The Pros & Cons of Reading Challenges/Readathons (ft. upcoming diverse challenges you can join)

In case you were wondering, I am terrible at readathons. Or reading challenges. Or any sort of reading where I need to read by a specific date.

Also, tbrs. I can think of one (1) incident where having a set monthly tbr actually worked really well.

Anyways, this is all just to say: I often fail at reading challenges and readathons (some people can THRIVE at them and I live in eternal awe of them) but I will still, still always join them because I love setting up high expectations and then not accomplishing them and then feeling bad about myself later.

10/10 habits. Y’all should try it sometime! 😎

(edit: I’m so sorry I had to re-upload this with the featured image like… two weeks after I posted it because I DIDN’T REALIZE. What ??? on earth ??? did I do.)

I’ll literally make a schedule for myself and then completely ignore it later. Seriously, I’ll go through the effort of making a realistic schedule (reading a book over three-four days) and then I’ll forget about it??? Or if not, I just don’t read because I’m lazy and tired and start doing other less productive things.

related: being a scheduled reader vs. a mood reader

Also, I’m going to use the term “set events” to describe many things, including but not limited to:

  • readathons
  • reading challenges
  • book club assigned reading

pros 2

they can be used to enhance your reading

Certain readathons and challenges will have specific goals, which are usually to increase the attention on marginalized books or other uncommonly read books!

There are lots of amazing diverse events (which I will be shouting out later!) that seriously help to expand tbrs and allow readers to diversify their literature, which I think is so cool.

They can also increase the amounts of specific genres, like classics or memoirs!

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they help to cultivate group conversation!

Goodreads groups usually have a discussion open where you can talk about the book that you’re reading with other people and if you’re all reading the same book, then you can easily chat about what’s happening within it.

Also, there are lots of other events, like the 24HourReadathon, which will have Twitter chats. There, you can share your status with other people, your upcoming tbr, what books you’ve already read, and how you’re doing so far!

Image result for talking nonsense gif
me whenever I pop in on a Twitter chat (which is like never)

There are also usually linkups, where you can link your reviews of books or posts about the events, which provide a good medium for all participants to talk to each other.

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they inspire lots of post/video content

I don’t know about you guys, but I absolutely love to read tbr posts about reading challenges?? Especially ones that I’m participating in, too?

Like, I literally devoured (and still will devour) all of the posts about YARC, because it’s so fun seeing everyone’s Asian tbrs and seeing what they want to read and whether or not we have anything in common!

Also, vlogs of different events are so freaking enjoyable to watch, and some of my favorites to watch were Lala’s 116 page challenge and every single one of Melanie’s Contemporary-a-Thon vlogs!!

cons 2

we can create some overachieving tbrs

Example number one: my tbr for the month of May: aka AAPI month. I thought that I might actually do well on this because for the first couple of days, I was on track with how many books I wanted to read!

Hello I was aiming to read fifteen (15) books and I have currently read six (6) and over 2/3 of the month is over.

I love… setting myself up for failure, I guess??? I mean, I already predicted that I would fail miserably at my tbr but it still sucks when I fail. I had that tiny speck of hope that I might succeed and do amazing!!! and read all of the books!! but it didn’t work.

Is this post: talking about readathons and reading challenges or is it me just ranting about my may tbr?

Anyways, it is evidently not just me that does this, but also many others that create tbrs that are really hard to accomplish, lmao.

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it can be hard to read certain books on time

Like I said earlier, I know some people who are AMAZING at this. Like, they will actually THRIVE on their schedule and hardly ever fail to read their alloted amount of pages?

Honestly, I don’t think there was one time where I read the correct percentages of books? Even for buddy reads, I’ll usually start like… three days later. Or a week later. Or sometimes I stay in the middle of the book for like, a month when the other person has already finished???

Come over to the wild side, guys!!!! Join me!!!!

There has been the spare occasion where I actually read the book on time, and I’ve actually finished the book ahead of time because I have a habit of reading books in one sitting (although I can’t do that as often anymore and I have #feelings about it).

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→ DIVERSE EVENTS YOU SHOULD JOIN

🍋 Dragons and Tea Bookclub| This Goodreads club focuses on reading diverse and marginalized books every month! (I haven’t managed to read a single group book on time… clearly I’m rocking this!!)

