I recently read about Jolabokflod (which describes the December-heavy Icelandic publishing schedule that is tied to their tradition of giving each other books for Christmas Eve and then spending the evening reading). This naturally sounded very cozy to me, though not quite workable as is to fold into my family’s existing holiday traditions. AND THEN…I came across this stupendous post about how to host a March Madness style book tournament and realized that, while that specific how-to focuses on classrooms, I totally have the tech chops to work out the same sort of thing. If you’ll look carefully, you will see nothing up my sleeves. *Clears throat and makes a grandly dramatic gesture.*
I will now attempt to connect more with friends and family over books during the darker days of the year without adding more pressure to socialize in person to anyone’s plates.
Want to play?
Here’s how it’s gonna go:
Step 1: Suggest a read before the end of November.
What were your favorite reads this year? All genres/formats welcome. Individual short stories and poems are okay. If you suggest a complete collection of either, however, I will buy a copy to beat you with, so it might be in your best self interest to stick with thinner volumes. (Kidding. Sort of. But I won’t include collections directly in the Step 2 voting list because I want to see each piece evaluated on its own merits.) Leave a comment here (or message me on Twitter or Facebook, whatever). Do it before the end of November.
Step 2: Vote on what you want to see in the lineup.
I’ll put up a ranked voting sort of poll once everyone’s suggestions are in and send the link out to everyone who gave me book suggestions. You’ll have approximately a fortnight to rank your picks according to either what you have read or would like to read.
Step 3: Make predictions!
On my birthday (December 16th), I will release a tournament line-up based on the top 16 choices. This is not a money-betting game, unless you all want to come up with a way to turn it into a fundraiser for a cause that supports literacy education (which I will totally contribute money to, but don’t ask me to figure out fundraiser logistics–if anyone volunteers to manage it, I’ll help with the communication of logistics). You can, however, make your guesses about the outcome in the comments in order to receive either public praise or mild humiliation for your predictive skills once the total tally comes in. (I will figure out some easy way to fill out a bracket for this by then…definitely going one step at a time here.)
Step 4: Read and vote!
I’ll set some arbitrary timeline for completely this thing (probably sometime in January) when I put the lineup together. In the meantime, we will all go out, read each other’s favorite books, have good conversations about said books, and vote on our favorite choices. Don’t ask me exactly how the voting mechanics will work: I will figure it out by December 16th and let you know then. (See above re: one step at a time. : )
Step 5: Win!
This is one of those things where “winning” is getting a feeling of satisfaction from doing something that’s good for your soul. This means, of course, that you really can’t lose, so why not give it a whirl?
Sound like fun? Great! Leave a comment and tell me what you want to vote on!