Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Teaser Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along!

Salander looked at her watch and realized that although she was sitting perfectly still, in the shad, she was drenched with sweat. It was 10:30.

--From The Girl Who Played With Fire, Stieg Larsson (pg. 16)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Read-a-Thon Wrap Up

How much fun was that!

I seriously slept like all day today, even though I took liberal naps during the Thon. Reading and cheering is hard work!

I didn't keep track of exact time and page numbers because I was cheering and reading and because I read off of my kindle. But I wrote down was I was generally doing each hour.

Hour 1:
  • Started Beyond the Grave--made it to chapter 8.
  • Cheered on blogs 86-88
  • Posted Hour 1 update.
  • Ate a birthday brownie.
Hour 2:
  • Continued reading Beyond the Grave--made it to chapter 12.
  • Cheered on blogs 89-93.
  • Napped (it was a late night for me)
Hour 3:
  • Napped. Oops.
Hour 4:
  • Participated in mini-challenge
  • Ate an Asiago cheese bagel that my roommate bought me. So good.
  • Continued reading Beyond the Grave--made it to chapter 22.
Hour 5:
  • Cheered blogs 94-115
  • Finished Beyond the Grave
  • Posted update
Hour 6:
  • Cheered on Twitter
  • Posted update
  • Started Magyk (on my kindle dx) at location 3594, read to 4237
Hour 7:
  • Read Magyk, 4237 to 4515
Hour 8:
  • Napped.
Hours 9 and 10:
  • Read and finished Magyk
  • Cooked and ate part of Red Baron pizza.
Hour 11:
  • Started and read 89 pages of The Black Circle
  • Posted update
Hour 12:
  • Finished The Black Circle
Hour 13:
  • Posted update
  • Cheered on Twitter
  • Cheered blogs 116-129
Hour 14:
  • Cheered blogs 130-135
  • Visited readers of the hour
  • Started Flyte on kindle dx, read to chapter 7
Hour 15:
  • Napped
Hour 16:
  • Cheered blogs 176-204
  • Started The Strain
  • Ate the rest of the pizza
Hour 17:
  • Read The Strain
  • Posted update
Hours 18 to 21:
  • Made the mistake of moving to my bed, and zonked out.
Hour 22:
  • Started cheering blogs, then cheered all the awake readers that commented on the official blog
  • Cheered on Twitter
Hour 23 and 24:
  • Read to location 1891 of The Strain (on kindle)
  • Finished up by cheering on Twitter
  • End-of-event post
I think it was a success!

Read-a-Thon Hour 24: The Final Countdown

Even though I slept, I'm hurtin! My eyes want to be shut! I'm reading The Strain. I'm having mixed feelings about it. The idea is compelling enough to push me through it --I really want to know what happened to those people on the plane--but, MY GOD, the writing is terrible. Hopefully I'll stick it out when the read-a-thon isn't compelling me to keep reading.

End of Event Meme

1. Which hour was most daunting for you?

This hour, even though I slept.

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

I don't know about high-interest, but I think the 39 Clues books are great for the thon. Short, sweet, and action packed.

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

Trish had a great comment for the cheering squad---to have readers post that they are awake during "dead" hours so that the cheerleaders know who to focus on.

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

It was my first time participating, but I thought the cheering went really well.

5. How many books did you read?

I read two, finished one I had already started, and started two others.

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

Beyond the Grave, The Black Circle, and Magyk

7. Which book did you enjoy most?

Hmmm...they were all about the same...middle grade reading!

8. Which did you enjoy least?

I enjoyed them all.

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

I don't have any advice! I was so surprised at how time consuming cheering was!

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 participate again. This event is so amazing. I'll probably read and cheer.

Read-a-Thon Hour 23

Well I slept through hours 18 to 21, but I cheered in hour 22 to those who were still awake, so I'm counting that as a WIN!

I'm going to spend the last two hours reading The Strain on my Kindle! Here's to hoping the suspense will keep me going!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Read-a-Thon Hour 17

Wow I can't believe we're on hour 17 now! I've spent the last few hours mostly napping and cheering. The cheering isn't going as quickly as I would like it, I'm not covering nearly as many blogs as I'd like to, but I'm trying to read a least one post on each one, so that slows me down. I've also done some cheering on Twitter as well, but there are just soooo many people tweeting it's very difficult to keep up!