🍋 The Sapphic Squad| Okay, I don’t know when group reads will continue again but we all need to be prepared to freaking join when they resume, y’all!! Let’s please show more support for sapphic events?? It’s so sad when not as much support is given, and we need to GIVE IT.

🍋 Read Your Gays Readathon| This one’s happening in the beginning of June and I don’t know the full details but I’m pretty sure that it just focuses on LGBT+ stories!! Get hyped!!

🍋 SapphicAThon| The last round was in February and like I said…… let’s show MORE SUPPORT FOR THESE SAPPHIC EVENTS (yes I’m screaming at my 2 subscribers)!! Let’s encourage the sapphic reading and participate! Please.

🍋 Queer Lit Readathon| This readathon is also happening in the beginning of June and there are a bunch of challenges to follow when you do it!!

🍋 Year of the Asian Reading Challenge| This challenge takes place during the entire year so it’s never too late to join!! I’m currently participating in this one and here’s my tbrlook at the cute badges you can get.

🍋 AsianLitBingo| This happens each May and while it’s already almost over, it’s annual so it’s definitely happening next year! The bingo graphics are always so pretty and I’m pretty sure there are contests with prizes!

🍋 ReadIPOChallenge| Okay, this is a challenge that me and May started planning back in November and we never went through with it?? And yes this is totally a reminder to them that we need to get on it soon. 😈 We’ve already figured out prompts and things, but there’s still a lot more that needs to be planned. Anyways, you should holler in the comments if you’d be interested in participating!!

tell me your thoughts 2

What are some other pros and cons of reading challenges/etc? What are some of your favorite reading challenges or readathons? Are you good at scheduling your reading times? Would you participate in the ReadIPOChallenge (very important)?

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18 thoughts on “The Pros & Cons of Reading Challenges/Readathons (ft. upcoming diverse challenges you can join)

  1. okay, i loved this post, so yes? i personally like reading challenges/readathons (especially the former) because they allow me to read more from what i like as well as encourage me to read more widely which is always great! i’m super competitive with myself so that helps! it also allows me to prioritize books i really want to read, which i love! but i’m also super competitive with myself and way too overachieving (like, my TBRs are … a lot. even though i only have that many bc i mood read from the pile, i fail at reaching the number that i want a lot, which is tragic but oh well. also i LOVE vlogs so much? lala from books and lala and chelsea from chelseadollingreads have some of my fav vlogs!

    and also WOW there are so many great diverse reading challenges, this is such a great resource! i love YARC, the dragons and tea book club, and i can’t wait to participate in all the fun things planned for pride next month! and also, i would totally be interested in the ReadIPOC Challenge, especially since i’m very very bad at reading from ipoc (which i need to change) so i would love to see more updates for that! seriously, cant wait!

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  2. Ahh I also love YARC tbrs! I love seeing what other people are going to read because I always ALWAYS find new books, and it’s the best feeling ever. I’ve found some of my favorite books this way, so TBRs are my favorite kind of posts to read.

    And please don’t beat yourself up for not meeting your TBR! I do this all. The. Time. I purposely list a lot of books to read for a month that way I have wiggle room to decide what to read and don’t feel restricted by it. (I’m a mood reader, so I need to do this often!)

    ALSO, have you seen this https://bookriot.com/2019/04/05/teen-book-bloggers/? Because congratulations!

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  3. ooh i love this post! i don’t participate in readathons for a BIG reason that i think the book community fails to ever discuss which is that the fundamental structure of most readathon events makes it difficult for neurodivergent and/or otherwise differently abled readers to participate. from page counts, to “required readings” to reading challenges to even buddy reading and more (the list goes on) it can be really difficult for neurodivergent and/or differently abled readers like me. for instance, i have to listen to audiobooks and thus can’t completely contribute to page counts. sometimes required reads and challenges are too difficult for me. i’m a slow reader/listener so buddy reading challenges become different, especially given i also have adhd. speaking of adhd, reading sprints become extra difficult due my difficulty focusing for long periods of time. i guess you could say “just go at your own pace and modify as you need,” but given the somewhat communal nature of readathons, its hard to do that and still feel included.

    i hate to pose a problem without a solution but ‘m not really sure if anything can be done to work around this flaw and/or correct it so that more neurodivergent and/or differently people can participate.

