#24in48: The Social Distancing Edition

Readers, we miss you.

Your hosts have been busy busy busy with many non-bookish things of late: a baby, job shifts (of both the good and bad varieties), family demands, the rigors of day-to-day living in the current news cycles, international travel. It’s been a lot. And it’s why we decided to pause our beloved 24in48 readathon this winter, skipping the regularly planned January edition while we figure out what the future of this corner of the bookternet might look like (more to come on that; thanks for your patience!).

I mean. Can you even? One of us MADE THAT. 

But in the meantime … we miss you. And as more and more countries are implementing social distancing recommendations (if not actual quarantines), we decided it was time to find comfort in books and the community that loves them.

Which brings us to the Social Distancing Readathon.

Stay home.

Wash your hands.

Read books.

March 21 & 22. 

It’s that simple. No prizes. No hourly challenges. No requirements. Just a chance to reconnect with this amazing bookish community (online! no hand sanitizer required!), read some good books, and talk about them with other readers.

This spontaneous Social Distancing Readathon will take place next weekend, (officially) starting 12 a.m. EST on March 21st. You know the drill by now; adjust your timezone as desired, and read with us on Saturday (21st) and Sunday (22nd) from wherever you are in the world. 

So, who’s in? Sign up here. Connect with us on Instagram and Twitter, and we’ll use the hashtag #StayHome24in48 all weekend.  

virrtual hug

Plan on reading—with us—a whole lot.

We’ll see you on the internet, where digital hugs have no virus transmission risk. 


Kerry, Kristen, & Rachel 

An Update: January’s Readathon

Hello and happy fall, readathoners!

Your founder and co-host Rachel here with an update for January’s scheduled readathon.

I started #24in48 in 2011 as a small (literally I think there was a dozen of us) online reading weekend.  As you know if you’ve been participating in #24in48 for the last year or so, the biannual event has grown significantly every January and July and the growth has been exponential, particularly over the last three readathon weekends. This past July we topped 3,000 participants. Kristen, Kerry, and I are so thrilled that so many of you join us year after year and pull your friends and family and fellow readers into this amazing community. And as that community grows, the more demanding and logistically complicated the readathon gets, particularly if we want to continue to serve you as readers and participants the best we can.

Kristen and Kerry joined me to help manage and host, which helped us continue to grow and evolve. We’ve been experimenting with ways to make participating more fun and engaging AND with making it easier for us to continue to put on this event twice a year. Unfortunately, our lives have also gotten more complicated and our ability to run the readathon the way we want (and the way you deserve) is no longer possible.

What this means for now is that we’re going to be canceling the Jan. 18-19, 2020 readathon. (I know, sad faces all around).

The three of us will reconvene in the spring to determine if we’ll be moving forward with future readathons, and if so, what form those will take. Stayed tuned and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, or subscribe to posts here to be notified when we make an announcement.

We have loved hosting the ‘thon for you guys and we thank all of you (and especially our publishing partners) for your support.

t hanks

Happy reading,

Rachel (and Kristen and Kerry)

Are you ready to #24in48!?

HELLO READERS! We are so, so excited about the upcoming #24in48, we can barely contain ourselves. Your co-hosts are working frantically behind the scenes to be sure everything is ready for the weekend, and in the meantime, we wanted to be sure to share a few key highlights as we count down these last two days to the official ‘thon kickoff.

FIRST UP: Be sure to subscribe to our site via email to receive notifications/alerts when a new post goes live (link in sidebar!). This is the easiest way to ensure you don’t miss a check-in/door prize announcement, or a challenge to participate in! 

A new post goes live on the site every three hours, and if it’s your first time joining us and you have questions about how the challenges work, DON’T WORRY: just wait and see! Trust us, we give you all the instructions in the post! And if, by chance, you do miss an email notification, we push all of our posts to our various social platforms when they go live; we don’t want any of you to miss them either! 

Your hosts have picked our book stacks for the weekend, and given a little explanation of why we picked what we did. (While there are no rules or requirements for your weekend reading, we do encourage everyone to read diversely and to have a larger stack than you may need for the weekend so you have options to choose from!)

