8. Choose your complementary listening activity wisely
With a regular book, your eyes need to focus on the page, so you can’t do much else. When you listen to audiobooks, you can multitask.
You’ll also need to work your way up in terms of concentration here. If I’m walking a familiar route, taking a shower, brushing my teeth, or folding laundry, I can shut my mind off enough to concentrate on the book. Driving is also a good option.
If I’m walking somewhere new, or trying to organize something that requires a bit of thinking, these tasks take up too much of my concentration and then I can’t focus on the book.
I’ve also recently bought an iPod for the sole purpose of it being my Audiobook Kindle. You literally can’t listen to something and read something at the same time, so I have a device with no messaging functions, no browser, no anything besides Audible, and it helps me pay attention instead of bouncing around apps or trying to multitask while trying to listen.
9. Ignore best-of lists, all other advice and follow your heart and ears
A lot of advice articles tell you to listen to radio plays or live recordings to get into audiobooks, but once again, I really recommend listening to genres you already love first.
Feel free to ignore any of my advice that doesn’t jive with you, too! Follow your ears.
10. Beginner Audiobooks I Recommend
The War of Art — Steven Pressfield is the author of The Legend of Bagger Vance, but he also wrote this book about the creative process, and it’s one of the best books I’ve ever read. A couple of short and similarly inspiring books by Pressfield are Turning Pro and Do the Work.
Irresistible by Adam Alter — A nonfiction book about distraction in the Internet age and, I thought, a fabulous reading by an author with enough storytelling to keep you interested.
Grit by Angela Duckworth — Another great nonfiction reading by an author
The Beach by Alex Garland — This is basically The Lord of the Flies updated with backpackers in Thailand. It moves very quickly and the narrator did a fabulous job with about 100 different accents.
Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris — Sedaris is no stranger to radio story-telling, and this humorous memoir had me laughing out loud.
The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle — Okay, this book is great for falling asleep to, but listener beware! I really do not recommend training yourself to fall asleep to audiobooks as your first foray into the genre. If you really need a sleep aid though…