Sunday, October 14, 2012

Read-a-Thon Wrap-Up

End of Event Meme:

1) What hour was most daunting for you?
-Honestly, the first couple of hours were. I'm just not a morning person, and I couldn't wake myself up enough to really get into the book I was reading (though it's a favorite).
2) Could you list a few high interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?
-Children's/Middle-Grade books are always great for read-a-thons. Roald Dahl was a fun, fast read and I really loved reading the Sweet Valley book. If you're a fan of any of the SV series, I would definitely recommend rereading a favorite or even picking up one you haven't read/can't remember reading. I still have a few Sweet Valley High and Sweet Valley University books from years ago that I may pick back up again for the next read-a-thon.
3) Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-Thon next year?
-I liked when we took a "count" of people still participating in the later hours of the read-a-thon (maybe around Hour 18 or so) by using Mr. Linky. It made it easier to visit with bloggers who were still active.
Also, for the mini-challenges that required pictures (one's taken personally), I would have liked a second option since I am not able to upload pictures to my computer from my phone and could not participate in those challenges, though I would have really liked too. I'm not sure how much of a problem this was for other people, though.
4) What do you think worked really well in this year's Read-a-Thon?
-I think the Cheerleaders were great and were able to get around to all participants at least once. It's always nice to receive a comment and some encouragement :)
5) How many books did you read?
-I read 2 full books and partially read 3 others.
6) What were the names of the books you read?
The Christmas Ghost and The Witches were the two books I read in full. I also read the last 70 pages of The Great Gatsby, I read 79 pages of Witness in Death, and about 150 pages of Fables and Reflections (so approximately 693 pages all together).
7) Which book did you enjoy the most?
-The Christmas Ghost
8) Which book did you enjoy the least?
-I really can't say. I enjoyed all the books I read a lot. Fables and Reflections was a bit stranger than I was used to (it's a graphic novel about dreams, but there's so much more to it) and I was too tired to really get into The Great Gatsby. However, I still loved reading both, so I can't honestly answer this question.
9) If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice . . . ?
-I wasn't a Cheerleader
10) How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-Thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?
-I will definitely be participating again and I will, of course, be a Reader but I think I'd also like to be a Cheerleader for a couple hours next time too.

Read-a-Thon Hours 19-24

Hours 19-22:

I planned to only take a half hour break but that stretched into an hour and a half before I finally picked up my next book. I read 79 pages of Witness in Death in the past hour, but I am going to set it aside now so that I can start the graphic novel Fables and Reflections, which I really wanted to get to for the read-a-thon. Since WiD is a reread, I don't mind saving the rest for another day. I'm going to try really hard to finish Fables before the read-a-thon ends. Wish me luck!

Hours 23-24:

Well, I made it over halfway through Fables. The pages aren't numbered, but I'm going to estimate that I read about 150 pages of the novel overall. Not bad.

I didn't actually make an official goal, but I was hoping I would read at least four full books. As it is, I read two full books and partially read three others, so in page numbers I think I fell a book short, but I'm happy enough with what I accomplished.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Read-a-Thon Hours 13-18

Hour 13:

Mid-Event Survey:

1) How are you doing? Sleepy?
-Nope, but that's just because I fell asleep just 2 hours into the read-a-thon (sad, I know). But now I am raring to go and will hopefully stay alert and reading for quite a few more hours yet.
2) What have you finished reading?
-I finished The Great Gatsby and The Christmas Ghost
3) What is your favorite read so far?
The Christmas Ghost- it was just such a fun, quick read and it really made me feel accomplished since I was able to finish it in under two hours :)
4) What about your favorite snacks?
-I've enjoyed my Lipton tea the most so far. I didn't plan out my snacks for this read-a-thon so I haven't eaten anything special (just a Lean Cuisine meal and a couple of slices of mushroom pizza)
5) Have you found any new blogs through the read-a-thon?
Unfortunately, I haven't had much time to look at the other blogs, though I really hoped to do that a lot this time around. I slept through the morning and felt behind on my challenge, so I have been focusing on my reading. I only just started looking at other blogs this past hour. Hopefully, I can spare some time later this evening to check out more blogs and cheer some more people on.

Hour 14: Started reading The Witches by Roald Dahl and am 60 pages in so far.

Stella Matutina's Picturrific Mini-Challenge

I found this image at the Open Market blog. In the book I'm reading, The Witches, the main character is a little boy who is beginning to train two white mice that his grandmother gave him. He hasn't trained them to ride mini-scooters (yet), but he has trained them to crawl up his arm and to walk a tight-rope.

Hour 15:

Fall Challenge

For the past three years, my family and I have taken a scenic train ride through the Carolina Mountains (Great Smoky Mountain Railroad). We look at the multi-colored leaves and then hang out by the Tuckasegee River for a while and drink hot chocolate. It's really nice. I love the mountains in the Fall.

