks, Kaitlin!

  7. Really? :O What was the moment that you went “Nope, I don’t like this!”?

    Ah, I totally get you there. Sometimes I accidentally tune out the audiobook and I have to go back a bit. If it’s a reread, I think I won’t feel too guilty about tuning out. 🙂

  8. Oh my goodness, I still have to listen to Bossypants as an audiobook! I have a copy of that, and it’s so funny! 😀 She’s such a funny lady.

  9. It is rather easy to tune out an audiobook when you’re distracted, isn’t it? I love road trips, and audiobooks are pretty useful for them. 😀

  10. Well, since you asked…

    Back in the first grade we did “popcorn” reading for EVERYTHING. I know this is suppose to be a good thing to help kids read better and all that, but I had the reading level of an 8th grader in 1st grade (this is fact based on some standardize test, which my mom still has the results tucked away somewhere). I could not listen to the other kids stumble over words and have to sound things out, so I always read ahead silently on my own. Then when it came to be my turn, I’d get in trouble because I never knew where we were. This went on for all of elementary school, and ever since then I can’t listen to anything be read aloud. I have to read it for myself, because I automatically just tune out. I know audiobooks are read by professionals, but years of tuning out the sound of others reading is hard to undo. :-/

  11. I also had to warm up to guidebooks. I tried samples, but didn’t like them. But now I tried audible’s free trial with Attachments by Rainbow Rowell and I’m loving it so far. I still have a long way to go with it though. But I’m already eyeing a couple other I want to listen to. I’m currently being nitpicky with narrators. 😛 unlike you, I listen on when I’m lying down and doing nothing. I’m more of a visual person rather than an auditory one. I need to focus on listening. But I like how it feels like someone’s reading to me. And it’s really nice when my eyes are tired. 🙂

  12. Whoa, reading at an 8th grade level in 1st grade? That’s amazing! 😀 But I can totally see how it can affect how you read your own bit of text. I remember jumping ahead too because I was a relatively fast reader, but not in 1st grade. Thanks for sharing, Angie! 😀

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