How I Read 26 Books in 2018

26 books may not sound like a lot to some readers but recently I heard, on a couple of different podcasts, that people struggle to even complete two books a year. Some people have a goal of 12 books a year and that was my starting point.

Reading 12 books was my overall goal for 2018. I committed to read 20 pages a day for the year. That comes out to around 600 pages a month which, depending on the book, varies how many books you will actually complete. I think most of the books I read were around 350 pages. So I was knocking out a book and a half to two books easily.

I kept a daily log, in Apple Notes, that showed how many pages I was behind or ahead as of the current date.

If I missed a day of reading, I would simply add 20 to my count that needed to be read. If I read over my 20 pages, I would subtract the difference from my total count that needed to be read. It was a simple way to keep track everyday.

2018 was a busy year. So I often got behind. In all honesty, I didn’t catch up on my reading until the beginning of December.

Making this something you have to do everyday may seem like a chore for some people. If that is the case, do not follow it because you will not enjoy what you are reading. You should want to read what you are reading or you are just wasting your time.

When my wife and I went on our honeymoon, our goal was to relax. We didn’t want to go on excursions or be too busy exploring. We wanted to chill. And that is what we did.

While in Jamaica, we both read a lot. Drinking some frozen vodka lemonades or Rum and Cokes by the pool and reading our next book was truly relaxing and we knocked out a lot of reading. With all of the time that goes into getting married, I was already behind on my reading. So this free week of doing nothing was a great way to catch up. Again, I’m not saying to spend your entire vacation reading but if it is something you enjoy doing, that is what vacation is for!

For 2019, I started using this app called Strides. It is a habit tracking app. After I do my reading for the day, I check off that I did it. It keeps track of how many days in a row that I have completed those specific task. I also have it set up to remind me at 8 PM every night if I have not completed the tasks that I have put in there. In the short amount of time that I have used it this year, I find it very useful.

People will often say that they do not have time to read (or whatever other thing you WANT to start). But if you really want to start with something, you have to make the time. It sounds cliche, but it is the truth. When I was getting behind on my reading in December, I woke up a little bit earlier to make sure I did my reading. Or if I knew my evening was booked, I made sure to wake up earlier to compensate for the lost time in the evenings. The biggest thing is, is that you have to want to do what you are attempting to do. With no motivation, nothing will ever get done.

All of this might sound silly and unnecessary, but it worked for me and kept me on track. The best thing I can tell you is to find a way that works for you, modify it as needed, then stick to it. Carve out that time to read what you have been planning to read for years. You got this!

If you want to see all of the books that I completed last year, check out my Instagram!

Reading on Kindle Paperwhite vs iPad

Apple Tree of Knowledge: Did you know that it was reported, in 2011, that each Apple employee brought in over $200,000 in revenue every year for the company, while only getting paid slightly above minimum wage? This eventually led to employee outrage and Apple raised employee wages and offered better benefits. Moral of the story, know your value and you can make a case to be treated better.

I started my journey with the Kindle when I was deployed with the Air Force in 2011. At the time, I didn’t have a Kindle so I started downloading free or cheap $.99 books from the Amazon store on my iPhone 3GS. Being that it was the only device I had to read on, I didn’t know how much nicer reading on a bigger screen eventually would be.

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After my deployment, I went to Target and purchased a Kindle. It was fascinating knowing I had all of these books in one spot. Since the Kindle books are primary just text, you can fill hundreds, if not thousands, of books on a single device.

At the time, I didn’t think I had a need for an iPad. I had my phone and had my MacBook. That was all I needed until the iPad mini was released. At that point, my Kindle started to be neglected. Reading on my iPad mini was fantastic because not only could it hold all of those books that the Kindle could, but it also was my computer replacement. I could do nearly everything on this one device.

I eventually moved onto my iPad Air 2, which is my current iPad. Again, not much different than the iPad mini as far as how it works, but its size. It is a great e-book reader, but I was looking for something smaller, again.

Enter the Kindle Paperwhite.

Size

Comparing my iPad Air 2 to the Kindle Paperwhite, you will notice there is a significant size difference. My iPad is a 9.7″ screen while the Kindle Paperwhite has a 6 inch screen. Sizes of the screen doesn’t matter too much other than being able to fit more text onto the screen at one time. Just as an FYI, you can change the size of the text on both devices to make it easier to read or to fit more text onto the screen.

Where the sizes of the devices start making a big difference is when it comes down to the weight.  The iPad Air 2 weighs in at 437 grams while the Kindle Paperwhite weighs 205 grams. As you can see, the iPad Air 2 weighs more than double that of the Kindle. This will be a dealbreaker for mostly everyone if you are looking for a standalone e-reader. If you are a reader who likes to read hours at a time, the Kindle will definitely be the more attractive option for you.

Function

If you know anything about the iPad, you know that it can do pretty much everything your phone can do and can sometimes replace your need for an actual computer or laptop. When I am not in school, the iPad becomes my computer. The fact that you can take this device everywhere and do the things you can do with it, is incredible. You can use the Kindle or iBook store on the iPad. So if you have books purchased on either store, you have access to them.  As far as a device that does it all, the iPad gets that check mark.

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The Kindle is an e-reader and that is about it. And sometimes, that is a good thing. With the iPad you deal with notifications from all of the apps on the device. If you have your texts and iMessages coming through, you are distracted by that. With all of the distractions in the technology world today, sometimes you need that break from it all. That is where the Kindle shines. There are no dinging or pinging noises. It is a device to read a book. Plain and simple.

Battery

Apple tells us that the iPad will get around 10 hours of use. Of course, what you are doing on the device will make that number vary big time.

Amazon tells us that the Kindle Paperwhite under certain backlight settings will get you around 28 hours.

Regardless of how you use the devices, you can see that the Kindle destroys the iPad, as far as battery is concerned. But it makes sense. With the iPad you are getting a beautiful high definition display and the hardware and software combined does a great job making that battery last as long as physics allow. With the Kindle, it uses an e-ink display. It is far from beautiful but that is how it gets such a long battery life. This may sound silly but one downside with having something like the Kindle, that has a long battery life, is that you always forget to charge it. You rarely have to charge it so by the time it needs a charge, you already forgot to plug it in. So as a reminder, before a trip, charge your devices!

Price

The cheapest iPad you can buy right now is the iPad 6th generation (which I recently wrote about if you want to learn more). It comes in at $329 and will do its very greatest if you want it as an e-reader and a device that can handle most of your computing tasks.

The Kindle Paperwhite is usually $119.99 but as of this writing is $99.99.

Conclusion

So, as you can tell, there are quite a few differences, advantages and disadvantages to reading on both of them.

If an iPad is something that you have been eyeing up, I cannot recommend enough having one in your lineup of tech devices. It does its job as an e-reader plus much more, but also have to sacrifice size, portability and price.

If you just need an e-book reader the Kindle Paperwhite is a fantastic device. It is small, light and cheaper than the competition.

Let me know in the comments, twitter, Instagram or Facebook which device you like reading on!

Thanks for stopping in!

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