Sunday, June 8, 2008

48 Hour Book Challenge: Wrap Up

Whew. The 2008 48-Hour Book Challenge has come to an end for me. Of the past 48 hours, I have read and blogged for 26.25 hours. Some parts were harder than I thought they would be, some parts were easier than I thought they would be.

But first, the stats:

My total reading and blogging time was 26 hours and 15 minutes.

I finished the following books:

Model Spy by Shannon Greenland (206 pages)
Zlata's Diary by Zlata Filipovic (200 pages)
Rumors by Anna Godbersen (423 pages)
Heart and Salsa by Suzanne Nelson (214 pages)
The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan (279 pages)
Schooled by Gordon Korman (208 pages)
The Fold by An Na (280 pages)
Now and Zen by Linda Gerber (214 pages)

I also read parts of a couple of books:

Prey by Michael Crichton - I had read about half the book before the challenge started and during the challenge I read 278 pages (I'm counting it as .5 books).

I read a little bit of Pure Dead Magic by Deb Gliori, but decided that it wasn't really my cup of tea. And I read a little of Knights of the Hill Country by Tim Tharp, but I wasn't going to be able to finish it in the time allotted, so I switched books. Since I didn't review either of these, I won't count them in my final book/page count.

Total books read: 8.5

Final page count: 2302 pages

What I learned:

I had a strategy originally. I had checked out a bunch of short books (200 pages or less) theorizing that it would be easier to read a bunch of short books than to get mired up in longer books. For me, that strategy didn't work so well. It was way easier for me to read books I had really been looking forward to and was really interested in, even if they were longer books. When I was getting through the shorter books, I kept checking to see what page I was on and they were dragging on and on... When I picked up the books I was really interested in (like Prey, The Sea of Monsters, and The Fold), they flew by because the stories were so interesting that I would forget to check the page numbers.

So, if I do this challenge again (and I would like to!), I'll remember to pick books I really want to read.

Also, I had originally set a goal of 10 books and/or 2500 pages. I didn't meet either of those goals (though I was close!), but once I threw that goal out the window, my new goal was to read for at least 20 hours. I think that was a much better goal because it took the pressure off. As long as I read for that amount of time, it didn't matter how many pages I read. (And c'mon... with last year's winner reading 20 books, there was no freakin' way I was going to win!)

Which brings me to the next thing... Checking other people's blogs during the challenge can be a fun way to get some inspiration, but it can also backfire. Like when you see that someone read Rumors in 2.5 hours and it's taking you way longer and then you start thinking that you need to be reading faster and you're never going to keep up with everyone else and... etc. etc. So... while I think it's great to check up on everyone's progress and especially to leave encouraging comments (which I will do more of next time, promise!), don't let yourself get discouraged because that's not the point!

So. Yes. My 48 hours has now officially come to a close. I had a blast (especially once I decided to make it FUN and not STRESSFUL) and I hope to get to do it again next year. (I think I will need a year to recover, probably...)

Hats off to Mother Reader who thought the whole thing up and organized everything and is generally awesome!

And now I am off to not-read for awhile. Congrats to everyone who's made it through and a big YOU CAN DO IT! to anyone who's still going!


Jen Robinson said...

I found it a little stressful, too. Kudos to you for dropping the stressful part. But it's funny, I found for me the short book strategy worked better - the couple of longer books that I read felt like they were dragging, even though they were good books - I guess I just set myself a rapid pace, and I needed the book completions to feel satisfied. Anyway, it's a learning experience, for sure.

Melissa said...

I purposely didn't read any (or hardly any) blogs during the 48 hours, because I knew I'd feel inferior. I managed 20 hours, which was my goal. And for me, that worked better than any arbitrary book or page number goals.

Good for you for reading as much as you did! :)

Anonymous said...

Aww! I was all stressed out when I check Midwester Lodestar and saw that there was NO WAY IN THE WORLD I was going to read that much. I also stopped checking other people's blogs. :)

Little Willow said...

Hey! We both read The Fold!

Darcie said...

Hello back to you Abby - This is ReadingDerby - here's is an ironic twist for you!! I am a displaced Illinoisian! I grew up in Champaign-Urbana and then lived in Addison the Suburb after college!! I just had to tell you we are living in each other's displaced states!!! :)

Darcie said...

I agree with you about reading other people's blogs. Here people were reading 100 - 200 pages an hour and I was at 50! I think next time I will set different goals for myself and compete with those (i.e. this year I was able to read 6 hours - next time I will try to double that!). I read a long book and enjoyed it but was frustrated that it was going slow. I think you are right - read books you are really wanting to read! By the way - in case you aren't read-out The Hidden Side of the Leaf is having a 24-hour Read-a-thon. The link is

If you don't want to read cheerleaders are always needed! :)

Lenore Appelhans said...

It actually took the pressure off me to see that people were attaining numbers that I would never achieve. It let me enjoy my last few books a bit more.

Anonymous said...

Nice work on all that reading! Also, I tagged you for the Favorite Authors Meme if you're interested. :)

KKelley said...

Wow is all i have to say.

Kristi said...

Yeah, I'm nowhere near the big leagues in number of books or pages read, but that's okay, I still enjoyed myself!