Tag Archives: Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?

Read-a-thon – Let’s Do This!

21 Apr

Note: I’ll be updating this same post all day so as to not create more posts in people’s readers. New updates will be on top!

Hour 20 – UPDATE #6

Well, it’s 3am and I think I’ve had it. I have to admit though, book #4 – Gold by Chris Cleave – is so good that I’ve been fighting sleep for the last half hour because I just want to read a little bit more. I do actually need to be functional tomorrow, so with that, I’m shutting down my read-a-thon for the night. Hopefully I’ll be back before 8am to do one final update, but considering that’s only 5 hours from now, I’m not holding my breath. I hope everyone had as successful a read-a-thon as I did.

Here’s my last update before I hit the sack:

Books: Why Be Happy When You Can Be Normal?, The Masque of the Red Death, Home and Gold (and some Angela’s Ashes on audio)
Pages: 764 + 45 minutes of audio
Update: I’m cooked. See everyone in the a.m.


Hour 16 UPDATE #5 + Rereading Mini-Challenge

I love this pace I’m keeping up, but the sleepiness is starting to hit me. But I’m back because I’ve finished book #3, Toni Morrison’s Home. Wow, what an incredibly powerful and utterly quiet book. I’m definitely going to need some time to process that one.

My mom has officially called it quits for the night, but even though I’ve finished my third book of the day, I’m feeling great, and I’m tempted to start my fourth, rather than pack it in.

Here’s where I’m at:

Books: Why Be Happy When You Can Be Normal?, The Masque of the Red Death, and Home (with a little bit of Angela’s Ashes on audio thrown in.
Pages: 622 + 45 minutes of audio
Update: I’ve decided to do a mini-challenge as a way to wake myself up a bit!

The Blue Stocking Society is hosting this hour’s mini-challenge and they’re asking about books we most enjoy rereading. I have to admit, I’m not a huge rereader. I always have so many new books on my TBR list that sometimes it feels like a waste of time to go back to books I’m already familiar with. That being said, rereads do have a cozy blanket-like feel to them, and wrapping yourself in something familiar like that can be so comforting. Which is probably why all my favorite rereads are books I loved as a kid: Matilda or The BFG by Roald Dahl, the Alice books by Phillis Reynolds Naylor, Jason and Marceline or Who Put That Hair In My Toothbrush? by Jerry Spinelli. It’s also probably why, at some point in the near future, I’ve got a reread of all seven Harry Potter novels planned. Sometimes you just need that cozy blanket feeling, right?


Hour 14 – UPDATE #4

I’ve just finished up my second book of the ‘thon. I’ve got chocolate chip cookies in the oven and I’m just about to start Toni Morrison’s Home.

But first the mid-event survey (even though I’m a touch late):

  1. How are you doing? Sleepy? Are your eyes tired? I’m actually feeling really great. Not sleepy at all, but I do think I’m going to have to move to a different spot soon. My reading chair is getting cramped.
  2. What have you finished reading? Why Be Happy When You Can Be Normal? and The Masque of the Red Death
  3. What is your favorite read so far? I really couldn’t choose. Both books are fantastic and so incredibly different from each other, there’s no way to compare.
  4. What about your favorite snacks? Earlier this afternoon, I had garlic hummus with pita and orange peppers, but I’ve got cookies fresh from the oven and those just might win.
  5. Have you found any new blogs through the readathon? If so, give them some love! Sadly, not a lot of blog hopping this time around. Maybe as the crowd thins a bit, I’ll poke around some new ones.

Total Pages: 519 + 45 minutes of audio, listened to Angela’s Ashes while running errands.


Hour 11 – UPDATE #3

Wow, I’m just speeding along. This stopping-every-three-hours thing seems to be working well for me, but as we move into the evening we’ll see how well that keeps up.

Since I last checked in, I’ve read 240 pages in Masque of the Red Death and I’ve got about 70 pages left to go. But first a quick errand before dinner! I hope everyone is having a great read-a-thon and I’ll be checking in soon.

