This year I’ve been participating in a lot of Read-a-thons, I thought I would dedicate today’s post to Read-a-thons and give you some tips on how to have a successful Read-a-thon. I think they’re such a fun way to try and knock out your TBR. They motivate me a lot too. I love the interaction aspect on Twitter and the sprints. I thought I’d share some of the tips and tricks I’ve picked up along the way!
Tip #1: Don’t Stress.
There is no such thing as failing in Read-a-thons. No one is grading you on how many hours you read or Books you read. Read at your own pace and don’t worry about others’ progress, because we’re all winners here.
Tip #2: Fill your read-a-thon TBR with short books.
Depending on your attention span try to stay away from big chunky books during read-a-thons. I have a terrible attention span, so I try to avoid bigger book. One of the biggest mistakes I made during previous read-a-thons is choosing long books. I mean, you can if you want. Some people can read those in a day. But if you’re anything like me, it takes you a while, you’re eyes get tired, and after 7 hours of the same book, you get bored.
Tip #3: Don’t be afraid to DNF (Did Not Finish)
Sometimes a book just isn’t working for you in that moment, and if you feel pressure to keep going with it, the wrong book will derail your entire read-a-thon. This is something I used to find really difficult to do because I usually like to finish a book even if I’m not enjoying it all that much, but lately I’ve been DNF-ing a lot more books that I’m not enjoying. Read-a-thons are not the time to be dragging through a book you’re not enjoying.
Tip #4: Vary the types of books you read and vary the genres you read.
Try a variety of genres or topics or plots during read-a-thons; it’s the very best way to keep your interest high. Make sure the books in your read-a-thon stack are a variety of genres, formats, and sizes so you don’t burn yourself out. I like to choose a lot of different genres and formats, so I have the option to switch to a different. In my stack I usually have Fantasy, Contemporary, a few Graphic Novels and Manga. Some of my books will be review copies while others will be library books and some I’ve owned for a while now. Always have at least one ‘light’ read in your pile.
Tip #5: Changing your reading spots is also a good idea
Moving to a different place after a few hours will help you focus more. Do you have a special comfy reading chair or particular space? Maybe you prefer a rocking chair outside on the veranda. Create the reading environment that will encourage you to read and allow you to sink into the story.
Tip #6: Set goals
Setting personal goals is great for personal motivation. You could set a Pages goal or book goal, or to cross books off a reading Challenge or to meet a monetary goal if you’re reading for charity. I usually set a page goal of how many pages I’d like to read each day.
Tip #7: Take breaks
Don’t feel like you have to read the entire time. If you need to rest your eyes, take a break! Go outside, take a nap, eat something – which sounds weird, how do you forget to eat, but if I’m really enjoying a book sometimes I forget to eat or that I have eaten yet, so don’t do that – Take a walk around the block. Do some yoga. Stretch your legs. I like to spend 10 minutes or so every hour logging my process, whether on Goodreads, a blog, or twitter and seeing where other people are at.
Tip #8: Stay flexible
Don’t be afraid to change strategy. Just keep in mind that this is supposed to be fun, so don’t do anything that makes it less enjoyable.
Okay, so that’s it for this post. I was planning on doing 10 Tips, but I couldn’t think of anymore. Do you have any tips you would like to share? Any tips you’d add? Do you have a good technique to aid reading for long periods of time? Have I maybe persuaded you to give one a go? Let me know in the Comments. I’d love it if you’d share your thoughts, ideas, and read-a-thon tips in the comment section below!