Hugh Howey
Hugh Howey

Bestselling author of Wool and other books. Currently sailing around the world.

Relationships and Dead Batteries

My Kobo has a dead battery. Again. And something occurs to me as I search for the e-reader’s charger: It’s the long-lasting nature of the device that allows it to run dry so often.

I know that sounds strange, so bear with me a moment. Think about your cell phone. If you have a smart phone like mine, that sucker goes dead unless you charge it nightly. The fragility of the thing fosters a habit of extra care, which keeps it juiced up and ready. We don’t have complete confidence in the battery, and so it begs for attention and therefore rarely fails us.

My Kobo, on the other hand, is a stalwart beast. The battery can go for a week. Because of this, I never plug it in. It sits around; it gets picked up; it gets used; and then it’s dead. I can’t count the number of times readers have messaged me to whine about their dead e-readers. I think my experience here is a near-universal one.

And aren’t relationships the same way? Those that are fragile, we nurture. Those that are secure, we begin to take for granted. When we assume it’ll last forever; it isn’t until the love runs down or something breaks that we think to charge it back up.

I had a great time on Stickam last night signing books and chatting with readers. But it was all the sweeter because Amber was there. I need to remind myself to spend more time charging up the very relationships that I assume will never fail me. And maybe this is a near-universal as well.

7 replies to “Relationships and Dead Batteries”

Truer words, my friend…

Why not unplug right now and take that girl and that dog for a walk somewhere summery and beautiful?

I charge up my battery every morning by making breakfast and packing lunch for my wife. Well, maybe three or four days out of the week when I don’t work late at night. The little extra effort at the beginning of the day makes up for whatever unintended stupid thing I might say or do later in the day. I kind of like cooking, but with your talents and skills, you probably can write a poem for her every day which is much more romantic and touching.

Interesting thought.

In a sorta kinda roundabout way what you’re saying is that which is weak gets coddled whereas that which is strong — even if it is an ereader — gets used to death until it relents and is finally forced into a plugged-in-and-ready-to-be-charged-up break. I know people like this.

Wait a minute, I AM people like this!

In any case, just discovered your blog and am loving it. I shall return. :)

I was surprised and delighted to see Amber. Yes, take your own advice. Little things everyday make a difference. I love the way my husband wakes me every morning (4:30 a.m.) before he walks out the door to go to work. Even when I am semiconscious, he gives me a kiss and tells me he loves me. That is an extreme feat considering my morning breath! What a way to start the day! :)

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