Sunday, October 23, 2011

Read-a-Thon End-of-Event Survey

I ended up bailing from the read-a-thon with a little over four hours to go. I think I could have forced myself to stay awake, but I also know that I wouldn't have enjoyed this morning's church services near as much as I did if I hadn't gotten some sleep. (I'm still going to need a nap after I eat lunch.)

Here is my end-of-event survey:

1. Which hour was most daunting for you?

Hour 21, when I decided to call it good, was the hardest hour for me. I just wanted to lay on the sofa and "pretend" to read!

2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?

In general, I think young adult novels are the best read-a-thon picks.

3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?

This was my ninth time participating in the Read-a-thon, and I thought it was great!

4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon?

Although I wouldn't have forgotten, I enjoyed getting the reminder email the day before the read-a-thon.

5. How many books did you read?

One and a part.

6. What were the names of the books you read?

The Stormchasers by Jenna Blum. Part of The Death Cure by James Dashner.

7. Which book did you enjoy most?

Both books were/are great!

8. Which did you enjoy least?

Not applicable.

9. If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice for next year’s Cheerleaders?

Not applicable.

10. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?

If at all possible, I will participate in the next read-a-thon! This is one of the few things I do that is just for me. I'd like to be a reader again - and I'm already thinking about going to the library for a part of the day, so I can separate myself from the household chaos around me.

Elapsed Time 19:00

Progress Report

Time Read: 7:30

Pages Read: 342. (That's about 46 pages per hour.)

Books Finished: 1. (The Stormchasers by Jenna Blum, which I had started yesterday. Now I'm reading The Death Cure by James Dashner.)

Time Blogged and/or Tweeted: 4:00

Frame of Mind: I'm sleepy - despite (or maybe because of) a half-hour nap. I think I'm too old to stay up all night! My fifteen-year-old daughter is keeping me company right now, which is nice. I guess time will tell how much more read-a-thon I've got in me.

Cans of Diet Coke with Lime Consumed:

Food Consumed:
One bowl of Lucky Charms. One bacon and egg sandwich. Two German chocolate brownies. A plum. Some chocolate licorice. One-and-a-half tomato sandwiches on wheat bread. Some spinach-artichoke dip with tortilla chips. A Mediterranean vegie sandwich and a cup of Thai curry soup. Two more German chocolate brownies. A bowl of microwave popcorn. Some elf sandwich cookies.

Money Raised for Charity: $9.50 (Help me increase the donation by leaving a comment! I'm donating 50 cents for every comment on a read-a-thon post.)

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Reading for Charity

"Education is the key to opportunity."

I'm reading to raise money for the Perpetual Education Fund by donating 50 cents for every comment I receive on a read-a-thon post, up to a total of $100. You can help by leaving a comment here - or on any of my other read-a-thon posts. Maybe you ought to try to guess the title in my book puzzle post!

Read-a-Thon Mid-Event Survey

Now that we're halfway through, we have a survey to complete:

1. What are you reading right now?

I'm ready to start something new, and I'm trying to decide between The Death Cure by James Dashner and Possession by Elana Johnson.

2. How many books have you read so far?

I have finished one: The Stormchasers by Jenna Blum.

3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon?

I've got so many to choose from, it's difficult to pick just one! My twelve-year-old son wants me to read Darth Paper Strikes Back. I'm also looking forward to reading This Lullaby - if I can stay awake that long.

4. Did you have to make any special arrangements to free up your whole day?

Unfortunately, life goes on in spite of the read-a-thon ... so I'm just dealing. Maybe one day I'll sequester myself for the read-a-thon and see how that goes!

5. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those?

Let's just say that I'm good at multi-tasking.

6. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far?

I am amazed how quickly the time is passing!

7. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?

Things seem to be running very well!

8. What would you do differently, as a Reader or a Cheerleader, if you were to do this again next year?

It would be helpful to plan an early bedtime the night before!

9. Are you getting tired yet?

I'm not really tired yet. But I haven't been solely concentrating on the read-a-thon either, so I guess we'll see what the next few hours bring.

10. Do you have any tips for other Readers or Cheerleaders, something you think is working well for you that others may not have discovered?

In my experience, graphic novels can be good picks for the wee hours of the night.

Elapsed Time 12:00

Progress Report

Time Read: 6:00

Pages Read: 280. (That's about 46 pages per hour.)

Books Finished: 1. (The Stormchasers by Jenna Blum, which I had started yesterday.)

Time Blogged and/or Tweeted: 2:30

Frame of Mind: It's hard to believe that the read-a-thon is half over! While I'd love to be reading more quickly, I'm doing a little multi-tasking and enjoying the day ...

Cans of Diet Coke with Lime Consumed:

Food Consumed:
One bowl of Lucky Charms. One bacon and egg sandwich. Two German chocolate brownies. A plum. Some chocolate licorice. One-and-a-half tomato sandwiches on wheat bread. Some spinach-artichoke dip with tortilla chips.

