24 Hour Readathon!

From The Hidden Side of A Leaf

Yes, like we really need an excuse to do more reading. !! There are other ways to contribute as well. I'm going to try to participate, looks like great fun :)

SATURDAY OCTOBER 20TH, starting at 2pm GMT

We’re timing it to line up with the 24 Hour Comics Day, so the date will be Saturday, October 20th. I checked Google Analytics and saw that the majority of my readers are in North America, with the second largest readership in Europe. So I tried to come up with a time when the greatest number of people will be rested. 2pm GMT is 6am in California, which may be early, but if you normally get up at 8, you can just start at 8, no problem. Here’s a world time zone map.


People who sign up to be readers are committing to reading books, posting updates in their blogs, and if they need breaks, visiting the blogs of other readers and encouraging them. The most hardcore among us will stay up the entire 24 hours and do nothing but read and update, even going so far as to skip showering and eat meals while reading. However, not all of us are that hardcore, and it’s ok for you to customize this readathon to meet your needs. Personally, I have a chronic illness, and while I’m planning to try to stay up 24 hours, I take medication that makes me drowsy and I’m not sure I’ll make it. Other readers may have small children, or previous commitments, etc. that may take up some of their 24 hours. All I ask is that you be honest in your updates, and that’s about the only rule for readers.
Updating for Readers: This should be individually customized. If you want to spend 5 or 10 minutes updating each hour or every 3 hours, that’s great. If you want to update whenever you feel like you need a break from reading, that’s great, too. If you want to just read and read for 24 hours straight and then write one big update, that’s also great. You do what works for you, ok?
Suggested format for updating: Again, customize this as you wish, but I suggest updating about what you’re reading, how many pages you’ve read since your last update, and how much time you’ve spent reading since your last update. You may want to keep a running total of time spent reading, number of books read and pages read; this could make you eligible for some prize drawings. Updates might also be your typical book reviews, once you finish something.
Readers visiting other readers: Do this if and when you’re in the mood, as often as you like.
Tips for Readers:
1. Pick shortish books. When you’re reading for such a long time, you might get really sick of the same book for hours on end.
2. Choose something light (children’s books, funny books, graphic novels, books you already know well) and save those for the end when you’re tired and sick of reading.
3. Try not to pick really dense non-fiction unless you have the most enormous attention span ever.
4. If you’re going to use this time to catch up on other challenges, try to have a big variety available. You don’t know what will hold your attention, so don’t assign yourself specific books without alternates.
5. Give yourself permission to put a book aside and not finish it if it’s not holding your attention.
6. Just in general don’t be a masochist. This is supposed to be fun! And if anything about the challenge makes you start picturing of me with little devil horns and wanting to strangle me, please stop and change it so that it works for you. Or, you know, go ahead and scream TO HELL WITH THIS CHALLENGE and go to sleep. We don’t want sleep deprivation making you hate your pal Dewey.
If you would like to be a reader:
1. Please put your information into the Mr Linky below.
2. Leave a comment letting me know you want to be a Reader.
3. And then please check this post every now and then for possible updates.


We’ll need at least 24 cheerleaders, one for every hour. I’m kind of nervous about this part, because what if only three people sign up to be Cheerleaders and I have to be the Cheerleader for 21 hours? Keep your fingers crossed! Depending on how many people sign up, there may be two different types of cheerleaders.
Mini-challenges: The 24 main cheerleaders will each choose an hour (first come, first served) that they’re responsible for. During that hour, they will post a mini-challenge in their blogs. If they don’t have blogs, they’ll email me their mini-challenges and I’ll post them at this blog. If their mini-challenges involve drawing a Reader’s name for an individual challenge (or more than one name for a small-group challenge) then they will go directly to the blog of those Readers and inform them. The 24 main cheerleaders will be the ones to come up with these challenges, but they also need to let me know their plans so I can make sure there aren’t duplicates.
So wait, I don’t get this mini-challenge thing? I got a lot of questions about this after the brainstorming post. I can’t give TOO many details, because the mini-challenges are meant to be surprises. Readers who go to the blogosphere to update or take a break will find surprise mini-challenges waiting for them. By magic. Readers do not need to check in every hour for mini-challenges. Unless they want to.
The 24 main Cheerleaders will each come up with a mini-challenge. I’ll help those who want help. If you volunteer to be one of the 24 main Cheerleaders, you’ll get more details about how the mini-challenges can work via top-secret, mysterious emails that everyone else will be dying of curiosity about.
Cheering on Readers: Beyond the main 24 Cheerleaders, we can have an unlimited number of Cheerleaders. In my little fantasy world, the entire blogosphere is so charmed by my readathon idea that we have thousands of Cheerleaders, all vying to be noticed by Readers, who of course suddenly become the Technorati Top 100. But I learned about age 4 that my fantasy world has very little do with reality. The other role of Cheerleaders (both types) is to visit the blogs of the Readers and encourage them. The Cheerleaders don’t need to try to stay up 24 hours. You can sign up to be a Cheerleader and just visit and encourage Readers during the normal course of your blogging, or you can make a project of it and spend tons of time visiting Readers. It’s flexible.
If you want to be a Cheerleader:
1. Put your information into the Mr Linky.
2. Leave me a comment with your email.
3. Let me know in the comment if you want to be one of the 24 main Cheerleaders who do mini-challenges and visit Readers, in which case you should also tell me your preferred hour for your mini-challenge. Choice of hours is first come, first served. Wait, I already said that, didn’t I? Well, as long as I’m repeating myself, here’s the time zone map again.
4. Let me know in the comment if you want to be a non-mini-challenge Cheerleader who will only visit and encourage people.
5. Please check this post every now and then for possible updates.


(I expect to keep finalizing the prizes over the next month until the read-a-thon day. Check back for updates.)
Confirmed prize donations:
*Two Amazon gift certificates for $20
*A copy of Book Lust or Book Crush and a Librarian Action Figure
*Books: Titles to be announced
Surprise! A prize drawing right now! I also want to copy Carl’s RIP challenge (Hi, Carl, are you here?) and hold random prize drawings in the month leading up to the challenge. So here’s a prize drawing right now! Let me know in the comments if you want to put your name into a drawing for a hardcover copy of Margaret Atwood’s The Penelopiad. You just know I snuck this into the middle to see who was paying attention, right?
Prize Categories: I want to put together prize packages for the following categories.
1. Random drawing(s) for Readers.
2. Random drawing(s) for Cheerleaders.
3. Random drawing(s) for all participants.
4. Reader who read for the longest total time (or a drawing if there’s a tie).
5. Most enthusiastic Cheerleader (or a drawing if it seems like a tie).
6. Prizes for some mini-challenges, if we have enough donations.

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