Hour 0, aka the official kickoff of the July #24in48 readathon, will be at 12:01am on Saturday, July 20th, Eastern time. You can find a time zone converter to track the official hours in your own time zone here, or if you prefer to adjust Hour 0 to be 12:01am on Saturday in your own time zone, that’s fine too! We cover that all in our FAQ, which also has answers to lots of other commonly asked questions (What if I don’t read 24 hours? How do I win prizes? Where do I sign up?)

Speaking of sign ups, make sure you sign up! We’ll have lots of prizes over the weekend – door prizes, challenge prizes, and special prize pack chances for those of you who manage to read the full 24 hours – but prizes are only available to those who are officially signed up for the ‘thon. You can sign up here, or check whether or not you already did sign up here.

ron weasley eats and reads

Get your snack stacks as ready as your book stacks, be sure to follow us on social media and be ready to check back here for regular updates throughout the weekend, and you’ll be ready to #24in48! We can’t wait to start reading with you all… let the countdown begin!

Social Media Links: Instagram | Facebook | Litsy | Twitter

Snacks, Stacks, & Community: Readers share how they #24in48

Every few rounds of 24in48, we update our How To Readathon: #24in48 Style post. But since we did that this past July, this year we wanted to do something different. We talked to some of our bookternet friends, and asked them what they love about 24in48, how they approach the weekend, and if they had any unique advice, tips, or experiences they wanted to share.

They delivered and then some, so whether this is your first time or your tenth (this has been going since 2012, y’all, wut), be sure to check out what your fellow readers have to say.

At the end of this post, we also round things out with some specific tried and true book recs for your readathon stack from your #24in48 cohosts. You can download a PDF of our recs here!

Don’t forget: You can find our how to post here, FAQs here, sign-ups here, and participant list here! Don’t be afraid to DM us on social media or send us an email at 24in48readathonofficial [at] gmail [dot] com if you have any questions you can’t find the answer to!

💖 From Michele (@ultrabookgeek):

24in48 is definitely a classic example of it’s about the journey not the destination. It’s not about how long you read or how much you read. It’s about setting aside time to do one activity you really enjoy and making it as simple or extravagant as you wish. You can read in bed for 4 hours or make it to 24 with a million snacks, and tracking systems while ensconced in your coziest chair. As someone who participates time again the best advice I have to offer is to read in blocks of time, have some breaks for eating and napping, stay updated on social media for prizes and other peoples updates and have lots of snacks and drinks on hand. Lastly, make sure your family knows what you’re up to and knows to give you space as needed. Pick some books you’ve been meaning to read, find a cozy spot and happy reading!

😻 From Melissa (@balletbookworm):

How to have a successful 24-in-48 Readathon (from a reader who has both read for the full 24 hours…and has not even been close on occasion):

  1. Pick out an over-ambitious TBR “stack” (digital and paper and audio formats included): Choose a wide variety of lengths, formats, and genres—this narrows your actual TBR list and prevents aimless meandering around your house wondering about to “read next.” You can even start by knocking off books you have already started (finishing a book right away is a great boost to the start of Readathon). And don’t forget books that aren’t usually considered Readathon fodder like big poetry collections, classroom reading/textbooks, etc. – all reading counts in a Readathon.
  2. Have your favorite junk food at hand, if you like, but don’t forget to have a balanced meal, too: 24in48 isn’t a good time to gorge yourself on junk just because READATHON OMG or try out those new lobster-cheddar balls in the freezer case at the grocery store (trust me, both of those things lead to 2am indigestion regrets). Pick up some trail mix with dried fruit so you can have a snacky/crunchy good time to mix with your favorite candy. Have water standing by as well because as much as many of us are COFFEE DEATH BEFORE DECAF FIGHT ME, hydrating does help with the late-Readathon bleahs. A little advance prep for a stew in the CrockPot or a lasagna in the oven also helps cut down on aimless wandering at mealtime (this time in the kitchen, haha).
  3. Don’t sweat errands/chores, etc. because it’s 24in48: you’ve got 48 hours to play with here, but if you are out and about for periods of time (the kids have a soccer match, or you have to take the car to the mechanic, or do the grocery shopping, etc.) bring along a kicky book (or two) or fire up an audiobook on your phone or tablet (I’m extremely partial to my library’s Overdrive/Libby collection). Audiobooks also make great road companions if you have to drive around for a while and if the kids are in the car, or if the grownups can’t agree on what to listen to, a children’s book like Matilda or the Lemoncello series can keep everyone entertained for hours. And, like I said, all reading counts in a Readathon.
  4. AND IF YOU DON’T GET 24 HOURS OF READING DONE, CELEBRATE WHAT YOU DID READ! The biggest point of Readathon is just reading and sharing that love of reading with the rest of the 24in48 community. So if your plans didn’t work out or someone got sick or you fell asleep or it just worked out to only a few hours of reading time scraped together here or there, that’s OK. Gremlins won’t come after you (and if they do, we’ll fight them for you). Readathon is for having fun. But if you did make it to all 24 hours of reading….HIGH FIVES FOREVER

