Avast, ye bookish bilge rats! In honor of my love of both pirates and readathons, I’m pleased to be announcing the Pirateathon. It be a month-long readathon with piratical prompts, weekend sprints, and the chance to make yer fortune or reputation as a shelf pirate, savvy?
What: A game-style readathon where you’re a pirate captain and earn gold, reputation, and ships in your fleet by reading.
When: September 1-30, 2022
Where: Primarily on Twitter, with weekly recaps here on Bethwyrm.com. Participation does not require that you engage on either of those platforms, though!
Why: This readathon is meant to be silly fun that will hopefully inspire to you tackle your TBR or help you get through a reading slump.
How do I sign up?
Sign the Ship’s Register to join the in the readathon.
Starting September 1st, log your completed books in the Voyage Log. Books may be logged until 11:59pm EST September 30th.
Should I post about it?
Please feel free to post or tweet about the readathon as often as you’d like. Use the hashtag #pirateathon so Scurvy Sal can see it.
Once you complete prompts for your ship type and pirate flag, you’ll have access to images of those. I recommend you use Pixlr to add your flag to your ship and any other embellishments you’d like…then show her off wherever you wish!
Acquire a Ship: Read a book that’s 200+ pages long. The bigger the book, the bigger your ship. This prompt only needs to be completed once.
- 200-300 pages: Sloop
- 301-400 pages: Schooner
- 401-500 pages: Frigate
- 501+ pages: Brigantine
Hoist the Colors: Read a book whose cover is predominantly one color. That’s the color of your pirate flag, matey! This prompt only needs to be completed once.
Name Yer Vessel: Read a book whose title shares a word in common with the book from Acquire a Ship and/or Hoist the Colors (this can be “a” or “the”). This prompt only needs to be completed once.
Figurehead (10 bonus points): Read a book with a female-identifying main character. This prompt can be completed multiple times.
Treasure Map (1 gold for every page read): Read a book you expect to rate as a 5-star read. This prompt can be completed multiple times.
Mutiny! (1 gold for every page read): Read a book with an ensemble cast (more than two MCs). This prompt can be completed multiple times.
Scurvy (1 fleet ship for every page read): Read a book you’ve owned for at least 3 (three) years. This prompt can be completed multiple times.
Port Royal (1 fleet ship for every page read): Read a book featuring a pirate (fiction, nonfiction, space pirates, airship pirates- as long as there’s a pirate featured, it counts). This prompt can be completed multiple times.
Cannon & Saber (1 reputation point for every page read): Read a book written by an author of color (Black, Indigenous, Asian, etc.). This prompt can be completed multiple times.
White Squall (1 reputation point for every page read): Read an apocalyptic/post-apocalyptic story. This prompt can be completed multiple times.
NOTE: One book may count toward up to 3 (three) prompts!
September 3rd-4th and 17th-18th
These 48-hour reading sprints provide a chance to announce your challenge across Twitter, or respond to someone else’s.
It works like this:
- Scurvy Sal will announce a Book Broadside on Twitter.
- Reply to her tweet or post your own (using #pirateathon) with your pirate moniker, ship name, and your challenge.
This could be something like:
“Red Mac of The Flying Scotsman challenges ye bilge rats of the #pirateathon this Book Broadside. I be aimin’ to read 400 pages. Can ye best me?”.
You may also choose to respond to someone else’s challenge, such as:
“Avast, Red Mac! Canonball the Fierce of Boaty McBoaterson sees yer challenge and will meet ye on the high seas, fer I intend to read 500 pages this Book Broadside.”
- Once a challenge has been laid, Scurvy Sal will record it.
- During the Book Broadside, read and log your pages as you normally would.
- After the Book Broadside ends, Scurvy Sal will post the results of any called challenges, such as: “Red Mac of The Flying Scotsman was spotted in fearsome combat with Canonball the Fierce of Boaty McBoaterson, and though the battle was close, ’twas Red Mac who emerged the victor with 413 pages read, to Canonball’s 302.”
*These reading sprints are meant in good fun- harassment, inappropriate language, or belligerent behavior will not be tolerated.
- How do I win?
Read books! Depending on the prompt you choose, and how many pages you read for that prompt, you can gather large amounts of gold, garner yourself a fearsome reputation, and/or grow your pirate fleet to an impressive size. Point totals will be tallied after the readathon ends (September 30th) and posted here and on Twitter shortly thereafter.
- Can I play an actual, historical pirate?
You’ll be asked to come up with your own unique pirate moniker when you sign up, so Scurvy Sal can report the doings accurately (and possibly give you a shout out on Twitter).
- Who’s Scurvy Sal?
Scurvy Sal is our shanty master, and she loves recording and reporting on the latest to-do around the seas (a.k.a. Twitter). This may include surprise book prompts, challenges, observations from the Spanish Main, and more. Participation via Twitter is entirely optional!
- How many prompts can one book count toward?
One book can count toward up to 3 (three) prompts. This may change in future iterations of the readathon. For example, you could read a book that counts toward Hoist The Colors (mostly one color on the cover), Mutiny (ensemble cast), and Port Royal (it’s about pirates). Or you could read a book that counts toward White Squall (post-apocalyptic) and Figurehead (female-identifying MC). It’s up to you!
- How many books can I read for it?
As many or as few as you’d like! The baseline requirement is creating your ship, naming her, and hoisting a flag (each of these three prompts only needs to be met once). Then there are 7 (seven) optional prompts, which can each be met multiple times. However, this is meant to be a fun, relaxed readathon, not a stiff competition. There’s no minimum or maximum reading required.
- Do audiobooks count?
- Do comics, graphic novels, or manga count?
- Do I have to read prompts in specific order?
Nope! Though the “Name Yer Vessel” prompt requires that you’ve picked a book for either the “Acquire a Ship” prompt or the “Hoist the Colors” prompt.
- Do I have to pick gold or fleet or reputation?
Nope! You can read as many or as few books of any length of any of those optional prompts. The difference between them just allows Scurvy Sal to correctly report on your piratical successes.
- So what’s the actual difference between gold, fleet, and reputation in the readathon?
These are just fun ways of building your character. Having the most gold, like Samuel Bellamy, the biggest fleet, like Zheng Yi Sao, or the most fearsome reputation, like Blackbeard, were all ways of securing power on the high seas.
- What if I DNF a book?
You can still count the pages read. For instance, if you stopped reading at page 50, when you submit the book in the Voyages log, enter “Pages Read” as 50.
- What does the Name Yer Vessel prompt mean?
For example, if the book I read for the “Acquire a Ship” prompt was Forest of a Thousand Lanterns, I could chose The Forest of Hands and Teeth for the “Name Yer Vessel” prompt, as they both have the word forest in the title.
See you September 1st, mateys!
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: