If your book was available on audio, this might have happened to you.
But if it’s not on audio, yeah, probably not.
Audio books (and podcasts and audio in general) is just more sharable than words on a page. This, keep in mind, coming from a guy who writes (on paper, sorta), Every Single Day. But there is something about audio that makes it more communal.
My sister was listening to her audio book (Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood, a Christmas gift from, ahem, me) and she was getting really into it while driving in the car to an appointment. However, she suffers from the lack of audio jack in the iPhone 7 and once she got to the dentist’s office, she couldn’t listen to her book.
Well, not with headphones.
“So, I’m listening to a really great book on my phone, but I don’t have the right cable for the headphones. Do you have an extra pair of headphones I could use?” They did not. “Oh, well, OK,” she was about to give up. But she couldn’t resist. The worst they could do was say no.
“The book is really good and since I’m the only one in here, besides you two, would you mind if I just turned up the speaker on my phone and you guys don’t have to listen if you don’t want to. Would that work?” They agreed.
I don’t know if they worked more slowly or if the X-ray machine really was on the fritz, but they didn’t want her to leave. “Wait, just a little more!” they cried. Finally, she had to leave as other patients were arriving, but they made her write down the name of the book so they could continue where they left off.
Is audio a magnet?
Let’s say she was reading a fantastic book when she came into the dentist’s office. Sure, she might have kept reading while in the dentist’s chair, but still, you have to spit and clench your teeth and it’s hard to focus when the hygienist has that jet-stream hose blasting your breakfast out from in between your teeth. It’s extremely unlikely that she would want to read it aloud (see note about jet-stream hose previous). So nothing would have came of it. Maybe she would have mentioned the book and maybe they would have been interested to buy it, but we’re now two “maybes” deep and each exponentially less likely than the previous one (like the way the Richter scale counts the severity of an earthquake).
But there was an audible voice in the room. There was someone reading a story in the morning in the privacy of a dental office and three people were mesmerized.
Have you picked up on the part yet about how this wouldn’t have happened if your book, yes, you, wasn’t available on audio?
Microphone + foam egg crates or just pay someone to record it because you never know what’s going to happen in the dentist’s office in the morning. Maybe next time, it’s your book. Well, if it’s available on audio, that is.