📚 From Sue (at Doddyaboutbooks):

The 24 in 48 is my very favourite readathon (you always have a special place in your heart for your first, right?) I have never made the full 24 hours (I made it to 19 once which I was totally stoked about). For me the readathon experience is about getting a bunch of reading done, and however much that is is great.

Here are some of my hot tips for a successful readathon:

Have lots of choices available. You will want to feel like you are getting somewhere, so if you have some poetry, novellas and graphic novels on your TBR, now is a great time to tackle them. This will also help keep your attention when you’re feeling tired. Audiobooks are also great for when your eyes get tired or if you have to do chores. Leave the Odyssey and Don Quixote fo another time – you will thank me.

Don’t be afraid to nap! Don’t keep dragging yourself on if you need match sticks for your eyelids! Sleep at night and nap during the day if you need to – it will help you concentrate.

Check in on social media. The blog has 3 hourly check ins, which is s nice time to give yourself a bit of a break and see how others are going. Plus there are prizes!

Snacks. I’m not much of a snacker, but staying hydrated is super important. I tend to stick with water and tea. Also, premake any meals so you just need to reheat them 😉

Last but not least – have fun! That’s the whole point right?

✨ From Sarah:

How I Readathon:
I’ve been most successful by choosing a stack of short (under 200 pages) books to have on hand, as well as a regular length engrossing audiobook. Every time I need to get up to do something, I put in my headphones and switch to the audiobook. This allows for almost continuous reading. The stack of books helps because then I can just grab whichever one looks good next instead of having to go choose from a larger selection. Having shorter books allows for a feeling of accomplishment throughout the weekend. Finishing a book every few hours motivates me to keep going!

💻 And finally, from Katy’s “So you want to do a readathon” post following our July 24in48 (at thebookishcronk):

Don’t Underestimate the Power of a Great Selection of Snacks

My very first readathon I had no snacks or really any food in my house. This was a mistake. You have to have some snacks or meals planned out or at least some easy finger food like a sandwich. I tried to eat ramen my first one readathon and it was Not Good. (Picture a book with broth on it. Sad day indeed). Also I tried to read and cook at the same time and I tripped over my cat. True story.

Preparing a Book Stack and Sharing it with Your Friends is Fun!

I actually really enjoy this part even though I haven’t had a chance to create my stack until this evening. For me, it’s the dream of books I could get done this weekend, but don’t feel like you have to stick to it if something on your bookcase appeals to you after a really intense book. I also recommend that you have a few shorter books and/or graphic novels included. Sometimes, that’s a perfect break from novel-reading that can get you across the 24 hour mark.

We’ll see you in a few weeks, ‘thonners! (We can’t wait)



Get your 24in48 swag!

I’m not even going to write up a whole preamble here, folks, because… IT’S SWAG TIME.

We’ve set up our teepublic shop, which is full of shirts and mugs and stickers and totes; all the 24in48 merch your heart desires! We commissioned two “My weekend is all booked” designs, and also have some shiny new logo merch available!

Screenshot one

Screenshot of the 24in48 storefront on Teepublic showing our designs on three mugs

You can find our storefront here, and click around by way of desired merch (e.g., click mugs if that’s what your heart desires, crewneck sweatshirts if you wanna be cozy, or onesies if you have a tiny reader spending the weekend with you).


Teepublic handles all order fulfillment and shipping (they ship internationally, too!)

We’re SO EXCITED to share this with y’all; you know what to do. Get your ‘thon swag on.


How to Readathon: #24in48 Style

Hello, dearest reader friends! We are ONE WEEK out from the next 24in48 Readathon, and we can’t. freaking. wait.

