Welcome to #StartOnYourShelfathon! Read The Unread Books On Your Shelf and Help Castor the Star Collector Find The Stars

#StartOnYourShelfathon: A 2020 readathon hosted by the quiet pond. read your unread books and collect stars!


Welcome friends, to The Quiet Pond’s #StartOnYourShelfathon!

The concept of the StartOnYourShelfathon is simple: from December 18th 2019 to December 31st 2020, join us in this readathon and read as many unread books that you own on your bookshelf (physical or electronic)! (You can read the readathon’s information post here.)

XL faves copyThe number of unread books you want to try and read during the readathon is up to you – whether you have 15 unread books on your bookshelf or over 200, you set your own challenges! Ambitious participants of the StartOnYourShelfathon may want to try and aim to read every single book on their bookshelf, whereas participants who want to participate but don’t want to stress about reaching a specific goal may commit to reading three or ten books a month. However you want to participate in #StartOnYourShelfathon is entirely up to you!

Though the aim of the readathon is to help motivate you to read your unread books, what is most important is that you have fun! And we at The Quiet Pond have recruited a very special friend to help you on your StartOnYourShelfathon journey…

Meet Castor, the Star Collector

Illustration of Xiaolong the pink axolotl, reading a book.It has been a quiet and peaceful day at the Pond. You have spent the day sitting by the Pond, sitting side-by-side with Xiaolong as you both read your latest book. When Xiaolong asked you to visit yesterday, she had asked you to be at the Pond by the afternoon because an ‘important friend’ was visiting. Though most of Xiaolong’s friends have been punctual, this particular friend is hours late.

Suddenly, Xiaolong snaps her book shut and springs up onto her feet. “I think he’s here!”

Putting your book aside, you get up, brush off the dust on your clothes, but when you look around, no one is there. Xiaolong puts her hands behind her back and waits patiently. She doesn’t look too worried – so you try and not worry too.

After a few minutes pass, you hear something high above – delicate scraping and the gentle rustle of leaves. You look up, and emerging through the foliage is a sloth! You squint, and it looks like the sloth is wearing a night-blue starry bucket hat and a starry backpack.

Castor the three-toed sloth, wearing a blue bucket hat and a backpack, climbing a vine.

Though the sloth moves very slowly – very, very, very slowly – Xiaolong waits patiently, grinning warmly as the sloth slowly approaches. As the sloth climbs down, Xiaolong takes slow and measured steps to meet the sloth at the bottom of the tree.

“Castor!” she greets when the sloth arrives at the base of the tree. “Friend, you got here in record time!”

“Xiaolong! Thank you for letting me stay at the Pond.” Castor’s words are slow and deliberate, but you can hear the genuine warmth in his voice. He turns slowly to you, and give you a wide smile. “Oh, hello Xiaolong’s friend! It is so nice to meet you. I have come to the Pond because the stars are more visible here and it is the perfect place to look for them.”

Castor the Sloth, sitting and looking at a dark blue piece of paper that is glowing. Castor reaches into his backpack, and pulls out a roll of black parchment. “I want to be the greatest celestial cartographer one day, but recently I lost the map with all the stars I found during a bad windstorm.” Xiaolong pats Castor’s back, consoling him. “I was really sad. I had spent years collecting all these stars and finding them and learning their names, and I lost all my hard work. I write down all the stars I find because my memory is not very good.

“But Xiaolong encouraged me to keep trying! She reminded me that I love finding stars, so I can have fun all over again.” Castor looks at you, inquisitively. “I know I just met you, but I have a feeling that you are a curious spirit. Would you like to help me find the stars again?”

How to Help Castor!

StartOnYourShelfathon will be run by your newest visiting Pond friend, Castor the Star Collector! Help Castor find all of his precious lost stars by reading all the unread books on your bookshelves.

  • Download your very own star map in the readathon resources below.
  • Give yourself an amateur star-collector name and add it to the star map!
  • For every unread book that you read for the #StartOnYourShelfathon, that is one star found – and you can add a sparkly star to your star map!
    • Re-reads of books that you have already read do not count.
  • Collect additional stars for completing goals that you set for yourself! (Stars can be found below in the readathon resources below.)
    • Yellow stars: For finishing an unread book as part of the readathon.
    • Blue stars: For finishing a readathon goal you set for youself.
    • Red stars: For reading and finishing an unread book that ended up being a new favourite!
  • Start as many star maps as you wish to help Castor! Create constellations of your own, stick the stars wherever you wish on your star map.