Book: The Masque of the Red Death
Pages: 440
Update: I’m so happy I decided to switch to YA before tackling Toni Morrison. Home is a short book, but I needed an easy read between that and Winterson’s memoir. No mini-challenges, but I’m really feeling like I’m on a roll, and I’m not missing them that much. Let’s up this errand doesn’t mess that momentum up.


Hour 8 – UPDATE #2

I did it! Finished my first book, and right on schedule. And what a great read!

I’m taking a short break to do some cheering and then I think I’m moving on to Masque of the Red Death. How great is this cover, btw?

I need something quick and dirty before I jump into another heavy read, like Gold by Chris Cleave or Home by Toni Morrison.

Book: About to start The Masque of the Red Death
Pages: 200ish
Updates: My mom has officially joined the Read-a-thon party. She’s curled up on the couch with Divergent and, while I normally listen to quiet music while I read, sometimes the best kind of soundtrack is the whisper of mutually turning pages :). I’m definitely going to be feeling the sleepys soon though, so perhaps a change of scenery to the porch is in order.


Hour 6 – UPDATE #1

Well I haven’t updated as frequently as I’d like, but I did take a break at the 3-hour mark to shower, clean my bathroom, and throw my sheets in the wash, though I did the last two with a book in my hand (multitasking FTW!).

I’m also being really selective about the mini-challenges and have so far only entered one, aside from the intro post.

Here’s how I’m doing so far:

Book: Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?
Pages: Since I started, I’ve read about 120 pages. But clearly I’ve done a lot of other stuff too. I’m expecting to finish before I check in next time.
Updates: I’ve moved venues, from my apartment to my parent’s, and even stopped for some lunch (all while reading, of course – I wasn’t driving!) I’m going to try to put in a solid 90 minutes of reading and be back at 3pm EDT.


I’m actually starting Read-a-thon right on time this morning! I even set an alarm and everything – I’m so dedicated :).

This is the fourth or fifth read-a-thon I’ve done, I can’t even keep track anymore, but I’m looking forward to getting a lot of reading done.

I’ve got my first book ready, and I’ll be making my way downstairs for some coffee soon (as soon as my allergy meds kick in). I’m starting with Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? by Jeanette Winterson, since I’m already knee-deep in it.

To kick off read-a-thon, I thought I’d post a quote from that book:

So when people say that poetry is a luxury, or an option, or for the educated middle classes, or that it shouldn’t be read at school because it is irrelevant, or any of the strange and stupid things that are said about poetry and its place in our lives, I suspect that the people doing the saying have had things pretty easy. A tough life needs a tough language — and that is what poetry is. That is what literature offers — a language powerful enough to say how it is.

It isn’t a hiding place. It is a finding place.

With that as my inspiration for the day, let’s start with the Hour 1 intro:

  1. What fine part of the world are you reading from today? I’m reading from Washington, DC, within spitting distance of the Capitol.
  2. Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? I’m most looking forward to Home by Toni Morrison. I’ve got an egalley that is calling my name.
  3. Which snack are you most looking forward to? I love taking a break and making cookies during read-a-thon, but I stick to the premade dough so I can do it one-handed with a book in the other. I’ve got Tollhouse mini’s ready to go!
  4. Tell us a little something about yourself! I’m getting my Master’s in Publishing, and I’m about to start my third semester. It’s a ton of work but for a publishing/book nerd, I couldn’t be happier that I decided to go back to school.
  5. If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to? As I said before, I’ve done several read-a-thons now, and one thing I always struggle with is balancing the mini-challenges, tweeting, updating my blog, cheering and then somehow an hour’s passed and I haven’t read a single page. This year, I’m going to check in online once every three hours, for 15-30 minutes, and that way it’s on the schedule and I don’t feel overwhelmed or like I’m neglecting my fellow read-a-thoners or my blog.

I’ll be updating this one post all day, so CHEERLEADERS, please leave comments here; I appreciate the support!!