Sunday, October 18, 2009

Sunday Salon 19 - READ-A-THON!!!!!

I'm utterly ashamed to admit this, but I'm plagiarizing my own posts--if you remember my Sunday Salon on Why I Love the Read-a-thon, some of this will look familiarish. If you're new--yippee for hopefully unfamiliar material from me. :) Life has just been too hectic this week to stress about coming up with an entirely new post. And yes, everything is fine. Life is great. Just busy. You know how that goes.

So, without further ado.

What is the read-a-thon? The 24-hour Read-a-thon is just that--an excuse to read for 24 hours guilt free. A few years ago, Dewey from The Hidden Side of the Leaf hosted the first blogging read-a-thon. If memory serves correctly, this is the fifth read-a-thon. Dewey passed away nearly a year ago, but the read-a-thon now lives on in her memory.

Who participates? Anyone! Although I'm guessing the participant list is mostly made up of bloggers, I've seen a lot of bloggers talking about their family members who are joining them. Really, it's a great event for everyone. A great excuse to read!

How do you participate? Well, by reading silly goose! For 24 hours. Ok, you don't have to read for the full 24 hours, and you don't even need to stay up for the full 24 hours--your level of participation is up to you! There are lots of mini-challenges to participate in and of course lots of readers to cheer for when you need a break from the book. The first step is going to the read-a-thon website and signing up.

Where do you participate? At home, at the coffee shop, in the park, in the car (audio?), at the library. Really any place you can read a book. Although, access to a computer is really helpful. The start times for the 'thon are listed on the read-a-thon website.

Why should you participate? Because it's good old fashioned fun. No seriously! When my friend Laura asked me to do the read-a-thon with her two summers ago I told her "that doesn't sound like fun at all." Oh my gosh how wrong I was! I signed up for the 'thon that day and had the time of my life. I'm addicted. Hooked. Can't get enough. It is more fun that you can possibly imagine. Haha! Plain silly no sleep drink too much Mountain Dew and eat too much sugar kind of fun.

Need more convincing? (yes, this might be the longest post ever).


Trish's Top 10 Reasons to Join (Shamelessly taken from previously mentioned post)

1. Being able to reenact those teenaged years when you could stay up for 24 hours with no worries

2. Reading and blogging for 24 hours without the guilt that you should be doing something else

3. Meeting and connecting with other bloggers all over the world who are doing the same crazy thing you are

4. Mini-challenges: a great way to give your brain a rest after a long stretch of reading

5. Snacks. Junk food. Caffeine. Whatever your poison, I know I'm not the only one who stores up on yummy foods to eat throughout the day and night

6. Remembering Dewey, the fabulous blogger who started this incredible community builder two years ago

7. Reading for a cause--I'm not sure how I'll work it out this time, but I'll be donating to The Salvation Army

8. It's the silliest fun one could possibly imagine that involves reading and blogging (yes, you know I'll be posting that Harry Potter Puppets video--it has been requested again)

9. Accomplishing what you thought was impossible--reading more than you expected and staying up later than imaginable

10. Hours of cuddle time with your favorite cuddle-buddy (for me, Maggie)



Read-a-thon Tips (yes, again shameless taken...forgive me but the original post was just so...well, I can't say it any better now than I did then!)

The Books:

**Keep a stack of books handy. If something doesn't catch your attention immediately you can quickly move on to something else

**Pick books that are short and don't require a ton of attention. Put that War and Peace back on the shelf...right now! Eva has created a big long list of books that are sure to keep you reading through the wee hours.

**Include some Young Adult titles in your stack--they provide a perfect break from heavier reads and they are sure to keep your full attention. (Tip from Laura)

Before the Read-a-thon:

**Either pre-prepare some meals or have quick and easy things on hand. Don't want to spend time cooking! (Hence all the yummy snacks--Jodie suggests a combination of sweet and salty snacks for variety)

**If you will be doing blog updates (which I recommend!!), make a template beforehand so you can just plug in numbers and quickly post

**Get all of your weekend obligations like cleaning out of the way early. You'll be too tired on Sunday unless you are a superhero (which I don't doubt some of you are).