Castor the Sloth, looking through a telescope.

Fill up your star map? Well done! Give your star map a constellation name. If you’d like your star map to be featured, email your completed star map along with a link (i.e., blog, twitter, instagram, etc.) where you talk about your star map and what books you read to thequietpond@gmail.com! At the end of either April 2020, August 2020, and December 2020, Castor will present all the star maps that all of you have completed!

How to Join

  1. Join the StartOnYourShelfathon anytime between Dec 13th 2019 to Dec 31st 2020!
  2. To join #StartOnYourShelfathon, create a blog post, bookstagram post, booktube video, Twitter thread, or whatever medium you wish, with ‘#StartOnYourShelfathon’ in the title or your tweet.
  3. In your post/video/thread, announce that you will be participating in the readathon. List your readathon goals and the books you plan to read! (Post templates and readathon banners can be found in the readathon resources below!)
  4. Link back to this post so that others can find this readathon and join in.

Don’t be afraid to share your progress!

Share your updates on your blog/bookstagram/booktube and social media. You are more than welcome to tag @thequietpond on Twitter in all your updates! We would love to see your progress and your star maps – in-progress and completed!

Join The Discord server!

Want to connect to others participating in #StartOnYourShelfathon? Join our Discord server – talk about anything readathon-related or bookish! Be sure to read the rules and guidelines before joining in.

✨ Join the #StartOnYourShelfathon Discord server here!

A big big big thank you to Kal at Reader Voracious for helping me put together this Discord server together – I couldn’t have put this together without you.

#StartOnYourSheldathon resources

Here, you can find resources for the readathon that you may find helpful!

Please do not remove the credit in the images and resources (i.e., do not remove, hide, or alter the text in the images and images that state that the readathon is by The Quiet Pond AND do not claim the readathon resources provided below as your own.)

Star Maps

Use the star maps below to track how many stars you are finding (and how many books you are reading)! A4 versions of the star map are also available to download and print for book clubs, library or teaching resources, or for those who need a visual aid!

Design #1


Google Drive download link: square 800×800 | A4 print [image] | A4 print [pdf]

Design #2


Google Drive download link: square 800×800 | A4 print [image] | A4 print [pdf]


Download or print these transparent stars and stick them onto your star map! (Alternatively, use your own stickers; whatever makes you happiest!)

  • Yellow stars: For finishing an unread book as part of the readathon.
  • Blue stars: For finishing a readathon goal you set for youself.
  • Red stars: For reading and finishing an unread book that ended up being a new favourite!

readathon stars

Google Drive download link: yellow star | blue star | red star| placeholder star

Readathon banner

Don’t have the time, energy, or ability to make a readathon banner? Don’t worry, because we can help you! Download the readathon banner for your readathon post, videos, or tweets.

Readathon banner

#StartOnYourShelfathon: A 2020 readathon hosted by the quiet pond. read your unread books and collect stars!

Google Drive download link: banner

Have Castor visit your posts!

Image of Castor the Sloth, looking through a telescope. #StartOnYourShelfathon The Quiet Pond.

Google Drive download link: image of Castor

#StartOnYourShelfathon Post Template

Feeling time pressured and don’t have enough time to whip up a TBR/readathon post? Feel free to use this post template! Edit the template to fit your style or what you would like to share, but please do not remove the links and image links back to The Quiet Pond. 

You can find the post template here: download on Google Drive

Let’s Start Star-Collecting!

Friends, I’m so excited to be finally launching #StartOnYourShelfathon! I had so much fun putting this readathon together and drawing all the resources, and I hope all of you will have fun reading all of your unread books in this readathon.

Xiaolong, the pink axolotl, wearing a purple flower hat and holding a brown staff.If you love participating in readathons or if you like the idea of readathons with a story, be sure to keep out on my story-driven readathon that I will be hosting from early January to mid-February – the #Pondathon! If you feel like committing to two separate readathons will be too much, don’t worry – the aim of this readathon will synergise with one of the possible teams that you can join for the Pondathon!

So friends, let’s get reading and let’s get star collecting! If you intend on participating, be sure to let me know in the comments below, tag me (@artfromafriend) on Twitter, or link back to this readathon post so that others can find you! And don’t forget to join our Discord server! Happy star-collecting! ✨

110 thoughts on “Welcome to #StartOnYourShelfathon! Read The Unread Books On Your Shelf and Help Castor the Star Collector Find The Stars

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