As we get closer to the main event, we wanted to be sure to give you all an updated, condensed version of our “How to Readathon” Guide (you can find the original version here and the January 2018 version here if you’re into archives of stuff).

The 24in48 Readathon has grown every year, and we’re excited to welcome over (as of this writing) 1,000 readers for July 2018 (will we break 2,000 readers? We think so, but help us get there by spreading the word to all your reader friends!) More participants means more prizes, more ways to participate, more platforms to engage with us (and other readers) on, and more questions! So we’re doing our best to lay out answers to questions that are a bit more nuanced than the FAQs (though if you’re new to 24in48 and looking for some basics, be sure to check those out!).

So whether this is your 10th readathon or your 1st, take a spin through the how-tos, what’s-whats, and where’s-thats below. If there’s anything we’ve missed, drop us a line on any one of our social channels or shoot us an email!


  • Every ‘thon, we have a few people who don’t sign up because they don’t think they can make it the full 24 hours. It’s perfectly ok if you can’t hit 24 hours! You should sign up anyway! You will only be eligible for door prizes and challenge prizes if you are signed up. And there’s no punishment for not making it the full 24 hours.

Stay in Touch with Us!

  • There is a LOT going on in the 48 hours of the 24in48 Readathon, and we want to be sure you don’t miss out on anything. So be sure to follow us on your social platform(s) of choice, where you can see official #24in48 announcements, engage with other readers, see what books are being read and recommended, participate in challenges… you get the idea:
  • Pro tip: tagging all of your social posts with #24in48 to cheer on your fellow readathoners is great, but make sure your accounts are public (at least for this weekend) so others can cheer you on, too! 24in48 is a great way to connect with other readers across the bookternet (behind the scenes fact: it’s what brought all your hosts’ lives together #HeartEyesFaceForever).

Books, Books, Books

  • New this year! Behind the scenes, your co-hosts have made every effort to be intentional about diversity in this event, from prizes to book stacks to increased engagement with international participants (more on this decision, and what it means, here). While participants are encouraged to read whatever books they want during the event, we hope you’ll consider diversity when picking your own 24in48 TBR stacks.
  • New this year! We want to know what you all are reading! We love stats, and want to collect some about the many, many, many books read during this 48-hour window. We’ll have a “Books Read” form live during the weekend and for the week or so after the event for participants to log the books they read during the event.
  • New this year! Follow us on Goodreads to see what your co-hosts are reading, look for book recommendations if you find yourself in a ‘thon slump, or want to view the results of that “Books Read” form we mentioned above! We’ll be collecting them all here.

Tracking Time Read

  • To be eligible for prize packs reserved for participants who read a full 24 hours, you’ll need to keep track of your time read.
  • There are a number of ways to do this, but the most popular/successful is using the stopwatch function on your smartphone or by Googling “stopwatch.” (The Bookout app is also great, but I don’t know enough about it to include instructions here.)
  • Every time you start reading hit start and pause when you stop to take a break. Simple! It doesn’t have to be exact, but because this is on the honor system don’t abuse the clock (no letting it run while you nap, pals).
  • Pro tip: Take a screenshot (esp. if you’re using your phone) every time you stop the clock, just in case you accidentally reset it. You can use multiple screenshots to prove your reading time if needed.

stopwatch screen capture

Challenges and Check-ins

  • Every three hours, a new post will publish on the blog, alternating between challenges and check-ins.
  • The Hour 0 challenge will always be an intro survey, and the Hour 48 post will always be a closing survey.
  • Challenges: every six hours (Hours 6, 12, 18, 24…), you’ll have the opportunity to do a fun little task (usually photo-based) to be entered for a prize. Last time around, we switched things up a little and had y’all submit your challenge entry through an embedded Google Form in the challenge post, rather than comment on the post itself. That worked well on all sides, so we’re bringing it back going forward!
  • Check-ins: If you entered your info on the sign-up post, you’re automatically entered to win a random door prize as long as you’re actively participating on one of the platforms you listed in the sign-up form (i.e. Twitter or Instagram).
  • The best way to keep up with these posts is to subscribe using the Follow button in the bottom right corner of the blog, which will push an email to you every time a new post is published.                                   subscribe button screen capture
  • Pro tip: Even though you are free to participate in the full 48 hours (midnight Friday to midnight Sunday) using your local time zone, following Eastern Time in the US (the official readathon time zone) is the best way to ensure you’re catching as many of the challenges/check-ins as possible. Posts are labeled by hour number, not time (Hour 6 vs. 6:00am on Saturday), so if you start Hour 0 in concert with the readathon itself you’ll have an easier time catching all of the challenges. If you need help figuring out what that translates to in your local time, check out this world clock conversion tool. (The downside, of course, is that if you’re on the opposite side of the world, your reading weekend might spill into Monday or start on Friday instead. If you decide to use local time, you won’t be penalized for having not started or starting early re: prize drawings.)