Hours 16-18:

I finished The Witches (208 pages), my third book of the challenge. Now I really want to watch the movie with Angelica Huston. It's one of my favorite movies to watch around this time of the year.

I'll be starting Witness in Death next, but first I'm going to take a little break and grab a snack. I'm starving!

Read-a-Thon Hours 7-12

Hours 7-11:

After my disastrous beginning, I am now finally starting my second book, The Christmas Ghost. I probably won't start participating in mini-challenges or do much online for another few hours so that I can try and catch up. I want to at least finish this book first and be into another before I distract myself. Off I go!

Update: I finished The Christmas Ghost (186 pages) and it was a wonderful, quick read! A perfect holiday book! I'm watching Halloweentown High with my mother right now, so I think I'll finish watching it while participating in mini-challenges and visiting other blogs for the next hour (Hour 12). I'll start my next book in Hour 13--not sure what it'll be just yet.

Hour 12:

Joystory's Literacy Mini-Challenge

This picture reminded me of myself when I was first learning tor read. Or, technically, it reminded me of stories my mom told me about myself, since I don't really remember it that clearly. She would tell me how everyday when I came home from kindergarten, I would head straight to my room and get a pile of books (The Berenstain Bears and Little Critters were my favorites) and sit there for hours teaching myself to read from them. She said I looked like I wasn't really having fun but was just absolutely determined to learn. I can't say for sure if I actually enjoyed myself during those moments or not, but I know that I loved reading as early as age 7 and that my love of reading has continued to this day. :)

Marking Books Mini-Challenge

Option 2: I'm always taking the free bookmarks that my libraries offer at the desk. I used to have about two dozen, but since I came home after graduating from college, I seem to have lost most of them. I only have about 6 library bookmarks now and a couple of fancier bookmarks with tassels that I bought. I have no idea what happened to all the others. I love to have a large variety because I like to try and match my bookmark to the cover of my book if I can (either by color or theme--example, if I'm reading a sci-fi novel I choose a bookmark with stars on it or something).

When I can't find a bookmark, I usually use a business card that I see lying around or my library receipt, but I tend to swap those out for real bookmarks as soon as I can.

Read-a-Thon Hours 1-6

I will probably not update every hour, but I'll try to update every 2 to 3 hours.

Hours 1-6:

Introductory Questionnaire:

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?
-North Carolina!
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?
-That's a tough one, but I think I'm going to go with The Christmas Ghost. It was a favorite of mine when I was a kid, and I'm really looking forward to reading it again after so many years.
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?
-I didn't actually plan out snacks this time, but my mind is already on the bean and cheese burrito I want to have for lunch (about four hours from now).
4) Tell us a little something about yourself!
-I graduated from the University of North Carolina in Asheville this May with a B.A. in Literature, and I am planning on going back to school next year to get my teaching license for Special Education!
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what's one thing you'll do differently today?
-Well, the fact that I'm starting this read-a-thon in the first hour is already different. Last year, I didn't begin the read-a-thon until mid-afternoon (around Hour 7).

Ugh, not off to a great start. I should have known better than to try and wake up early on a Saturday. I'm just not a morning person whatsoever. Though I managed to finish The Great Gatsby at the end of Hour 2, I was already feeling really tired, after never quite fully waking up. I decided to close my eyes for a little power  nap and ended up sleeping for six more hours! That's what I get for not sleeping well the night before, I guess  :/

Well, I should hopefully be good to go now, and maybe I'll even be able to stay up really late. I could even make it to Hour 24 and then forget the fiasco of this morning!

Pages Read: 70
Books Finished: The Great Gatsby

Dewey's 24-Hour Read-a-Thon October 2012

Well, it's been a few months since I've blogged, but after someone casually mentioned Dewey's Read-a-Thon on Goodreads a couple of weeks ago I knew I had to get back in the blogosphere and join! I loved participating in the read-a-thon last October and I was so disappointed I couldn't join in April due to finals. Last time, I didn't really start the read-a-thon until the sixth hour or so (maybe even later, I can't remember), but I want to try and start it on the first hour this time.

I came up with a list of books to choose from during the read-a-thon:

 I only have about 80 more pages to read in The Great Gatsby, so I'll probably start with that book. It'll be nice to say I finished a book in the first hour or so (even though it was really just 80 pages). I have also read over 200 pages of The Snow Child, but I'm not sure I'll actually pick it up during the read-a-thon to finish. It's a slow read for me, so it's not really the best choice for a read-a-thon, but I have it in my pile anyway in case I find myself too daunted at some point  today to start yet another book. Three books are rereads--the two In Death books and the Sweet Valley Twins A Christmas Ghost. This was my favorite SVT book when I was a kid and I've been wanting to reread it around the holidays for some time. I'm pretty sure I'll get to this book before the end. The two In Death books I should be able to finish in a couple of hours-they're always fast reads for me. I plan to save Fables and Reflections for last. I learned that graphic novels are always good to have around at the end of a read-a-thon after regular prose novels start to become blurry after so many hours of reading ;)