Did you know that you can do more on your Kindle than purchase and read e-books from Amazon/Overdrive/Smashwords/etc.? I’m here to offer another way to utilize this beautiful piece of technology.
Please note: my experience is based on personal use of a Kindle Keyboard and a Kindle Paperwhite. Other brands and devices may vary.
The following is based on using one simple feature: emailing documents to the device (instructions and link further on).
As a college student, I used this to view the many documents my professors liked to share with us. Not only did it save time, money, and paper, but it was also much lighter and easier to carry around.
As a beta-reader and editor, this feature is super convenient. My experience with Word (.docx) files is pretty easy. Once it has arrived on my device, the highlight and notes features work well for me to record short thoughts or highlight problem areas. While this system isn’t perfect (I haven’t yet seen a way to export the document with highlights and notes), it’s still very convenient. I am able to make my first read-through of a client’s manuscript without being attached to my computer. This has an added benefit: I read their work on more than one type of screen, which is good for catching a better percentage of errors (I am human, after all).
Here’s the technical part of sending documents to your Kindle.
Your Kindle has its own unique e-mail address. On the Amazon website, go to the “Your Account” menu, “Manage Your Content and Devices,” and click “Settings” (the far right choice). Scroll down a bit, and Amazon will list your Kindle e-mail address(es) and their associated device. Recently I’ve found that as long as I send it to one of my kindle addresses, the document is available in the cloud for whichever device I decide to use.
Wait! This isn’t the only information you need. Scroll down just a little more. “Approved Personal Document E-mail List” contains a list of the e-mails that your Kindle can ACCEPT e-mails from. If you don’t add your address (or wherever your documents are coming from), they won’t get to your Kindle! You really don’t want to know how long it took me to figure out why they weren’t sending at first…
Amazon’s help page for “Kindle Personal Documents Service” has specific instructions and file types supported.
I hope this has been a helpful tip on another way to use your Kindle. Happy Reading!