**Let people (friends/family) know ahead of time that you'll be participating in a 24-hour read-a-thon so that they don't think you fell off the face of the earth when they try to get ahold of you (tip from Joanne

**Laura and I created a spreadsheet to help us keep track of minutes and pages--very handy! We also have a column for the hour, our time zone, and the read-a-thon time zone, time spent blogging, mini-challenges entered, bloggers visited, etc.

During the Read-a-thon:

**Don't overload on the caffeine. While in small doses it can be OK, it might make you jittery and then crash. Especially if you aren't used to it.

**Take some time out of your reading to join a mini-challenge or do some cheerleading. If you spend the whole 24 hours reading you'll certainly get a lot accomplished, but you'll miss out on the community building aspect.

**Don't torture yourself. If you can't make it anymore, go to bed!

**Keep your camera charged and handy so you can include fun pictures of you, your books, your cat, your food, your reading spot, etc. (Tip from Laura)

(please fill me in with your tips, too!! I'd love to add them to the list)


The Stack:

Read-a-thon Stack Yes, it's teetering. And as I was trying to snap the picture I noticed I had the camera on video setting. It's a short video, but you can tell Maggie approves:

What is YOUR favorite part of the read-a-thon? Any special memories? What are your fears? What tips do you have to share? Have I twisted your arm and convinced you to join or did you already sign up weeks ago? Read-a-thon!Read-a-thon!Read-a-thon! :D

Yayyyy Read-a-thon! Sign up here. And please, also sign up to cheerlead. Cheerleading is SO vital. Readers need cheerleaders. And you can totally do both--I will be!

Other Trish tidbits:

Today is the last day to sign up for the signed copy of The Lace Reader

I started up cake decorating class again. We spent so much time prepping the cake that I didn't actually get a lot of decorating done, but the orange blobs are lions (done at the end when I was beat tired), the gray are elephants (my favorites) and the green are crocodiles. I took it to work and it got devoured. Not the best work I could have done but it sure was yummy (I think you can click to enlarge).

Trish Safari Cake
My apologies for being a lousy blogger lately. I did get three posts up this week but none of them were book reviews. Part of me is kind of embarrassed by this but I have been having a tough time keeping up. I've been subscribing to a lot of blogs lately but the drawback of this is that I can't comment as much on everyone's blogs. I'm struggling with trying to figure out if it's better to comment a lot at a few places or a little at a lot of places. And I've been terrible with emails and responding to comments on this blog. I really really want to get back to commenting back, but I'm having troubles lately. Please know I love getting your comments and I read all of them even if I don't respond quickly (or lately at all). I fear that people will think that I've snubbed them for not responding or for not visiting and that's the last thing I want. How do you keep up? Or do you even worry about it?

Sorry for the world's longest post. I had a lot to say, I guess. Well, and I'm just so damn excited for the 'thon. I really need this. I haven't been making time for reading the past few months, so it will be great to have a whole 24 hours devoted to it.

Hoping you had a great weekend,


Eva said...

Love your teetering stack Trish! :D You know how I feel about the read-a-thon!! And those cake elephants are SO cute!

I think we're all in a confusing blogging place right now, lol! Visiting, commenting, reviewing, oh my!

Jodie said...

Trish you made those crocodiles? So cool, I thought they were like professionally made plastic cake toppers! Suggestion - make a cake to eat during read-a-thon. 'The Guernsey Literary and Potatoe Peel Pie Society' is a perfect choice for read-a-thon, light and quick letters, filled with lots of wonderful human emotion

I have to get stacking up on my treats for read-a-thon, really want Millie's cookies but as they're fresh I'll have to try and buy them just one day in advance.

Ana S. said...

Ha! Yes, I can definitely tell that Maggie approves :D I love your Book Tower, and as usual, your enthusiasm!

