Readathon 2016 – Hours 1-3

It’s my second ever readathon, and what a busy day to start on. I’m actually a bit late to the party because I was doing a ‘shift’ on a local market, promoting Jericho Artweeks (more on that later).Today is also St George’s day (missing out on free beer!), Shakespeare’s Birthday (missing special bookish events at the Bodleian) and World Book Day… but I’m happy to be spending the day reading. This year I’ve sort of planned, by gathering some small-ish books I’ve been meaning to read, as well as some chunkier ones and even e-books and audio books as I know what my moods are like.

So yeah in the UK the readathon starts at 1pm, I didn’t get home until about half 2, then spent a good 15 minutes looking for my kindle, making lunch, putting the kettle on, reading the hourly updates I’d missed… so yes it’s into the 3rd hour and I’ve hardly done any reading. But I’m going to spend a few minutes taking part in a couple of mini challenges I’ve missed…

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? the decidedly sunny / not sunny North Oxford (Oxford UK, not the other ones) 
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? I think ‘The Art of Travel’ sounds like a right hoot
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? I have some Thai crackers that will knock my socks off later
4) Tell us a little something about yourself! erm… I’m in the middle of preparing for an art exhibition that is pretty much consuming all my thoughts at the moment, today is a nice breather before panic sets back in on Sunday when I have to try and rebuild my website..
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 mentioned above, I’ve planned multiple options, rather than just trying to read an entire book like last time (although it was an interesting one, I still haven’t finished it from 6 months ago!), variety to keep me entertained. Also I have a stack of records for background listening, it means I have to stop to change the record a fair bit, but how else will I reach my goal of 10k steps a day if I’m spending most of it in an armchair?


  1. My overarching memory, was that in infant school (age 4-7) we had to stand at the teacher’s desk and read aloud to her for books to ‘count’ (there was a bit of unspoken competition between me and a couple of other kids, as you progressed through the school books in order, green was the highest level and we all wanted to be the ‘best’ reader). Well the teacher got called away for something and told me to wait there a moment, so I kept reading. In fact when she returned after break (she’d forgotten about me and then assumed I would go out when the bell went) I was still stood there reading aloud at her desk. I can’t remember the books though.
  2. The library – my mum took us to the village library almost every week, we could get 6 books out at a time, and I did. At some times it felt Iike I’d read every children/teen book they had, when I was a bit older, I was allowed to join the library in the next town over that was huge in comparison. So that was another 6 books per fortnight I could read, and again I did. My abiding memory is that there was a lot of Sweet Valley and Asterix books.
  3. The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe – I think this resurfaced as there was a BBC dramatisation in the 1980s of the book, so I read this first. I bought it from the wise owl book club at school – you could buy stamps each week (which were cool owl stickers) valued at anything from 1p to 50p and then every so often we were allowed in the ‘library’ where books were brought it for us to buy. I would’ve been 8-9 ish? A few years later on my first trip to London, my parents bought me the box set of the entire Chronicles of Narnia. I remember it was £50 and seemed ridiculously expensive, but hey books = education so no need for guilt? I still have the set and it was probably the books I re-read the most.
  4. Enid Blyton – I was a huge fan and still have plenty of them at my mum’s house. Favourite series’s were the Faraway Tree stories and the Secret Seven, oh and the Mallory Towers / St Clare’s series. We used to try and make our fishing nets into lacrosse nets so we could play like in the books. At one point I had over 80 books by Enid Blyton, not sure how many I still have.
  5.  Playing librarian – I begged my parents to buy me a date stamping set so we could play librarians, because I loved the noise the stamp made at the library. Of course mine wasn’t that fancy and didn’t make a noise, so we made it with out mouths…

I think that’s enough mini challenges for now…


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