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The Sunday Salon: The Day Zero Project

The Sunday Salon.com A couple Sunday Salons ago, I wrote about reading and doing, and I mentioned starting my own Day Zero Project. It took me a couple of weeks, but I finally got my list put together and posted at the blog I started to record how my project is going, called Stepping Off the Page. I’m going to be posting my updates for the project there because I didn’t think this blog was a good place for that.

For those not familiar, the idea of a Day Zero Project is to come up with 101 goals to complete in 1,001 days. Starting today, I have until December 23, 2013 to try and make it through my list, which is divide into a number of categories: Cooking and Eating, Lifestyle, Arts and Culture, Organization, Travel, Randoms, and, of course, Reading. I’ve actually got 13 reading goals for the next 1,001 days, some more complicated than others:

  1. Read “A Great Russian Novel.”
  2. Read (or re-read) all of Tracy Kidder’s books. (0/8)
  3. Re-read the Harry Potter series. (0/7)
  4. Do an entire Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-Thon (not all 24 hours, just not actually do anything else during that time).
  5. Read a “Book on Books” and 5 of the books mentioned in it. (0/6)
  6. Read 5 books of journalism theory. (0/5)
  7. Read a book by an author who’s last name starts with Q.
  8. Read a book by an author who’s last name starts with X.Host a reading challenge/project.
  9. Read 33 graphic novels. (0/33)
  10. Find a good smart phone app for organizing my bookshelves and TBR list.
  11. Categorize my nonfiction reviews by the Dewey Decimal System.
  12. Learn how to use OverDrive to check out ebooks and audiobooks from the library.
  13. Write a Bucket List of 50 books to read before I die.

I’m already reading War and Peace for #1, and am signed up for the April Read-a-Thon for #4. Reading 33 graphic novels (#9) might seem arbitrary, but it comes out to one per month through the course of the project. I’m already planning on reading Essex County by Jeff Lemire (thanks to Lu’s lovely review) as well as The Complete Maus by Art Spiegelman and the rest of Bill Willingham’s Fables series.

And I cannot wait to get started with #13, since there are so many great books to add to a reading Bucket List.

I’m really looking forward to this project, of having a motivation, arbitrary as it might be, to step out of my shell and take on some of the things I’ve been meaning to do but always find excuses not to. You can read my full 101 in 1,001 list over on my other blog, and find me over there a bit over the next 2.71-ish years trying to complete my list!

What sorts of things would be on your Day Zero list? Do you have a reading bucket list? Any recommendations for books to fulfill some of my goals?

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Trisha March 27, 2011, 8:45 am

    Ever since I saw this at Amanda’s blog, I’ve been meaning to do it. Good for you for getting on top of this and good luck with your goals.

    • Kim March 27, 2011, 10:57 am

      Trisha: We’ll see how it goes. I have a tendency to be enthused about personal projects when I start then forget about them. This blog, and a blanket I made for my mom a couple of years ago are huge, notable exceptions. I’m hoping public accountability, even if it’s only to The Internet, will keep me motivated 🙂

  • Carina (Reading Through Life) March 27, 2011, 8:56 am

    I’m doing this, too! I’m almost halfway through my time period, actually, and still rather far behind. You can check out my list here.

    • Kim March 27, 2011, 10:58 am

      Carina: That’s awesome! I wish there was a way on the Day Zero site to “friend” people you know to follow their lists more easily. I should put my list up there too, but I’m feeling sort of lazy after blogging this morning. Soon, I hope.

  • Lindsay March 27, 2011, 10:06 am

    I am so inspired by what you are doing – I am definitely following to see how you do with your goals (which are all amazing by the way!) Congratulations on challenging yourself…and best of luck with your ambitions.

    • Kim March 27, 2011, 11:00 am

      Thanks, Lindsay! When I look at the whole goal list together, it strikes me as really eclectic, but I think I like that. But 2.71-ish years isn’t that long, so I think lots of the goals have to be small ones, too.

  • Helen Murdoch March 27, 2011, 10:53 am

    What a great idea, but I would be afraid of not completing it. I do have one questions: your start date is 3/27/10 and your end date is December 2010. We’re already in 2011… Just a goof up? I am right with you since I have been calling April “August” for the last couple of weeks.

    • Kim March 27, 2011, 11:01 am

      Helen: Yes, just a goof up. It should be Mach 2011. I just went back and fixed it in all the places I messed up. I’m all over the place with dates, it seems. Now I’m worried I dated all the checks I wrote this morning incorrectly!

