Thursday, November 29, 2007

Day to Read



DAY TO READ campaign - January 10, 2008


January 10, 2008

Please mark your calendar.

Because, well, I'm asking you a favor.

But first a story. About a story. Or really a book.

Do you remember reading late at night, in your childhood bed, way past your bedtime a book you just couldn't put down?

One of those books for me was The Princess Bride. Yes, young readers, it was a book before a movie and a brilliant book at that. The premise was that the father didn't want to read the book to his son so when his kid wasn't interested in reading this book he came to find out that his own father had skipped the so-called "boring" parts about such things as horse trading, geo-politics, and naming trends in a far away land.

What we then get is the "good parts" version of The Princess Bride. He alludes to the boring sections but it only enhances the over all storytelling and obviously those never made it into the movie (doesn't that make you wish you read the book?).

So, deep under the covers, way past my bedtime, Buttercup is being pulled by the Dread Pirate Roberts along a steep ravine near the Fire Swamp. She eventually pushes him into the deep valley to avenge the death of her love and as he tumbles down he yells "As you wish....."

And I nearly screamed from under the covers. I remember distinctly my childhood bedroom, the sheets and the complete shock when I realized, along with Buttercup, it was him. Him!

Imagine not having that experience? Of not having a book take you completely out of who you are? Where you live? Of seeing the characters only in your head.

And, according to research, did you know that reading books is linked to civic engagement?

I recently read about a National Endowment for the Arts report that young folks aren't reading like they used to. Get this:
  • only 30% of 13-year-olds read almost every day

  • the number of 17-year-olds who never read for pleasure increased from 9 percent in 1984 to 19 percent in 2004 - that is 1 in 5 kids don't read for fun

  • Almost half of Americans between ages 18 and 24 never read books for pleasure

  • The average person between ages 15 and 24 spends 2 to 2 1/2 hours a day watching TV and 7 minutes reading
According to Diane Gioia, the Chair of the NEA,

"The poorest Americans who read did twice as much volunteering and charity work as the richest who did not read. The habit of regular reading awakens something inside a person that makes him or her take their own life more seriously and at the same time develops the sense that other people's lives are real."

Does that quote give you chills? It does me. So that's why I'm asking folks, myself included, to take time one day in January to stop blogging - for the entire day or part of the day - and use the blogging time to read. A book. A magazine. A newspaper.

Take the button (email me at amitchells AT yahoo DOT com for the code) and please paste it in a post as well as your sidebar.

Write about this. About what books, magazines, newspapers mean to you. Write a couple of posts about writings that have taken you to another place. And mark Thursday, January 10, 2008 as Day to Read. Then on Friday, January 11th, write a bit about what you read.

And thank you.

35 comments:

Flower Child said...

Love your recommendations for kids' books - helps me with the nieces!

chelle said...

We are huge readers at our house. My daughter has to look at books and gets read to at least twice a day if not more. I love a day to read, I used reading to escape as a kid. My husband was not an avid reader until we met. I was shocked then determined to find books he liked. I still search all the time.

I *must* find that Princess Bride book!

Jenn in Holland said...

Oh, Chelle, you really MUST find Princess Bride. I had a similar experience as SMID reading that book. It just cannot be missed!

SMID to you, an excellent send off on an excellent campaign. I am so excited to be part of this project.
Lets get our books out and READ!

Luisa Perkins said...

This is such a great idea; I hope it spreads like wildfire.

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Wonderful idea! I hope you can take the web by storm with this!

CableGirl said...

My post is up for Reading Day, but I seem to be having trouble with the button. It's up but it won't link back to you. Suggestions?

Goofball said...

I can't make my post today anymore, but it'll come!

Jami said...

I'm in! My post is up.p

Jodi said...

I'm in, I'm in. My post it up!

jennifer said...

I used to read Nancy Drew under the covers with a flashlight. Then I read Where the Red Fern Grows... about 10 times.
This is a great initiative

Jan said...

I love to read so I guess I have to play...... LOL anything that has to do with reading is my game. How do I get that button?

Jan

Heather said...

I have loved reading since I was a kid and getting in trouble for reading under the covers with a flashlight...no wait, before that, being read to by my grandfather.

