The readathon reading log begins
You would think you’d start the day off reading when you’re committed to a 24-hour marathon readathon like Dewey’s 24-hour Read-a-thon, but no. The dogs must piddle. The coffee must brew. The dogs must eat. The cheerleader must shake those pom-poms. The dogs must go out. The first cup of coffee must be inhaled. THEN the reading begins.
Scroll down to read more about the books read, the mid-survey, and the final Read-a-Thon wrap-up. – vikk
According to the Dewey website we are apparently in Hour TWO. While many are providing an hour by hour log I will be updating this post so do come back to see how I’m doing. The read-a-thon began, for me, at 7:00 am this morning.
Do you know we have 478 people from all over the world participating? Nearly 200 of them have posted their introductory post for their readathon reading log. Sign up here.
My official readathon reading log
As I mentioned several times this week and in my official readathon book list post, I am starting my reading with a short work.
Mr. Poe, I so well remember how much I love you. (9:30 am)
As much as I love Edgar Allan Poe, I had forgotten just how good he really is. This morning I reread one of my favorite works, The Tell-Tale Heart, and within seconds was deep into the mind of the character and totally caught up with the story. Any writer could learn more than a thing or two from reading Poe. So The Tell-Tale Heart can now be labeled “finished” on my official readathon book list. You can find The Tell-Tale Heart in most Poe collections such as Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe.
“Imagine a man without a country” (12:00 pm)
In 1863 Edward Everett Hale, a prolific writer of his times, used the most traditional way of conjuring up a story and thought “what if.” At a time when the United States was more a collection of states than a nation, Hale brought forth a story that would go on to grip the nation by simply saying: Imagine a man without a country. The rest is history.
As it turns out, Hale is one of those rare writers who is best known for this one story and nothing else. The work is The Man Without a Country. His story is of a man who, during his court martial, dared to “Damn the United State. I wish I may never hear of the United States again!” And that, my friends, is what this tale is about.
I enjoyed the story today as much as I did during my first reading when I was a young teenager. The book is an illustrated Heritage Press 1936 volume. Some might call this a novella; some a short story.
Time out for the Mid-Event Survey
Right now I’m doing okay. I did notice a little eye fatigue as I was finishing up Moby Dick listed below. It’s hard to pick a favorite read since I’ve enjoyed them all so much. No snacks yet. I’m about to go to the fridge and see what I can find. As for new bloggers, there are so many. I’ll have to think about. — vikk
There she blows! A hump like a snow-hill! It is Moby Dick! (7:00pm)
It is done. I can now say I have read Herman Melville’s Moby Dick. Truth be told, I don’t know why I didn’t tackle it before because I absolutely loved Melville’s work. Who knew he was such a funny guy? Were it not for the Moby Dick Big Read earlier this year, I’m not sure I would have picked the book up. I made it through the first 500 pages in tandem with the daily chapter audios by listening and reading but life intervened. I’m so glad I read this book.
I am also happy to be back on track with the readathon because I’ve been dealing with some bathroom plumbing, flooding issues. Took a quick lunch and returned to find both bathrooms a disaster. Once I realized there wasn’t much I could do other than throw down about 20 towels and clean up, I dove into the sea after the big whale. — vikk
“In my family, a book can be a life raft” – Alice Hoffman (7:00 am)
I suppose it’s only fitting that I would end a 24-hour readathon by reading a book with the title Survival Lessons. That’s pretty much what it takes to get through 24-hours of reading. I wish I could say I went the distance in the readathon but I fell asleep sometime around midnight and woke up at 5:00 am. That was enough time to cheer on some over-nighters, grab some coffee, and open up the iPad Kindle app to Hoffman’s latest book. Surprisingly, it’s a memoir.
I enjoy reading Alice Hoffman. She’s the kind of writer who makes me weep. Her writing is just that beautiful. She did it to me again, this time in a nonfiction book. She is an amazing, gifted writer. Survival Lessons is a rather short book but it doesn’t stay in the shallows. It is deep. It is honest, and it is beautiful.
Earlier I tweeted the following Jim Crace quote from the Paris Review: “Try pitching a story of happiness to your editors and their toes are going to curl up.” Well, perhaps Hoffman curled her editors toes but I bet they didn’t stay that way long. Yes, this is a memoir that speaks of her battle with breast cancer but it is, primarily, a book about beauty and finding happiness in life. I heartily urge you to give it a read.
One last story – Wilde in Omaha
Dewey’s 24-hour Read-a-thon may be over but the reading continues. As the wee hours approached I picked up Ron Hansen’s She Loves Me Not: New and Selected Stories read the first story. Wilde in Omaha features a meeting between an American reporter and Oscar Wilde during Wilde’s stop in Omaha. This is a writer whose characters and settings breathe and live. I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the book.
The traditional Dewey final wrap
When it comes to my most daunting hour, it’s a toss-up between the hour(s) I dealt with the flooded bathroom two-bathroom plumbing problems or the hour I fell asleep — both unplanned. As for high interest, it’s hard to tell. Moby Dick really grabbed me. The chapters are short and most have a lot of action. I’d advise reading it at a slow one-two chapter a day pace. I loved participating in the readathon and particularly enjoyed the Twitter engagement and reading the updated posts. Also enjoyed my first stint as a Dewey “cheerleader.” I’m happy with my results:
Read: 2 short stories, 2 novellas, and finished the last 100 pages of Moby Dick. (The Tell-Tale Heart, Wilde in Omaha, The Man without a Country, and Suvival Lessons) Loved them all.
There you have it: The completed readathon reading log. Does that mean my reading has come to an end? Heavens no! It’s 7:30 am Sunday morning and I have a full day of reading planned. I love to hear from my readers and visitors, so do share your thoughts below. What are you reading?