On the Road Read-a-Long :: Sign Ups & Starting Post

Throughout June and July we’ll be reading On the Road by jack Kerouac for our Read-a-Long. I’ve not read any Kerouac, but I have read about the Beats and have read selections of Ginsberg’s writing. I’m looking forward to reading this book if only to be able to say, “yes, I have read On the Road.” This is actually a book I’m not expecting to like – so I’m very glad to be reading it with others who will help keep me motivated. Who knows, maybe I’ll be pleasantly surprised!

Please note: I would greatly appreciate you reading through “How It Works” at the bottom of the page before signing on… it’s most helpful to me to have you do so. 

Some Facts About the Read-a-Long:

  • You do not have to be a book blogger to join.
  • We will be reading the book in June & July (8 weeks), with the first discussion happening on Friday, June 8th / the book is 307 pages (paperback, Penguin edition) so that’s roughly 5 pages a day.
  • Don’t be intimidated. We will be going at a slow pace and discussing the book throughout our reading. The discussions are quite fun, and make the reading process very enjoyable!

What is On the Road about?  

On the Road chronicles Jack Kerouac’s years traveling the North American continent with his friend Neal Cassady, “a sideburned hero of the snowy West.” As “Sal Paradise” and “Dean Moriarty,” the two roam the country in a quest for self-knowledge and experience. Kerouac’s love of America, his compassion for humanity, and his sense of language as jazz combine to make On the Road an inspirational work of lasting importance.

Kerouac’s classic novel of freedom and longing defined what it meant to be “Beat” and has inspired every generation since its initial publication more than forty years ago. (via goodreads.com)

Interesting tidbits about the author, Jack Kerouac:

(3:43 minute video via biography.com)

Please let me know in the comments section of this post if you are interested! Hope you’ll join us, the more the merrier! Below is a break down of  the reading schedule. Friday, February 24 will be the official starting day for reading, so if you’re joining you’ll want to grab your books by then (as our first discussion will happen the following Friday, March 2nd). Please take care to sign up with the name you are using for the rest of the read-a-long. 

If you are choosing to join us after this week, you have until the second week to do so – please keep in mind that you must be caught up and able to comment about the story by the end of the week that you are joining to be added to the list.


The following is the reading and posting schedule for this read-a-long. Please note, we will be reading roughly 38 pages per week (about 5 pages a day). Because it is always easier for us to stop at chapters (rather than on page numbers, because of different editions), I’ve had to round to the nearest chapter each week. This means that some weeks are longer than others, but I’ve tried to keep it as close to 5 pages a day as possible. Please look at the week’s page amount to best plan your reading in order to keep up.


Beginning Friday, June 1st and ending Friday, July 27th.


Week #/ dates :: Place in which to STOP (For example: for week one, stop reading and put a bookmark in when you get to chapter 7)

Week One/ June 1-7 :: Part 1, Chapter 7
Week Two/ June 8-14 :: Part 1, Chapter 12
Week Three/ June 15-21 :: Part 2, Chapter 3
Week Four/ June 22-28 :: Part 2, Chapter 8
Week Five/ June 29- July 5 :: Part 3, Chapter 3
Week Six/ July 6-12 :: Part 3, Chapter 9
Week Seven/ July 12-19 :: Part 4, Chapter 4
Week Eight/ July 20-26 :: The End


Post #/ date post should be up on blog:

Start up Post/ Today!
Week One/ June 8th
Week Two/ June 15th
Week Three/ June 22nd
Week Four/ June 29th
Week Five/ June 6th
Week Six/ June 13th
Week Seven/ June 20th
Week Eight/ June 27th (Final Review)

** Please don’t forget to come to this blog each week to share your thoughts in the comments section of the weekly Read-a-Long discussion (see below for more information).**

How it Works:

  1. Each week, on Friday, I will post my thoughts about the week’s reading. You will have from Friday through the following Thursday to post yours. If you are stuck on what to comment about, you can respond to my post or others’ comments. Regardless, you MUST check in each week (two weeks without a response and you will be taken off of the list — see below for details on why). You may have only one “off week” (which may not be the last week of reading for obvious reasons) and still be kept on the list, but you must let me know in the comment section by saying something like, “This is my off week — I am catching up!” Please note that your offering to the discussion must be about the current weeks’ reading, not about past weeks. ***For all week’s discussions please refrain from posting ahead, even if you have read ahead, as to not spoil the book for others***
  2. As these Read-a-Longs grow, so do the amount of people who participate – yay, all the more fun!!! Also, all the more keeping track of who is still reading. As you know – if you have been absent from discussion for two weeks, you will be removed from the list. However, now, in order to get back on the list, you need to a.) Have missed no more than two weeks of discussion, b.) Let me know you would like to be on the list again, and c.) Consistently be part of the discussion for the next two weeks after requesting to be put back on the list. Am I trying to be mean? Absolutely not! I LOVE having you all read a long. It is, however, a lot of work to keep track of who’s still reading, and to keep taking names off and putting them back on the list. Most importantly though,  consistency is good for the group; we tend to get to know each other through discussions and rely on the conversation to keep us reading. I don’t do these read-a-longs to gain followers; I do them because the benefit of reading certain books with a group of dedicated people is often superior to reading them alone. But reading with undedicated people is worst of all, which is why I care less about numbers and more about dedication to the book and the discussions. (Bonus, at the end of the year I tally those who have done multiple read-a-longs and they get honorable mention on the Read-a-Longs page and a chance to enter for the 2012 Read-a-Long Prize — it’s going to be GOOD!.)
  3. If you are a blogger you may post a link to your blog if you are posting about each of the each week’s reading. If I, or other readers, have extra time we will gladly try to visit your blog; however, you must make sure to share your thoughts here on this blogand be part of the main conversation or your comment will not be counted.
  4. Comments from the previous week’s reading will be closing Thursday afternoon (before the next discussion takes place on Friday). If you would like to be part of the discussion, please remember to comment before then.
About these ads

39 thoughts on “On the Road Read-a-Long :: Sign Ups & Starting Post

  1. I’m looking forward to this! I’ve never read On the Road, don’t know if I’ll like it but want to see. Btw, the reading schedule looks like it’s still for Bleak House. Susan E

    • Argh, thanks Susan! I re-did it using the Bleak House schedule as a template and it didn’t save, apparently. I will fix that today.

  2. Yea! I’m glad you’re doing this one at a slow pace, too. Count me in. Good video–I would have never thought Jack Kerouac to be a mama’s boy.

  3. I’m excited! My Nook book is the original scroll version – I think it isn’t as heavily edited, and has the original names of Kerouac’s friends, which may confuse me as I’m reading along. Do you think I should get the other version for this read-a-long?

      • That was probably a good idea – otherwise, the conversation would be confusing (and frustrating). I didn’t know that he used his friends’ actual names in the original scroll – interesting!

  4. Hello, I’m Spyros from Athens, Greece. I’ve been following your posts for a while now. I’d like to read this book along with you. I haven’t read any Kerouac or other Beat auhtors before. Nook books are not available in Greece. I could purchase the Penguin edition from Kindle or iBooks store. Will that be all right?

      • Thanks for your reply. I got the book from iBooks. It was much cheaper. I’m starting reading right away. BTW, am I the only guy in this read-a-long?

      • One more question. For the first week I put a bookmark when I’m finished reading chapter 7 or when I reach chapter 7 (and I’ve read the first 6 chapters)?

        • You might be the only one in this particular read-a-long, but we have others who read other books with us. Not sure the final list of people for this one yet. But don’t worry – we’re super nice!

          First week you put a bookmark in when you reach chapter 7 (do not read it). :)

  5. Woop, I’m in! This is one of my favorite books, and I’m looking forward to savoring it over the next two months :)

  6. Enjoyed the video…thanks for linking. Like you, I’m not really expecting to like (enjoy?) this book, but feel like it’s something I should have read. An Unputdownables readalong is the best way to go about accomplishing that, I think. :)

    I can’t believe it’s here already though! I need to make myself a bookmark with the reading schedule and get busy. :) Looking forward to discussions.

  7. I wanna try this! I have a goal of reading 4 books a month and I’ve been looking for something else to do with my reading besides just finish books. I think I can get a copy before June, or close to it. For the discussions we just comment on the weekly post? I’ve never done something like this but I totally want to try it out!

    • Yes – so each Friday I will put up the post to start that week’s discussion. You have all week to come, comment, and reply to other people’s comments. We typically keep the conversation going all week. I close the comments on Thursday evening of the following week.

  8. Wallace, it happens I won’t be able to participate in the read a long. I have family coming to visit in June, so I will be devoting my time to them. Thank you.

  9. Pingback: May Reads | Books Speak Volumes

  10. I’m in on this one. I wasn’t sure. I got a copy from the library and read the first chapter. Now I’m looking forward to the rest o the adventure.

    Wallace – In case I haven’t already thanked you, or forget in the future, thanks very much for hosting these read-alongs. I really enjoyed A Moveable Feast and I’m pretty sure I’m going to like this one.

  11. Pingback: On the Road :: Week One « Unputdownables

  12. Pingback: On the Road :: Week Two « Unputdownables

  13. Pingback: On the Road :: Week Three « Unputdownables

  14. Pingback: On the Road :: Week Four « Unputdownables

  15. Pingback: On the Road :: Week Five « Unputdownables

  16. Pingback: On the Road :: Week Six | Unputdownables

  17. Pingback: On the Road :: Week Seven | Unputdownables

  18. Pingback: On the Road :: Final Review | Unputdownables

  19. Pingback: May Reads - Books Speak Volumes

Comments are closed.