My kids will pick reading books over TV anytime.

I loved the Betsy-Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace as a kid.

Gunfighter said...

I'm in, too!

Take THAT NaBloMeMoFo

Savy said...

And I get in trouble for reading. I read too much, but I don't feel normal if I'm not in the middle of a book. My librarian hates me.

Both my kids can usually be found in a book too. Hubby, on the other hand, keeps "meaning to"...

Aimee Greeblemonkey said...

I love that you are pushing reading. Thatta girl!!! :))))

Tree said...

Yes yes yes! I will do this! Thank you.

soccer mom in denial said...

I know I've been saying this alot but you all just rock.

Savy and Tree, welcome! Let me know if you want the code to the button.

Mariposa Speaks said...

Learn this from wholly burble...and I would love to join... ;)

Suzanne said...

I am SO in! I have a post with some "read in one evening" suggestions going up at SuzanneSays... here in a few mins - just fiddling with the photo some, first.

Regina said...

Hi There,
I popped over from Gill's blog to say HELLO! And also to say that I am so IN with the day to read. I love reading so this is right up my alley! if you get a chance stop by my blog, I would love to have you!

Blessings!

Melanie said...

I came over from Regina's blog to let you know I am in!

I do remember staying up late reading as a child. I still love to read but I haven't been doing it as much now that I have my own child. I read to her all day long-but not very often to myself for my own enjoyment.

I'm not sure if I can stay away from blogging ALL day because you know I will start to twitch if I do that. Then I won't be able to read if I am twitching. Anyhoo- I will definitely participate!

ZAM said...

I came here from Melanie's.

Thanks for this reading campaign and I'm definitely in. I'm so all for it because reading is a stress-reliever to me.

Bonnie Jacobs said...

I blogged about this reading challenge on my blog:
http://bonniesbooks.blogspot.com/2007/12/day-to-read.html

Yes, I'll take part in this challenge. Good idea. Thanks.

Ponnarasi Kothandaraman said...

Hi,
Nice concept. Dropped in here from Melanie's post on reading books.. Nice blog and keep writing! :)

Wendy said...

Great idea! I've posted this to my blog Novel Challenges to help promote your challenge. You can see my post here.

Amy said...

I would like to participate. I have 3 kids who are homeschooled and are big readers. They would love to participate with me.

Thanks for the great idea!

alylovezu2 said...

hey i would love to participate and I would like to read that book it sounds great! i love reading though and I am 13 i can't even count how many books i read this year :] but i believe i can do this very easily and I'll try to get some of my friends to read for fun too.

Kerry said...

Hey, my announcement post is up, finally! I'm going to try to post some inspirational posts about reading in the next couple of days. At the very least a "Reading list for 2008". :) Thanks for the inspiration!

http://theten0clockscholar.blogspot.com/2008/01/reading-day.html

Anneke said...

Hi, I came here through Jenn in Holland, and I send you an e-mail to ask for the button, and I post this message to tell you that I'd love to join!

Emily said...

What a fantastic idea!!! I can't wait to read the book - I loved the movie!!!

Brandie just linked to you on TheMotherhood.com, so it's on the homepage there now too.

oh amanda said...

FUN! I'm here from you ww & I'm a big reader! I read so much to my daughter, it's my goal that she has the same "reading under the sheets" experience that you had! I hope I can do this today & tomorrow!

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Here's my last-post-before-THE-day encouragement to my readers:
http://bonniesbooks.blogspot.com/2008/01/but-first-story-from-our-sponsor.html

I'll be reading tomorrow, but not in the position of those in my first photo of readers!

Ashley said...

I just found out about this, but I'm so on it! As soon as Lorelei goes down for her nap! Thanks for the great idea!

Kara said...

great idea!

thekoolaidmom said...

I read The Princess Bride when I was a teen. It was after I'd watched the movie, and I was dying to know if there really was a Princess Bride by S Morgenstern. I went to the library, but only found the Goldman one. I loved the book as much as the movie, and understood a lot more that I hadn't gotten with the movie (R.O.U.S.'s was one I didn't get until reading the book.)

Sorry I missed this event, do you plan on having it again?