Adding Social Media to the Form: 

  • Often, the best way to complete the challenge is to take a photo and link it in the form answer box. You can do this by posting the photo to your social media platform of choice and dropping the link into the form (your entry won’t be counted unless it’s submitted through the form).
  • For Instagram: Your post should have a three-dot menu at the top right. Select that, then “share”. From there, it should give you an option to “copy link”. Your account must be public (or the @24in48 insta account needs to be following you already) in order to enter.
  • For Litsy: share a direct link to your post by clicking on the arrow at the bottom of the post and selecting how you want to share it (I usually email the link to myself in order to submit the form from my computer, but if you’re using your phone you can just copy and paste the link from you’ve shared it to and add it to the form). For the below post, this is the direct link: http://litsy.com/p/eGlZMm9PZGYw.                                                                        Litsy screenshot
  • IMPORTANT: Due to the number of participants, form submissions  that only include a handle (i.e. @24in48) and directions to go look for the entry will not be eligible. You must include a direct link or the actual image.
  • If you don’t dig social media, you’ll have the option to enter the challenges with a line of text as your entry (where it makes sense with the challenge theme) in place of a link to a social post.

Winning and Claiming Prizes

  • You MUST be signed up on the original sign up form in order to be eligible for prizes. You can sign up after the readathon begins, but you can’t win anything unless you’ve signed up. Your sign up information MUST include not just the platform you’re participating on but the actual place we can go to find you, be that the URL or the handle. (If you’ve already signed up, you can edit your entry by going to the email you received and clicking through to edit or email us at 24in48readathonofficial@gmail.com.)
  • Even if your readathon weekend doesn’t contain much social media or regular check-ins (which is a perfectly fine way to participate), make sure you post something about the readathon when you start the weekend on one of the platforms you entered when you sign up so we know that you actually are participating. You’re still eligible for check-in prizes as long as we can see that you’re reading along.
  • If you are staying away from social for the weekend, don’t forget to check the blog periodically (or at least once at the very end) to see if you won something during a check-in or challenge. Prize winners will be announced throughout the weekend, so scroll through all the posts to check for your name.
  • As soon as you see that you’ve won a prize, hop on over to the prize page (which is being updated as prizes are added) and select your first, second, and third choices. If you live in the US, please do not select any of the international prizes unless that is all that is left. The sooner you claim your prize, the higher the likelihood you’ll get your first choice. The prize page will be updated periodically throughout the weekend so you’ll have a good idea of what’s still available.
  • Pro tip: Make sure that the information you submit through the challenge forms is consistent with your sign up information; if we can’t find you, you’ll lose out.

I hope this helps as you’re prepping for the ‘thon. If you have any follow-up or additional questions, leave ’em in the comments below or reach out on any of our social channels and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

See you soon, readers!

New and Improved FAQs!

Got questions about the 24in48 Readathon? Go check out the updated 24in48 FAQ page!

We’ve tried to cover as many of the basics as we can there, but if we’ve missed something, feel free to drop us a question in the comments here, shoot us an email, or find us on any of our social channels and we’ll get back to you ASAP (Twitter is probably fastest, if your question is pressing).

And stay tuned for a more in-depth and completely up-to-date version of the How to Readathon post coming later this week, which will include instructions for challenges, prizes, sign-ups, you name it.

Still haven’t signed up? Why on earth not? Get thee to the July 2018 24in48 Sign Up Form and join us!

We’re just over a week away from the start of the next ‘thon, and there are already over 1,000 readers participating. We are blown away by the love in this community, and can’t wait to spend a weekend reading with you.