And no need to apologize, Trish. I've been having a lot of trouble keeping up lately too. I'm sure everyone will understand, and no one will think you're snubbing them! (I worry about that A LOT too, though.)

kml said...

Ooooh, fantastic! I'm excited to read your thoughts on Hunger Games and Catching Fire - I just devoured them both this past week.

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

Trish...this post was so helpful to someone like me who has not participated before...thanks

So glad to see your cat approves of what you selected for next week..LOL

Molly said...

I am not sure that there is such a thing as 'balance' in life. I also struggle with my teaching life, my family life, and my blogging life. Some weeks blogging wins - other weeks it loses. I think you do a great job of posting and commenting on a regular basis :)

I love that your cat is enthralled with your reading pile. It looks like you some great books stacked up! I also have Catching Fire and The Boy in the Striped Pajamas as possibilities.

Frances said...

A confessed plagiarist! I love it. So wish I could participate in this but family life makes it nearly impossible. But with your encouragement, I will travel over to the site to see how I could do a mini challenge or be a cheerleader. Although I have no idea what either of those things are! lol. Happy reading!

Amanda said...

Your tips are a million times better than mine!

I love that short video. I love that your cat is cuddling the books. :D

Anonymous said...

Maggie is adorable!! I have Catching Fire and The Hunger Games in my read-a-thon pile too.

Thoughts of Joy said...

What a fabulous stack! There are a couple that I loved, a couple that I thought were very good, a couple that I just thought were okay and a couple that I want to read. :) It'll be fun to see what you choose and how far you get. Happy Reading, Trish! I hope it is a very productive and exciting day for you.

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

*Eva - I hate being confused about blogging! But it has just gotten so big, you know? Will we be getting more info on cheerleading this week?

*Jodie - Yup, everything except for the pretzel tree truck is frosting that I piped! :) Maybe you can just heat up the Millie's cookie a little before devouring?

*Nymeth - Sadly I think I'm finally coming to terms with the fact that I just can't keep up. And I hate that but blogging can't overrun my life. :( Even though it's a big part of know what I mean.

*kml - I'm hoping Hunger Games and Catching Fire are good 'thon books! Glad you liked them.

*Diane - I'm so glad you're participating, Diane! I can't stress enough how much fun it is (or did you get that from the post) ;)

*Molly - Balance. Ick. :) I wish there were such a thing but something's always gotta give. I look forward to hearing what you think of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas!

*Frances - Does it make it better that I'm plagiarizing my own work?? :) Actually, except for my top 10 and the tips, everything else is new. Cheerleading is just that--hopping over to the readers' blogs and giving them encouragement. Lots of fun!

*Amanda - LOL--the tips are from April so I've had some time to think and tweak. :) And I had some help from other bloggers. The kind of stuff you had on yours will be the disclaimers I include right before the 'thon--the verification, commenting back, reading non-thon posts, etc.

*Lola - Yay! I've heard HG and CF will be great read-a-thon books.

*Joy - I know for sure I'll be reading The Boy in the Striped Pajamas because I promised my brother I'd read it. Other than that, who knows! :) Any you'd recommend?

CJ said...

Great post and I really wish I could take part in the readathon but I'm working the entire weekend. I'll try to drop by and do a little cheerleading but if Saturday is anything like yesterday, I won't have much time.

I love the video of the kitty and I think the cake is great, especially the 'phants!


Darlene said...

You're too funny - shamelessly using your post from the last time. Thanks for my morning laugh.

Too cute with Maggie giving a hug to your books-she has the right idea. Buddy glared at mine when I set them on the bed last night. Your cake is great. I'm just not creative at all-I couldn't come up with something like that even if I did try. lol.

As for reading blogs and commenting, I've been bad as well. Since Buddy got sick I just haven't managed to get my mojo back. I did however delete a whole pile of blogs yesterday. I realized I'm reading and commenting on blogs that don't even visit me. I'd just rather spend my time on those who do. So, I'm still trying to find some balance. I'm sure we will someday Trish.

Have a great Sunday.