  • Vasilly March 27, 2011, 11:24 am

    I just saw another blogger talk about the same project. I started my own Day Zero project years ago but totally forgot about it. I think it’s time to start a new list! 🙂 Good luck on your project. If you need recommendations for graphic novels, I’m happy to help.

    • Kim March 28, 2011, 4:33 pm

      Vasilly: Yes, start a new list! And I will be e-mailing you for some graphic novel recommendations once I go through the ones I have on my list already. I can’t wait to find some new good ones. I’ve been neglecting my graphic novel reading lately.

  • Florinda March 27, 2011, 2:07 pm

    I’m just overwhelmed by the idea of starting projects like this, so I don’t – and the older I get, the less appealing I find the idea of a “bucket list” for anything. (There’s probably something significant about that, but I’m not sure I want to pick it apart that much…) I think that I spent most of my younger adulthood pretty focused, so I rather like meandering a little more in my middle years.

    Good luck with your project – and if you do accomplish #10, please share – I’d be very interested in an app like that myself!

    • Kim March 28, 2011, 4:35 pm

      Florinda: You know what got my bogged down the most? Coming up with a blog name for my Day Zero blog, which is just ridiculous since the blog isn’t the point at all. Its mostly just a place for me to write down that I did things so I can remember them better.

      Being in young adulthood, I feel sort of meandering right now. Since I finished grad school, I’ve been not sure about what to do, and so I think this project will be helpful for me.

  • Erin March 27, 2011, 6:28 pm

    I love this idea, but my gosh, it intimidates me! The more “to-do” type things I create for myself, the more stressed out I get (hence why reading challenges don’t work for me!). Kudos to you for going through with it! I’m going over to subscribe to Stepping Off the Page right now 🙂

    • Kim March 28, 2011, 4:36 pm

      Erin: It is a little stressful, and I hate reading challenges, so I’m not sure why I think this is going to work 🙂 I’m hoping that since these are things I really want to do, but just keep making excuses not to do, it will be more fun than stressful.

  • bermudaonion (Kathy) March 27, 2011, 7:30 pm

    I have a feeling you’ll accomplish all of your goals!

    • Kim March 28, 2011, 4:36 pm

      Thanks Kathy, I hope so!

  • Ash March 27, 2011, 8:35 pm

    I considered putting complete a 24-hour-readathon on my list as well but wasn’t sure how to go about it. I like your idea of just focusing only on the readathon. I’m going to check out your new blog now!

    • Kim March 28, 2011, 4:37 pm

      Ash: That’s the only way I could think to add it. I’ve participated in Read-a-thons before, but I always have something come up in the middle. I’ve never specifically dedicated the day for it, which is what I wanted. We’ll see how it goes — right now, it’s my big plan for April.

  • Sheila (Bookjourney) March 27, 2011, 8:42 pm

    Nice list! What an awesome idea! Go Kim!

    • Kim March 28, 2011, 4:37 pm

      Thanks Sheila 🙂

  • Lu March 28, 2011, 12:30 pm

    Thank you for the link!I really need to get working on my Day Zero project list, because I really want to do it. Good luck with all of your goals, Kim 🙂

    • Kim March 28, 2011, 4:38 pm

      Good luck to you too, Lu! I wish there was a better way to connect with people on the Day Zero website — it’s hard to keep track of friends there.

  • Kailana March 28, 2011, 3:58 pm

    The graphic novels you have planned are all excellent. I am considering rereading the Fables series for OUaT, but I should probably discover new books instead. 🙂 I just recently read Essex County, which was very good, and read Maus back in 2009 and thought it was fantastic.

    • Kim March 28, 2011, 4:38 pm

      Kailana: Awesome, I’m glad to hear that. I’ve read lots of good things about all of them, so I’m optimistic. I got distracted from Fables last year and need to get caught up with the series.

  • J.C. Montgomery March 29, 2011, 2:24 am

    I haven’t heard about this until now. Thank you for the links so I can go check it out.

    As for your smartphone, I have a Droid Incredible and use Book Catalogue. I like the fact you can scan or type in the ISBN, or add it manually. You can also make multiple “shelves”. I have several such as Read, TBR, Wish List.

    The file is saved to the SD card as a .CSV file so you can copy it from the card to a PC and open it with Excel or OfficeOrg. There may be something more sophisticated, but this works for me.

    Here is a link that might help:


    • Kim March 31, 2011, 7:39 pm

      Thanks a lot, J.C.! That sounds exactly like what I’m looking for, and I am planning to get a phone with the Android system which means it should work. I’ll have to look into it more when I get my new phone this summer.