Saturday, October 18, 2014

Dewey's 24 Hour Read-a-Thon: Mini-Challenge Edition

One of the most fun—and most delightfully distracting!—parts of the Read-a-thon is the hourly Mini-Challenge. These games-for-prizes put on by participating blogs add a regular dose of whimsy to break up the monotony of reading page after page after page. This isn't to say our chosen reads aren't absolutely enthralling, but it's a blast rushing between chapters to assemble whatever a given challenge calls for and share it with the rest of the Read-a-thon world. 

So far, I've entered two Mini-Challenges. The first, Book Staging, hosted by Kimberly at her blog, On the Wings of Books, asked that we arrange a photograph of the book alongside something from the cover, or to do with the story itself. I decided to take the newspaper boat from the cover and first chapter of Stephen King's IT a step further, and posted a proud picture of the result.

For the second, Show it Off!, over on Dead Book Darling, Kay asked for a picture of one of our favorite, most beautiful or precious volumes. I chose my leatherbound edition of Robinson Crusoe, which is not only one of the oldest volumes in my library, it's easily one of the most beautiful.

Whether or not either of these entries leads to a prize remains to be seen, but winning's not entirely the point. As with the Read-a-thon itself, it's the sharing and revelry that matter most. Plus, as luck would have it, I managed to snag a door prize earlier in the day! Given my choice of a number of excellent prizes, I went for The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, The Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made, by Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell.

"From the actor who somehow lived through it all, a “sharply detailed…funny book about a cinematic comedy of errors” (The New York Times): the making of the cult film phenomenon The Room.
In 2003, an independent film called The Room—starring and written, produced, and directed by a mysteriously wealthy social misfit named Tommy Wiseau—made its disastrous debut in Los Angeles. Described by one reviewer as “like getting stabbed in the head,” the $6 million film earned a grand total of $1,800 at the box office and closed after two weeks. Ten years later, it’s an international cult phenomenon, whose legions of fans attend screenings featuring costumes, audience rituals, merchandising, and thousands of plastic spoons. 
Hailed by The Huffington Post as “possibly the most important piece of literature ever printed,” The Disaster Artist is the hilarious, behind-the-scenes story of a deliciously awful cinematic phenomenon as well as the story of an odd and inspiring Hollywood friendship. Greg Sestero, Tommy’s costar, recounts the film’s bizarre journey to infamy, explaining how the movie’s many nonsensical scenes and bits of dialogue came to be and unraveling the mystery of Tommy Wiseau himself. But more than just a riotously funny story about cinematic hubris, “The Disaster Artist is one of the most honest books about friendship I’ve read in years” (Los Angeles Times)." —from the Amazon Book Description

I'd recently read an article about the debacle this film turned out to be, and with a reviewer claiming it to have been "like getting stabbed in the head", I couldn't pass up the chance to read the inside scoop. I can't wait to read it, although I just might do well to hold on to it until next spring's Read-a-thon comes along. 

Back to the day's fun, and more reading. Further updates to follow!


  1. It was nice that you won a prize. Now you have a gift to look forward to once everything is over. I love your book staging and I like the book your showing off. It is beautiful. Have fun.

    1. Thanks! I had a blast coming up with the book staging entry, and to cap it off I won the prize for that challenge to boot! Choosing a book to showcase was a bit more difficult, but I think I did go with a gorgeous edition in the end.

  2. You're doing great, James!!!! So glad you're with us! \0/ --Andi

    1. Thanks Andi, I'm so glad to be a part of this!