I started Flyte the second book in the Septimus Heap series, but I'm seriously tempted to switch to The Strain as I think a scary book might help keep me awake.

I'm pretty sure my roommate is over me lording over the living room, so I've moved into my bedroom which is a VERY DANGEROUS place to be this time of night. But hopefully, I've napped enough today to be able to do some cheering in the later hours. (That or I'll fall asleep on the computer, drooling).

Read-a-Thon Hour 13

Halfway done! And as @bookladysblog tweeted: Ohhh we're half way there! Ohhh reading in my chair!!

I just finished the 5th book in the 39 clues series: The Black Circle. And I have to say, I really enjoyed it. It so cool that this series is written by all different authors and yet doesn't feel that way at all. The mystery is really picking up! I wish the next one was out! I'll probably save them up again for the next read-a-thon because they are perfect reads for this.

Mid-Event Survey:
1. What are you reading right now?

In between books at this moment. I'm trying to decide between the second Septimus Heap book or something else entirely.

2. How many books have you read so far?

I've read two books (Beyond the Grave and The Black Circle) and finished Magyk which I had started earlier this week.

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

I'm looking forward to starting The Girl on Who Played With Fire, even though I don't have hopes of finishing it.

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

Nope, just didn't make plans. I'm lucky, I don't have many weekend responsibilities.

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

Nothing major. Just naps, but I'm tooootally ok with that!

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

How much fun cheerleading is! I didn't do this last year, but I'm loving it now.

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

No clue. I love that they organized the cheerleaders though.

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

I think I would do what I did this time, take it easy, instead of what I did last time, which was to approach it as a a perfectionist's challenge to actually read as much as humanly possible during the entire 24 hours.

9. Are you getting tired yet?

I'm good now because I've already napped a few times.

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?

Not really. Just have fun!

Read-a-Thon Hour 11

In hours 9 and 10, I finished reading Maygk, the first book in the Septimus Heap books. I have to say, I found it quite enjoyable. It got off to a slow start, but really picked up for me in the end. I'm very happy that Amazon has the rest available for the Kindle. I might start another one today.

I think I'm going to keep reading now, and save my cheering for the later hours when the readers' enthusiasm begins to wane. I'm not exactly sure what I'm going to start reading now, I've got so many good books to read!

Read-a-Thon Hour 6

WHEW! I just spent the last 40 minutes cheering and I still haven't finished my first group of readers! I didn't have any goals for cheering when I started, but now I'm feeling the urge to hit everyone! I might see how close I can get!

I finished my first book in Hour 6: Beyond the Grave, Jude Watson (#4 in 39 Clues series). I really enjoyed it. These are great books for the read-a-thon. I have the #5 book, which I might pick up next. But I'm going to browse my TBR before i decide.

Read-a-Thon Hour 5

It's now Hour 5 of the Read-a-Thon. I'm still working on Beyond the Grave, as I've been mixing up reading and cheering time. I also ate an Asiago cheese bagel that my roommate got me from Panera (YUM!).

I took a nap, because I couldn't keep my eyes open. (Mornings are bad for me.) I participated in a mini-challenge over at Trish's blog and put myself on that google map, which was a REALLY COOL idea!

I've cheered on a few blogs, but I think I'm going to spend a good portion of this hour getting through the rest of my 85 blogs for this section. Then I'll get back to reading for a bit!

Read-a-Thon Hour 1

So Hour 1 is almost over and I'm already having so much fun! I've started Beyond the Grave the 4th book in the 39 Clues series. For some reason there aren't any page numbers around where I'm at in the book, but I made it to Chapter 8. I've also visited a few blogs to cheer readers on! I'm glad I decided to to that this time. It's so much fun!

Hour 1 Meme:

Where are you reading from today: Specifically in my recliner under my Snuggie. :) I'm in Arlington, VA!

3 facts about me: (1) I just turned 26 this past Tuesday! (2) My favorite (currently) TV show is Psych and (3) I work for the U.S. Senate!