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  4. I love joining in readathons but I’m horrible at following set TBRs. My gavorite readathons are the ones with higher interaction being able to reas with other people is an amazing thing since its normally such a solitary event.
    Vlogs are my favorite videos in booktube. Especially Lala’s but I also really like Chelsea’s from chelseadolling and April at Aprilimus Maximus.
    I really think they can motivate me to read things sooner rather than later
    Some of these readathons an book clubs are new to me and I’m excited to join in when I can! Your readathon sounds like it would be a lot of fun I would love to join in when it goes live!

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  5. I’m a mood reader so I’m terrible at following a TBR. I’m pretty sure a TBR is a sure way for me to get into a reading slump, so I mostly avoid them. But long term reading challenges can be good because they allow you to set a goal but have time to complete it whenever you can! I have yet to participate in a readathon, so I don’t know how I would do in one. I’d love to participate in one though! 🙂

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  6. I love challenges. 90% of the reason I got so into literature was because, when I was in 10th grade, I decided to read a classic novel every month. They’re my jam. But I ALWAYS seem to find them right before they end 😦 gotta stay on top of this if I want to actually do any.

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  7. dude im sorry IM SO SLOW ON EMPRESS im only on like page 60!!! i hope to read more soon? but yeah lol IM SO BAD AT CHALLENGES AND READATHONS because like im SUCH a mood reader? i love setting myself up for failure tho!! AND YES TO YOU AND MAY’S READATHON!!!

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  8. Ohhhh. This is a great post and I 200% agree with your list. I’m always thinking about all of these pros whenever I see a new and fun challenge or readathon coming up and everyone participating. They sound like so much fun! They’d help me tackle my TBR! They could inspire me to write posts and TBRs for the first time yay!! But…. I never manage to really participate because… if I have so many books I want to read, I just ca’n’t get to buying them for the readathon (because no library and intl book blogger and money and ugh frustrating) and I’m sometimes such a mood reader that I’ll end up setting myself up for failure haha. I do LOVE how readathons bring so many people of the community together though its so good to see!! 😀

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  9. I love this post!! I personally adore reading challenges and readathons. I last participated in the Magical Readathon and had SO MUCH FUN! It helped me getting out of my reading slump and since I convinced all of my friends to participate I could talk with all of them about it. I also used to do a 24 hours readathon per month, though I stopped now because I don’t want to burn my brain haha. But I do see how stressful those events can be! Also! Thank you for the list of diverse readathons, I needed this!!

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  10. I’m pretty good with buddy reads and book clubs, but my main problem with reading challenges/readathons is just that I get almost all my books from the library, and since my library isn’t huge, that’s basically entirely through holds and interlibrary loans, which means I have NO CONTROL over what comes in when. Which makes them difficult.

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  11. I like the idea of reading challenges and readathons, and I can definitely see their pros. A lot of them have really interesting themes, too!

    I’m terrible at doing them, though. I’m a mood reader, so a readathon doesn’t work for me because it’d want to read books that wouldn’t fit the theme. XD I also don’t like to pressure myself in reading a certain amount of books a month — I know I’ll just get into a reading slump.

    The only exception is the GoodReads reading challenge, but other than that I don’t do them. I do like seeing other people being excited over them. 😀

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  12. I really love reading challenges, even when I don’t keep up with them. They still keep me at least SOMEWHAT motivated to read things I’ve been meaning to read anyway. I also host the Book Blog Discussion Challenge, which I love because it encourages all of us to post more discussions on our blogs (and I love reading them). 🙂

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  13. Oh such a fantastic post!! I’m a huge fan of all reading challenges and Readathons, because they really help to get me motivated and boost my reading 😊 However, I agree that it can sometimes get stressful to have a large TBR for a Readathon! I usually prefer longer Readathons/challenges, because that gives me more time, as week-long Readathons are usually what I find very intense 😄 I’ll also be keeping out an eye for your project!! 👀

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