How long does the challenge last? A year to whenever. I'm planning on keeping the site for quite a while. And once you join, you can contribute for as long as you want. So this could be as 'ongoing' as you want to make it.
When does the challenge begin? Officially, January 1, 2008. Unofficially, whenever you want to start reading and reviewing!
What books are eligible? To qualify for the Cardathon Challenge a book needs to meet one of the following criteria:
1) a book written by Orson Scott Card
2) a book edited/compiled by Orson Scott Card
3) a book with an introduction by Orson Scott Card
4) a book reviewed by Orson Scott Card on his official website.
How many books are we talking about? I'd suggest choosing 6-12 books to read. Along with alternates, of course. Always feel free to list more alternates than 'official' choices. Essentially, you could read as many or as few as you wanted. Although, I hope that given a year, you would read at least six books. If you should read all the books on your list, feel free to add more.
How many books must be written by Card? I'd hope that you would choose at least one or two books for your list. But you can choose many other authors as long as they've been mentioned and/or recommended by Card. This leaves the selection process very open-ended, and gives you many, many options.
Do I have to be a sci-fi fan? No. You can be a newbie to the field. (Or a devoted fan.) Prior experience is not required. If you're a fan of realistic fiction, science fiction, fantasy, historical fiction, young adult fiction, mysteries, horror, etc. I really truly believe there is something for everyone to enjoy! Card has reviewed lots of adult books, many young adult books, a few picture books, and even a few board books. So there is truly something for everyone.
Do I have to be an Orson Scott Card fan? No. Not necessarily. You can be a newbie and be trying Orson Scott Card for the first time.
But how will I know which books are eligible? I have listed the books meeting the first three criteria in the sidebar. I will be sorting through his review columns in the days and weeks leading up to the official start date. I will be making individual posts about those books. So looking in archives will give you a list of those. Feel free to go to his site and search for yourself if you like. And feel free to choose books that fulfill other challenges you're already participating in!
Once I make my list, can I change my mind? Yes. You can change your mind at any point. Card will keep reviewing books in his weekly column as the months go by (now-December 2008) and you can always change your list to incorporate new titles. Also, always feel free to abort a book. If you've started a book and it's not just working for you, by all means abandon it in favor of something else! No use suffering through a book because you feel it's 'required' because it's on your list.
What do I do to 'officially' join this challenge? Leave a comment with your name and email address. I'll send you an email inviting you to contribute to the site. You can post your reviews on this site and/or your own site. (I will be posting mine here and on my other site, Becky's Book Reviews). Your reviews can be as long or as short as you want. You can be rambling or concise. It's all up to you! I would also suggest that you post about the challenge on your own blog, if you have one, to let as many people know about the challenge as possible!
Don't want to contribute to the site? Prefer to Mr. Linky? Click to add your post with a list of books. Just be sure to come back to the site regularly and let us know when you've got a new review up!
Don't feel comfortable posting your email address for all the world to see? You can email me privately to join. Just be sure to mention the words Cardathon or Challenge in the subject line!
Is there a button or banner? Yes. Foxy Writer has made one for us. It's at the top of the post now. And there are two smaller ones below! Isn't it great?! Thank you very much :)
Are there prizes involved? Not at this stage. I don't have any to offer at this point. Nor the money to ship them, but the 'rewards' will be in the reading and community-building. I have always found that reading is its own reward.