Button 24 Hour Read-a-ThonI can’t remember exactly when I participated in Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon for the first time: when she was still among us or shortly after her passing. I know I firstly blogged along in October 2009 but I may have participated on Twitter previously. I didn’t join in all editions since, but surely enjoyed a lot of them!

This ten year -tin- anniversary feels different to me in that I mainly read short stories — which is not my usual genre. It seemed many of us were into spooky books this time. But maybe that’s usual this time of year and I’m only extra sensitive to it because it’s true, and new, for me.

And then I learned a few things.

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1. Which hour was most daunting for you?

Hour 17. I went for a short sleep at the halfway point (2AM GMT+1) and meant to get up at 6AM… but was too tired and killed my alarm clock so that I overslept till 9. That bums me out.

2. Tell us ALLLLL the books you read!

Wellll…. I mainly read a lot of stories?

  • The Fair Beckoning One ~ Oliver Onions
  • The Mezzotint ~ M.R. James
  • Honeysuckle Cottage ~ P.G. Wodehouse
  • Click-Clack the Rattlebag ~ Neil Gaiman
  • They ~ Rudyard Kipling
  • Memento Mori (audio) ~ Stephanie Victoire (@weepingwillow84)

The first five are all selected, introduced AND illustrated by Audrey Niffenegger in Ghostly. The last one was written by a-friend-of-a-friend on Instagram and commissioned in honour of the BBC National Short Story Award 2017.

I finished my nonfiction book about donkeys (gathering dust on the nightstand). Yay!

3. Which books would you recommend to other Read-a-thoners?

From the (ahem) “many” I read this weekend I can highly recommend Audrey Niffenegger’s Ghostly for next year’s Spooktober edition of the readathon. Other suitable faves are Mr Sandman by Barbara Gowdy, Never Let Me Go (Kazuo Ishiguro), all Mutts comics by Patrick McDonnell, Strangers by Taichi Yamada, David Mitchell’s The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, Maps for Lost Lovers (Nadeem Aslam), Norwegian Wood or The Wind-up Bird Chronicles from Haruki Murakami, Be With You (Takuji Ichikawa) — and I could go on.

4. What’s a really rad thing we could do during the next Read-a-thon that would make you smile?

Let me think on that!

5. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? Would you be interested in volunteering to help organize and prep?

VERY likely to participate, maybe volunteer as well. I have been part of the cheerleader team a few times before but needed to concentrate on crawling out of my reading slump this time. My contribution will likely depend on that in April as well.

I had a few goals at the beginning of this autumn edition of the ‘thon.

  1. I had hoped to finish Ghostly. As you have it I’m only at 60% (having started at ca. 30%). Most of the stories have been written at the beginning of the previous century which makes it a wee slower read for me than usual because of unknown vocabulary and dated language. (It must be said I’m not a fast reader anyway.)
  2. Finishing my nonfiction about donkeys. Which I did!
  3. Reading for long-ish stretches at a time. Sort of accomplished to do so as well.
  4. Not get distracted too much… Check!

Things I learned:

  • I want to read some work of Dennis Lehane
  • I may like P.G. Wodehouse as I enjoyed his story Honeysuckle Cottage
  • I need to keep my calendar fully clear for April’s readathon weekend
  • While reading less pages and for less hours than hoped used to make me feel like a #fail it now only disappoints me a little. I know it to be normal ;) I guess I’m growing up LOL

All in all I’m quite content with how the 24 hour readathon went. But I feel sad that it has gone by so fast again!