How many books do you have in your TBR pile for the next 24 hours? I only have two specifically picked out: Beyond the Grave and The Black Circle, the 4th and 5th books of the 39 clues series. Other than that I've left it open to whatever is on my bookshelf or whatever I want to download onto my Kindle!

Do you have any goals for the read-a-thon (i.e. number of books, number of pages, number of hours, or number of comments on blogs)? My only goal this time is to participate! I signed up for 2 hours of cheerleading, which is something I didn't do last time and I'm really excited about it.

If you're a veteran read-a-thoner, any advice for people doing this for the first time? I think there are two approaches to this: Either go BIG and try to read the 24 hours, or just try to participate. I tried the go BIG approach last time and had lots of fun---I suggest having a plan for recording process and a template for your posts. I'm just participating generally this time, so my plan is to just take it easy and meet some new bloggers.

Read-a-Thon Prep

Ok, I'm ready and raring to go.

I've got books, water, notebook and pen, cheerleading team assignment, and a blue read-a-thon snuggie purchased by my roommate especially for this read-a-thon.

Let's do this.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Dewey's 24-hour Read-a-Thon

YES! The read-a-thon is back! Earlier this year, I participated and raised around 300 bucks for a charity. I was dying of allergies that day, so I didn't read as much as I think I could have. This time, I can't commit to reading the entire day, as I have so much school work to do, but I'm going to read as much as I can.

I don't know yet what all I'm going to put into my TBR pile. I have the last two 39 Clues books that I know I'll crank out pretty quickly. Then I think I may work on the Setimus Heap books, since I need to power through those to review the most recent book. I have TONS of read-a-thon worthy books on my shelf and of course my KINDLE(!!!) will be charged and ready to go in a pinch. I think I'll also take the time to work on some of my lit mags. I'm really quite excited. It will be a day of reading and napping. Can't ask for a better Saturday.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Happy Birthday to MEEEEEE

I'm officially 26 today.
Time for some (froggy-like) monkey business.

*pic via Cake Wrecks

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Reading Update: 10-1-09

I'm still not finishing any books, as I'm skipping around different authors to try and keep up with my short story class.

Here's what I'm in the midst of for class:

1. The Collected Tales of Nikolai Gogol
2. Great Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe
3. Stories (Anton Chekhov)
4. The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway
5. Dubliners, James Joyce

Whew! I'm also working on The Pine Barrens by John McPhee, but that's for my own benefit and it typically takes backseat.

Gogol: I've enjoyed Gogol's stories for the most part. I definitely appreciate his humor, but his most well-known stories ("The Nose" and "The Overcoat") pretty much blow my mind (in the wtf-did-I-just-read way, not the omg-that-just-changed-my-life way). I'd say go for his "Ukrainian" stories (is that how you spell that?). They are more like folk stories or fairy tales, and make more sense to me. There is so much Russian bureaucracy in his Petersburg stories, I just get lost. But if you are interested in the "absurd" (a la Camus), I suppose they could be considered precursors to that.

Poe: I enjoy Poe for the most part, but his detective stories really bore me. "Murder in the Rue Morgue" reminded me so much of Sherlock Holmes (I'm not sure who came first). Seriously, a rogue orantugan? Really? His stories are amazing because of the dark and depressing detail, but for me, they don't hit the mark. Except "The Fall of the House of Usher". I really enjoy that story. Gothic perfection. Still need to read "The Pit and the Pendulum".

Chekhov: I commented on this in my last update. Shockingly enough, I got stuck on a story entitled "A Boring Story". So you can extrapolate from there.

Hemingway: We are focusing on the "In Our Times" series of his stories. I LOVE "Indian Camp". That's an excellent story. And, as I mentioned before, "The End of Something" is also excellent. Hemingway can be pretty dense, but when he focuses on people and not on the outdoors or horse racing or something else I don't know anything about, I enjoy his work.

Joyce: Four stories into Dubliners. Once I read an analysis online and then reread the story, I start to get it a little more. Part of it is my Joyce block, which I've had since I tried (and failed) to read and understand A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man back in AP English in high school. Part of it is Joyce and his desire to describe everything in detail and yet somehow obsure all meaning. This is me reading Joyce: "Whaaaaa?"