A Tale of Two Fails

Have you ever written a post you were so excited to share, only for something from it to end up becoming irrelevant just weeks later?

Yep, that happened to me just now. Twice.

Remember how excited I was to discover how I could download audiobooks to my phone (or Nook) without worrying about my data plan? I had a couple of free audiobooks I had acquired late last summer and finally figured how super easy it was to transfer them to a device with an Overdrive app, and that I could listen to them without an Internet connection! I transferred Sherlock Holmes over to my Nook successfully, but after that, NOTHING ELSE WORKED. I tried my other free audiobook as well as a library audiobook, and I tried transferring to both my phone and my Nook, but nothing happened. It seems Overdrive simply stopped transferring my stuff over after doing so ONE TIME.

I assume that this has something to do with the update Overdrive keeps telling me I need. But the problem is, anytime I try to update it, I can never get the update to come up! Just a browser window set on the default home screen comes up. I tried doing a search on their website about getting the update, but to no avail. I thought about downloading it all over again but chickened out, afraid it might mess something up. So alas, while I enjoyed listening to The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (particularly because it’s basically just short stories, so you could listen to like one 30 minute story a day and feel satisfied), it seems that’s my only audiobook option until I can figure this mess out! If anyone has any ideas, please share!

Fail #1 goes to Overdrive.

camp-nano-headerFail #2 goes to Camp NaNoWriMo.

Remember how I was excited for this “camp” in April where I can set my own word goal and I was going to start working on a new story and I asked all my blogging friends who are also participating to let me know their username so I could request for them to be in my “cabin” and we could all cheer each other on as we wrote throughout the month?!

I requested whatever the max amount of friends was, like five or six, and I know some of them requested me too.

BUT NOT A SINGLE ONE OF THEM ENDED UP IN MY CABIN.

dramatic-chipmunkSeriously NaNoWriMo?! What was even the point if you were just going to assign me to whoever the heck you felt like anyway?!

I considered, briefly, staying with these strangers. Maybe it would be a good experience for me, yadda yadda yadda. But you know, it’s going to be stressful enough without feeling like I have to be accountable to people I don’t know. I only wanted to do a cabin so I could cheer on blogger friends. So I opted out of that cabin, and all cabins, completely. And I decided to take matters into my own hands.

So, if you’re a blogger friend who is participating in Camp NaNoWriMo next month and are interested in being a part of a “group,” regardless of whether or not you’re in a cabin, I have set up a Google + Community for the occasion.  I set it as private because I didn’t want random people finding it and joining it, so either leave me a comment below or send me a Twitter DM with your e-mail address so I can send the invite to you directly. And as long as you’ve “spoken” to me at least one other time and are a blogger, I’ll send one to you. And we can cheer each other on our way, thankyouverymuchCampNaNo!

Have you experienced any “fails” lately? 

We Meet Again, Audiobooks

I know a lot of people don’t care for audiobooks, and I’ve never been that great of a listener (fact: in elementary school when we took standardized tests, I always did the worst on listening. And science.), so I never thought it was something that would interest me. When I got into the workforce, I discovered podcasts. When you work a desk job that involves data entry, they are a savior. I have found several podcasts that are interesting and make me smile and think all while doing my job. Sometimes when I run a little low on podcasts (fact: I’m never actually low on podcasts since I deliberately stay at least a week behind on most of them, and with the ones that are almost daily I am several weeks behind) I start to feel a little panicky because most of the time, music just won’t cut it. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy music, but most of it doesn’t occupy my mind quite in the same way.

headphones

Art by Michelle Lawrence

I also commute an hour both ways to and from work. I listen to a radio show in the mornings that I enjoy, but in the afternoon my routine varies. Sometimes I begin to think of how I wish I could listen to audiobooks.

I tried it out once when I went on a weekend trip. The narrator was good, I had no problem following the story, and it was all grand. But since I had downloaded the book from my library directly from my iPhone’s Overdrive app, it was apparently eating up my data plan. I had to stop listening to The Prestige somewhere around 60-75% through the story and still haven’t finished it.

OMC_logoI thought there had to be a better way that didn’t involve draining my data plan, but I never made the time to figure it out.

Then I got antsy again about my podcast number again. And then my co-worker asked me to help her do something with her Nook tablet. I have one too, though hers is newer and the operating system is a little different on it, and the question she was asking about had to do with her Overdrive app on there. I was able to figure it out even though I was unfamiliar with it, but suddenly I realized:

There’s an Overdrive app for Nook.

The Nook only has wi-fi, and we don’t actually have wi-fi at work, so…

There’s a way to listen to books without wi-fi or 4G.

I mean, it’s not complicated, I just didn’t bother to figure it out before. What I found out was that if I had just downloaded the books to my computer first, and then transferred them to my phone (or apparently my Nook as well), I can listen to the books at work in my car without using up any data. I tried it this week with one of the two books I actually had downloaded for free over the summer and viola! It worked beautifully. And to think I could have done this a long time ago!

So once I finish Sherlock Holmes, my current audiobook listen, I believe The Prestige and I are going have to pick up where we left off so I can finally get some closure. And then who knows after that? I’m keeping an Excel spreadsheet on what the library offers that I might be interested in.

I’m so excited to dive back into the world of audiobooks, and hopefully I’ll stick with it this time. While it’s not my preferred way to “read” a book, it’s convenient for a busy lifestyle.

Are audiobooks part of your life? Please feel free to recommend favorites!