One Man’s Struggle with Visual Disability

On my Windows PC, I always use both the Magnifier and the High Contrast display mode to reverse screen colors.

While it gets me through the day, it is still an awkward way to use a computer. To read text, I must hover my mouse over it so it appears in the magnifier window which takes up the top quarter of my screen.

Most hardcopy printed material is tedious for me to get through, and I have stopped reading books many years ago.

Today, I had an interest in reading Syd Field’s classic book Screenwriting, the de facto book on the subject of… wait for it… wait for it… screenwriting.

My desire was strong enough to make some little fact of which I was peripherally aware come to the forefront of my mind – there is a Kindle reader application for PC’s.

A Google search easily took me to the correct page on Amazon and I downloaded the Kindle for PC software.

It came preloaded with Pride and Prejudice, Treasure Island, and a translation of Aesop’s Fables.

After learning the software and fiddling with it for several minutes, I discovered the font settings that work best for me, those being the largest font size, the most number of words on a page, the highest brightness, and the black background. I then go into full screen mode, and I began reading Aesop’s Fables.

For the first time in maybe about 10 years, I had the virtual experience of reading a book, without being squashed up into the highest corner of my screen. I can actually read the text without the magnifier tool and turn pages.

I’m not sure I’ll go back to reading as many books as I used to, but I know I will enjoy some, starting with Aesop’s Fables, and then maybe the entire Syd Fields library on screenwriting, and perhaps the Steve Jobs biography.

Aesop’s Fables has special meaning for me – grandma and grandpa always had a set of cards, the size of large playing cards or tarot cards, each containing an Aesop’s Fable, usually with a nice illustration of the animals on it. When we were little, I read those cards over and over again. In reading several just now, I realize many of my thoughts on morality and life came from these stories.

Thanks for being my Kindle inspiration Mom!

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