Readathon FAQs

Here are a few questions that come up pretty frequently about and during 24in48. Any that I missed? Leave a comment and I’ll add your questions to this list.

Q: How does 24 in 48 work? Do I have to read 24 books in 48 hours? 

A: 24 is for the number of hours, not the number of books! Over the course of 48 hours, you challenge yourself to read for 24 of those hours. This can mean reading 12 hours each day, 20 hours one day and 4 hours the next, or 24 hours straight. However the scheduling works best for you! [See also: Do I have to read for 24 hours?]

Q: When is the next readathon?

A: Mark your calendar for January  18-19, 2020!

Q: What time does the readathon start?

A: The official start time is 12:01am ET on Saturday and the official stop time is 11:59pm ET on Sunday.

Q: What if I don’t live in the Eastern timezone? 

A: You can do one of two things: you can do the readathon from midnight on Friday to midnight Sunday in your own local timezone, or you can stick to the official start and stop times, which will obviously be different for your timezone. For example, if you are in California, three hours behind New York, you can do midnight to midnight, Pacific time, which would be, 3am Saturday to 3am Monday, Eastern time. Or if you follow the official start time, your readathon would run from 9pm Friday night to 9pm Sunday night, Pacific time. Here’s a timezone calculator to help you figure it out.

Basically it’s up to you. Because 48 hours is your whole weekend, you can do whatever works best for you.

Q: Will there be prizes? 

A: Yes! Check out the prize page to see what we’ve got so far. If you’d like to donate prizes (books, gift certificates, bookish stuff, etc.) please send an email to Also, your donations through the PayPal Donate button over there in the sidebar help us to send prizes all over the world to our large international community. Please think about donating. Even $5 helps our whole community.

Q: How can I participate? 

A: Make sure you’ve signed up for the next readathon on the sign-up post, and include your main participation location and email. That location can be your own blog, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Litsy, etc. but you also don’t have to have an internet presence to participate. You can just sign up and that’s it! You’re participating.

But if you’d like to do more, you can use the hashtag #24in48 on all of those social media outlets to keep up with fellow readathon-ers, as well as check in to this blog as well as Twitter, Instagram, and Litsy during the ‘thon to take part in challenges, answer questions, and maybe win some stuff.

Q: Where can I find a full list of participants? 

A: Here! Go! Comment! Cheer each other on! You can also use this list to see if you’ve already signed up, in case you forgot (we’ve all been there.)

Q: Do I have to read for a full 24 hours? 

A: This is the goal, but many people don’t quite make it. Which is fine! The point of the 24in48 readathon is to dedicate a weekend to reading (while still allowing time for sleep and/or brunch and/or exercising and/or whatever else you might have going on in a normal weekend). You’re free to customize the readathon to best fit your life, and we encourage you to sign up if you plan to participate in any way, even if you know you won’t be able to fit in a full 24 hours! (You aren’t eligible for prizes if you don’t sign up.)

Q: How should I track my hours? 

A: There are lots of ways to stay on top of your hours. Some people use the stopwatch function on their phones to track the total hours read (just don’t hit Reset accidentally!). If you have a blog or Tumblr, etc., you can post updates periodically with your total hours, books, pages, read. But keeping track and posting updates is entirely up to you. I just ask that you’re honest in your counts when posting them here, especially as they might make you eligble for prizes.

Q: Do ebooks or audiobooks count?

A: Absolutely! It doesn’t matter what format you consume your books, just the hours you spend doing so. (In fact, I highly recommend a walk at the end of each day, with an audiobook in your ears, to stretch out and take a break from sitting all weekend.)

Q: Can I read for charity? 

A: Absolutely! Every time we do this thing, at least a couple of people read for charity. They pledge based on the number of pages or books or hours read and donate money according to their reading goals. Need some ideas of charities? This list of literacy organizations is a good place to start, or do a Google search for literacy organizations in your area for giving back locally.

Q: Can I read whatever books I want? 

A: Of course! Participants are encouraged to pick whatever books they want to read over the course of 24in48, across any length, medium, genre, you name it. We are encouraging readers to think intentionally about the diversity of their reading for this event, but we do not require any particular book selections to participate in 24in48.

58 thoughts on “Readathon FAQs

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