Nicole (Linus's Blanket) said...

Maggie is so cute. We'll see how approving she is when you're ignoring her to read your books.

Paxton said...

Dude, Trish, I was so looking forward to the Read-a-thon this weekend but I have my 10K that day. I had promised my brother-in-law I'd do it before you asked me a few weeks ago.

I only realized right this very moment that they are on the same day. :-(

I'm so bummed.

samantha.1020 said...

I'm looking forward to hearing about what you read during the readathon Trish. And I'll definitely stop by and cheer you on at some point. I'm not participating myself (work and all that not so fun stuff) but I will be watching everyone's progress :) I haven't read Catching Fire yet so I'll be waiting to hear your thoughts on that one!

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

A little at a lot of places, I think. I love comments, no matter how terse or how insignificant.

Hope to see you at Readathon!

Lisa said...

I'm tired just reading that post.

I SO want to read. I'll probably try to read off and on all day and then at night when the boys crash.

Vasilly said...

You have a great stack but I have to warn you about The Hunger Games: once you read it, not many books can compare to it. Try to read it at night. You will love it! It'll keep you up better than coffee!

I'm so glad you've joined the readathon again.

My opinion on blogs: read and comment on the posts you really love.I try not to follow too many.

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

*CJ - Can you just pretend that you're working and sneak in a few pages? :P Aren't those elephants cute?? :)

*Dar - Shameful isn't it? Actually, about half of it is new material, but I couldn't have said the rest better than I did the first time. :) The cake isn't hard--and I don't have a creative bone in my body! You'd be surprised what you can do. And yes, I'd rather spend time with bloggers who I care about but I also would love to make new friends, too.

*Nicole - Actually, Maggie has been sadly missing out on her cuddle time lately, so I think she'll love the read-a-thon! :)

*Paxton!! - Ok, solution is to start reading after you're done with your race! You'll still have the rest of the evening, right? And you'll be all pumped up from the race. Even if you can just partcipate part of the time you'll have a blast.

*Samantha - I'm not sure if I'll get to Catching Fire or not--depends on how the rest of the stack goes. :) Hope to see you pop in here and there--you've been a great cheerleader in the past.

*Debnance - It's easier for me to get around to your blog since you're like me and don't post as often--I don't know how some of these bloggers have time to post every day or even twice a day!!

*Lisa - LOL--it made me tired writing it! And I need you during the night!! I hope you can swing at least a little but understand if you can't.

*Vasilly - I've signed up for cheerleading this time so hopefully that will help with the stress of trying to read as much as possible and blogging here and there. And Yay about Hunger Games. I'll leave it to later in the night.

Anonymous said...

I think we all need blogging assistants. Or housekeepers.

Debi said...

Anyone who knows you even a little bit knows that you would never snub anyone, Trish!!! You know, I really think a lot of us have been feeling that crush lately. :( And I hate it...I hate not being able to keep up with everyone. But I'm not sure there's a answer. At least no easy one.

I love that clip of Maggie with "the pile"! Did she knock it over? :D I think she's ready to get started, too, isn't she?

Love your cake!!!! I love the elephants and the lions, but oh my, those crocodiles are my faves! SOOOO CUTE!

Louise said...

I am going to participate in the readathon for the first time and am really looking forward to it. And I noticed two book in your stack which I hope you'll get to because they're awesome: Hunger Games I + II.

Melody said...

I enjoyed reading this, Trish! Did I tell you I love reading rambling posts? :D

How I wish I'm able to join in the fun for read-a-thon... anyway I'll be cheering you all in spirit! :D

You've a lovely haul there, and as always Maggie is adorable!

Literary Feline said...

It has been a long while since I stayed up for 24 hours. LOL Those are definitely good reasons to join the read-a-thon. I love the photo of your cat with the books. :-) My cats like to rub themselves on my stacks of books too.

No need to apologize for not being able to blog or comment much recently. I think we all struggle with the same issues. And yes, I do worry. Sometimes to the point of deciding I want to stay away from the computer all together. LOL I'm not sure that's the best approach.