Elapsed Time 6:00

Progress Report

Time Read: 2:15

Pages Read: 110. (I am reading The Stormchasers by Jenna Blum.)

Books Finished: None yet.

Time Blogged and/or Tweeted: 2:00

Frame of Mind: I feel like I'm moving slowly this morning - and I took an almost two-hour break to pick up my produce from the Bountiful Baskets Food Co-op. But I've been enjoying this opportunity to read guilt-free on this beautiful fall morning.

Cans of Diet Coke with Lime Consumed:
1 1/2.

Food Consumed:
One bowl of Lucky Charms. One bacon and egg sandwich from the Sonic Drive-In. Two German chocolate brownies (which my daughter and I made yesterday).

Read-a-Thon Mini-Challenge

"Book Puzzle"
Hosted by Melissa at One Librarian's Book Reviews

This is the title of one of the books in my read-a-thon pile. Can you figure out what it is?

To Be Born

Introduction Meme

The traditional first activity of the read-a-thon is an introduction meme. Here goes:

Where are you reading from today?
The suburbs of Salt Lake City, Utah.

Three facts about me:
  • I learned to read with Dick and Jane when I was six years old, and I've not stopped since!

  • My reading goal for 2011 is 104 books (an average of two each week) - and I'm nearly on pace to achieve that goal.

  • I'm addicted to social media, and you can find me on Facebook, goodreads, and Twitter.
How many books do you have in your TBR pile for the next 24 hours?
I've got eighteen books picked out for the read-a-thon. If I finish those - just kidding! - or need something else to keep my attention, I've got plenty of others in the house. There is no chance I'll run out of reading material!

Do you have any goals for the read-a-thon (e.g., number of books, number of pages, number of hours, or number of comments on blogs)?
My goals are to actively participate in at least twelve hours of the read-a-thon (while still fulfilling some other commitments of the day and not totally exhausting myself) and to raise some money for the Perpetual Education Fund (by donating 50 cents for every comment I receive on a read-a-thon post, up to a total of $100).

Any advice for people doing this for the first time?
I recommend that everyone just do what seems fun and enjoy! No stressing allowed!

Elapsed Time 0:00

Here We Go!

I rarely get up on a Saturday morning before anyone else in the house and before the sun - but I am here for Dewey's Read-a-Thon for the ninth time, and I'm ready to read! Good luck to all the other read-a-thon participants, and a big thanks to the hosts, the cheerleaders, and all the other helpers!

If you're just stopping by and want to know more about what's happening, check out the read-a-thon blog or the Twitter feed.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

What I'm Going to Be Doing on Saturday

October 22

For more information,
check out the read-a-thon blog.

Saturday is the ninth occurrence of Dewey's 24-Hour Read-a-Thon! In the past I've often been able to clear my calendar for the day of the event, but this time I've got at least one other commitment that I need to fulfill. I'm also not sure, given my current health concerns, that I'm willing to go without sleep. Nonetheless, I'm looking forward to devoting a good part of my day to reading. I do hope that I'll be more successful than I was in April, when I ended up in the ER!

What about you? Are you read-a-thon-ing this week?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Because of Mr. Terupt by Rob Buyea

Published in 2010. 269 pages.

Because of Mr. Terupt is a tender middle grade novel about the impact a good teacher can have on his students. Told from alternating viewpoints, it is also about growing up, making choices to become a better person, and learning to forgive.

It's probably not a good idea for me to read a book that makes me sob while lying in bed without any tissues nearby!

Author Rob Buyea's website is here. Because of Mr. Terupt was a 2010 Cybils Finalist and is a 2012 Beehive Award Nominee. I was thrilled to discover that a sequel, titled Mr. Terupt Falls Again, is to be released in the fall of 2012.


Friday, October 07, 2011

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand
by Helen Simonson

Published in 2010. 358 pages.

Delightful! A little slower reading than I had wished, but Major Pettigrew is such an endearing character, and he had so much wisdom for me to absorb. Here are some Pettigrew-isms I enjoyed:

Life isn't all about flashy parties and meeting rich people.
One really shouldn't have to bargain with one's family like a used-car salesman.
Life does often get in the way of one's reading.
There is nothing more corrosive to character than money.
We must refuse to imagine [that it's too late] and concentrate only on the next step and then the next. We do what we can do, and the rest is God's problem.
The solution is to make things right, or at least to work every day to do so.

And here's a quote from another character that I found quite thought-provoking:
If faith is worth no more than the price of a small shop in an ugly village, what is the purpose of my life - of any life?

For the context of all those statements, you just have to read the book yourself!

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand was a Salt Lake County Reader's Choice Nominee last year, but, unfortunately, I didn't make the time to read it then. It was also the August pick for the "book lunch girls" (aka Natalie's Book Club). I wasn't able to attend the meeting due to another commitment, but I'm so glad I read the book.


Sunday, October 02, 2011

A Six-Word Review of
Where She Went by Gayle Forman

Published in 2011. 264 pages.
(Sequel to 2009's If I Stay, which I reviewed here.)

Beautiful writing.
Evocative storyline.
Tears flowed.