How to “Read” More During a Pandemic

When COVID-19 arrived and lockdowns began, my commute died and so did consumption of audiobooks and podcasts. Audiobooks, especially those read by the author, can be so much more engaging and are a great way to pass the time during a commute on a train, bus or while driving. When we started working from home this became increasingly difficult.

One of the biggest audiobook providers on the planet, Audible, made some announcements around added and exclusive content and this provided a good opportunity to receive some tips on maintaining our “reading” during lockdowns.

Firstly, the announcements from Audible provide members with “Plus Catalogue” with over 11,000 pieces of content such as exclusive audiobooks or podcasts as part of the existing membership credits. For those using one credit per month for a new audiobook, the Plus Catalogue will not count towards that allocation and will be unrestricted.

Hearing that even more content is now accessible to Audible’s existing 200,000 titles one had to wonder how we find the time to consume it all. Audible had some tips. It turns out that we’re actually doing more “reading” than ever.

Leanne Cartwright-Bradford, Head of Operations for APAC at Audible said “since the pandemic began Audible members have been listening more than ever before (they enjoyed 25 books on average in 2020, up from 22 in 2019), and in 2020 members listened to over 90 million hours of content!”

Cartwright-Bradford also provided some tips on how we can actually get more reading done despite the pandemic and hybrid working:

  • Listen to your favourite titles while cooking, cleaning or out for a walk.
  • Set aside some ‘screen-free’ time before bed to listen to a new book.
  • Enjoy some family time with the kids by listening to an audiobook together.
  • Start a virtual audiobook club with your friends.
  • Make use of Audible’s various meditation podcasts to unwind from the working week

One tip we have on top of the ones mentioned above is to block time in your calendar to go for that walk. It prevents a meeting getting in the way and ensures you get outside and get through some extra chapters of that book.

If you’re struggling for book ideas and you are an Audible member some new titles have been made available as part of the Plus Catalogue. Dropping today as part of the new slate of content is The Orchard, starring Eric Bana and Magda Szubanski; The Success Experiment by FlexMami; Creative Differences by Graeme Simsion; and Love, Rock Bottom and Other Triumphs by Angella Dravid.

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