I hope you have a great week, Trish!

bermudaonion said...

You are well prepared for the read-a-thon - a great stack of books and a cuddly cat!

Lisa said...

Thanks for all of the great tips! I'm still on the fence, but it does sound like so much fun!

Kailana said...

That is a great stack of books! Enjoy!

Sheila (bookjourney) said...

I am looking forward to the read a thon as well! :)

Alice said...

I wish all who are participating a very enjoyable time doing this!

Anonymous said...

The cake is awesome.

I'm looking forward to the read-a-thon too. It'll be the first time I'm going to participate.

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

*Softdrink - Wouldn’t that be awesome to have a blogging assistant? I could totally deal with that!

*Debi - I think the solution for me is to keep up with less people. I’d rather have good relationships with a few rather than just show my face around a lot. You know? Is Maggie a doll? I can’t wait to cuddle with her ALL Saturday! :) She did not knock the pile over, but I did have to move it to the floor.

*Louise - Yay for the read-a-thon! You’ll have so much fun this weekend and I’ll be sure to come cheer you on!

*Melody - LOL—glad you like rambling posts because I’ve had a lot of those lately. Hope to see you read-a-thoning with us one day when your girls are older. :)

*Lit Feline - I always laugh when I lend out books because it’s inevitable there is cat hair on the edge of the pages. :) And when I get really behind in blogging I tend to stay away from the computer too. Makes it difficult to come back, but I always do. I think a lot of us are feeling the pressure of how big book blogging has become! It’s just a matter of adjustment, I think.

*Bermuda - Books and cats (and snacks). The formula to a great read-a-thon, I think. Will you be joining??

*Lisa - Get off that fence and join!! It will be the most bookish fun you’ve ever had. :)

*Kailana - I wish you could join with us. :( I hope you have a great week.

*Sheila - Yay! The read-a-thon will be so much fun. I hope you have a great stack of books. ;)

*Alice Teh - Will you not be doing the read-a-thon? :( Thanks for the wishes—it will be a crazy day!

*Carol - You’ll have such a great time! Remember to get as organized as possible before hand to help you stay on top of things on Saturday.

Thoughts of Joy said...

Yep - The Guernsey Literary and Potato Pie Society and The Hunger Games.

Paxton said...

Aha! I may try to make that work.


Bookfool said...

You almost have me convinced. Almost.

Michelle said...

Cute cake! It looks delish! I would say that it sounds like you love to read lots of blog and really like to hop around from one to another, so I would say for you it might be better to comment a little on a lot of blogs. The reading list for the thon looks great! I have been wanting to read Cause Celeb, and I have really enjoyed Helen Fielding. I will be looking forward to your review on that! You going to IHOP again this time for the Rooty Tooty fresh and Fruity? I too need to get back into the swing of the reading thing. I am missing my books! :(

claire said...

I just finished Guernsey.. it's perfect for the readathon! So fluttery and light. :)

My fave thing about the readathon is the excitement going on around everyone's blogs. It's exhilarating to be a part of it.

joanna said...

I also think that Guernsey is perfect for the read-a-thon - a wonderful, quick read. I can't participate this time, but am looking forward to hearing about everyone's great reads!

Suey said...

I like your shortened nickname for the event... 'thon. Great! And I have to say, I think I'm going to still feel a bit guilty for forsaking all other responsibilities, but I'll try not to!

Dana said...

I'm reading for a cause too. Juvenile diabetes research. My best friend's 4 year old daughter was just diagnosed. Looking forward to reading some great books in honor of her!

Ronnica said...

I wish I could have Hunger Games in my stack for the Read-a-thon, but it hasn't come in at the library for me. I hope it does in the next couple of days!

Anonymous said...

I can hardly wait! Only 3 more nights of waiting... Only? That's a lot! ;)

It's smart of you to let Maggie approve your books. I should go and ask Juno and Ringo if my pile is OK...

