Monday, April 30, 2012

Musing Monday...Do You Hear What I Hear?

It's Monday, so let's see what Miz B at at Should Be Reading has in mind this week...

This week’s musing asks…


Do you listen to audiobooks? If not, why not? And, if so, what has been one of your favorites, so far?


Not looking for trouble here. but didn't we muse about this recently?
Oh, that is ok..I love to repeat myself. Sometimes endlessly.
So, do I listen to audiobooks?
Hmmm..well, I do, on occasion. Not a regular basis though.
Why? Because I do not think we are really suited for each other, audiobooks and me.

I only figured it out in recent times, but I am not an audio person. I blame that for my total inability to learn a foreign language. Ok, not total. I somehow made my way through 3 years of Spanish class in high school, even getting good grades but it was all a sham. In one ear and out the other..literally. Now a written language, like Latin and classical Greek, they and I got along just fine. Well, except that one teacher in high school who though Latin should be taught as a spoken language. I could have murdered her. Happily, no other Latin or Greek teachers I had shared that idea.

I learn things visually. When I remember things, I actually 'see' them in my mind, as they happen or as I saw them in a book. Even my memories of spoken things are visual..which is a bit hard to explain. The written word, on a page, is my friend. Things I hear are not.
Yes, audiobooks. My attention wanders. I have a problem following the story. Even at its best, I think I miss a lot of detail that I would have picked up in a written text. And for me, that is a lot of the enjoyment of reading that I am missing. So, even at their best...by which I mean the ones that do not put me right to sleep, audiobooks are a lesser thing, a compromise, as opposed to a written book.

Now, I have had a few fair successes with audiobooks, but I realize it has to be the right book and under the right circumstances. A long road trip, ideally on a boring interstate is perfect. Nothing to distract me but endless road, mile after mile. But taking maybe only one road trip a year, even at a couple of books per trip, that is not very productive. Oh well.

And the right book helps. Not a book with a big cast of characters. No, that is sometimes difficult enough in print, where I actually 'see' the names. Not a book like a complicated mystery with a lot of twists and turns. No, something more straight forward I think.
I had a lot of success, audio speaking, with a couple of books by Joshilyn Jackson...Gods in Alabama, Between, Georgia. They were narrated by the author and I thought she was perfect. I actually have Backseat Saint on my iPod, but I somehow screwed it up and the chapters got all mixed up..wow, I was happy I was listening to it on a walk and not a 12 hour drive somewhere. That would have driven me nuts.
Which unlike my road trip, is not a long drive.

18 comments:

  1. It's been a while since I listened to an audiobook, but they're alright with me.. Sometimes I get annoyed with a narrator's take on a character, but other than that, we can get along just fine :)

    Here's mine: MM

    *New Follower*

    ~ Keely ~

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  2. I dont do well reading instructions, I must see/do in order to learn. That has nothing to do with the question .. as to the question, I dont listen to audio books because they put me to sleep ... like a lullaby .. since I dont own a car my road trips are usually in rentals where I drive or in friends cars with them driving .. radio or music CD or just conversation but no audio books .. I'd be afraid I'd nod off ..

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    1. Happily , the sleepy time /audiobook thing does not happen to me in cars. But at home, forget it. Out like a light.

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  3. You know, I'm just happy and proud that you've tried them! And what better ones to try than JJ. She is perfection on audio. I am a huge audio fan, but even with me, there are times when it just doesn't work. Sometimes it is my mood, and I'll switch to another one and come back around to the original one later. Others, there is no hope. Bad narrator, too many characters, convoluted plot. Some great books have been ruined by audio, and some mediocre books have been made great by them as well. But. I am ALWAYS plugged in.

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    Replies
    1. Your raves are one of the few reasons I ever try an audio. So I thank you for JJ!

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  4. This is actually one of the most incredible sites I have read in a very long time. The volume of information in this post is wonderful, Your website is excellent for any one who would like to know this topic more. Excellent stuff; please keep it up!

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  5. Great answer! I can't really listen to audio books, they always mess me up. There are definitely some good ones out there though! :)

    Here's mine:
    http://amylunderman.blogspot.com/2012/04/musing-mondays-to-z-challenge-z-zombies.html

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  6. I do listen to them occasionally, especially if I am not feeling well, or in a reading slump, and just don't feel like reading a book. Thanks for the visit today.

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  7. I think that we share the same foreign language disability; no aptitude at all. Although I never really thought about it as being connected, I really don't like audio books either.

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    Replies
    1. I think it is just the way my brain is wired. Et tu?

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  8. I've tried listening to them but I just couldn't get it together. Here's my Musing

    Cathy @ Addicted to Books

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  9. From the few times I had to listen to an audiobooks, it was always difficult for me to grasp a picture of everything going on the story. When I read a book, it's like a movie playing inside my head and I can see everything going on. When I'm being read to, I agree, it's like I miss all the details. Here is my Musing Monday: agreatescapebookblog.blogspot.com

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  10. Your last line cracked me up. When I'd say something was driving me nuts, my dad would always tell me that wasn't a drive, it was a putt. Anyway, I'm a visual learner too, but have grown to love audiobooks.

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  11. I hadn't considered learning style being part of my problem with audio books. I'm visual, too, and tend to zone out when listening to books. But this week's Musing is kind of inspiring me to give them another try!

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  12. I've very much enjoyed Joshilyn Jackson's narrations of her books … she is ideally suited for reading them. I always thought I wasn't cut out for audiobooks but found that they make boring things (housework, walking the dog) manageable and (dare I say it) almost pleasant!

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  13. I do listen to audios during my commute to work, but some books are harder to concentrate on then others.

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  14. sob...I find them all so hard ...sob ;-)

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please speak up, I LOVE TO HEAR FROM YOU!!