I just got 2 more tips out of your post: keeping my camera at hand (!) and making a draft format for quick updates. Actually, I like the button on top. Is it yours? Can I use it?

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

*Joy - Will definitely get to Hunger Games—hopefully Potato Peel Pie, too.

*Paxton - I hope to see you and a whole bunch of awesomeness on Saturday. ;)

*Bookfool - Almost convinced? Aren’t you mildly insomniatic anyway? And it’s a great excuse to down that Mountain Dew. Still not convinced? Boo.

*Michelle - Laura’s out of town! Scott will be out of town! My mom will be out of town! I’ll be all alone. :( I asked Brooke if she wanted to go to IHOP with me and read but she didn’t think that sounded like fun, so no Rooty Tooty Fresh and Fruity for me. Wish you could read-a-thon with me!

*Claire - Based on what you and Joy say, I’ll have to keep Guernsey near the top of the list! And yes, I love the excitement of the read-a-thon, too!

*Joanna - LOL—a third recommendation for Guernsey! :) I’m sorry you can’t participate, but I hope you have a lovely Saturday.

*Suey - I try to get all of my responsibilities done before the read-a-thon (aka ‘thon) so that I don’t even have to think about the dishes or laundry or ironing…I don’t have kids, but husband, etc. And there’s always Sunday...after recuperation.

*Dana - That’s such a great cause, Dana! Isn’t it great knowing that you’ll be doing something you love and helping make a difference? Love that!

*Ronnica - Hope you get Hunger Games!! I actually broke down and bought it at Borders with a 40% coupon—just couldn’t wait.

*Gnoegnoe - Yeeeeeeeee!!! :D Can't you just feel the excitement? I can't sleep at night I'm so excited. The button was from a few years ago--I didn't make it. Use it! And the camera bit is fun. It's nice to see something on people's posts other than just their numbers. The read-a-thon for me is all about having fun and being silly.

Cindy said...

Great stacks!

Veens said...

Trish, high time you stop saying sorry about long posts.. if it si not long it is not Trish who is writing ;) Everybody knows that :P

Fun post as always.. Read-a-thon.. is FUN! and ok I read through everything once again ")

I love the look of that cake... you can send some to me :) :)

And the stack is nice... i wish i could do this too :)

Jeanette said...

Just as I had come to terms with not participating in the read-a-thon I read this post. Thanks! :-P
I so want to and was thinking I would because I am up half the night with the baby anyway, right? Only I am worried about recovery. I won't be able to just sleep Sunday away because I'll have to be up with the baby.
You have some great books in your stack! I've read several of them and there are also at least two that I started but never finished.
Have fun!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this fantastic post. you are pushing me to sign up. I am going to decide by tonight! I think I want to do it because it sounds like it's a lot of fun to be a part of the whole thing. I have tons of books around to read/ some short story collections and some books on CD that I took out of the library that aren't that long (5 hours). It's the snacking part but I'm an insomniac lately anyway.

Serena said...

I love read-a-thon...this is my second one. I can't wait to get started. I like the advice, though it does look familiar. LOL

Anna said...

The Girl and I will be at Serena's for the readathon this time around. Thank goodness she got better in time! I really wanted to participated.

I hope you get to Guernsey. That's the one book I finished during the last readathon!

Diary of an Eccentric

Bellezza said...

I am ridiculously, over the top excite about this Saturday.

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

*Cindy - Thanks! :)

*Veens - LOL--won't worry about long posts in the future. I wish you were reading with us tomorrow!

*Jeanette - Ooooh, I wish you could join! Just craddle that baby with one arm and hold your book in the other!

*Writergal - I hope you decided to sign up for the read-a-thon! It is seriously more fun than you can imagine. :)

*Serena - Hey--don't attack the plagiarism. Don't fix what wasn't broken in the first place, right? :)

*Anna - I'm so glad The Girl is feeling well enough to participate! And so jealous that you'll be doing it with Serena. Have fun!

*Bellezza - Squeeeeeeee! It will be even more exciting tomorrow!