I have to have read 1000 books by the time I turn 30. That is to say, on 8 April 2019, I will have read one thousand (ONE THOUSAND!) significant pieces of literature in my lifetime. At almost 26, my time is running out.

So why the sh*t would I want to do that?

The one thing I’ve learned in my 20s is the importance of making lists. Shopping lists, check lists, wish lists, what-can-you-do lists. Most of these are incomplete or just plain ignored as real life gets in the way –  but the intention is there. It’s calming the persistant niggle that says ‘you ought to be doing something important’ — that feeling that used to be reserved for writing letters and actually posting them in the sodding letterbox even though God knows I never have a stamp for the life of me and oh it’s so inconvenient on the way to work and my handwriting is terrible, cheers Miss!

I digress.

The latest plonker of a list was of things I wanted to accomplish before the age of 30. Sure, I want to go on a roadtrip and learn how to drive (come on already!), visit Australia, go mad in a roller disco and do a maze-a-thon, but I thought I had ages to go. Now I know I’m wrong.

Not just about the time thing, but I have a distinct lack of a silver spoon hanging out of my mouth, leaving next to no funds to traipse to the other end of the Earth for the next four years, to indulge myself in igloo-style hotels or Orient Express-style trips. I’m a Londoner, after all. We can’t stray far on our budgets.

What I can do is start all of my travelling and more in books while I work on physically getting myself to a variety of tropical locations – and catch up on all of the brilliant books I have been missing while on the way.

Until I get my hands on all of the books in my boxes, I won’t know exactly how far along the thousand mark I have gotten, but I have already established some ground rules:

1- Baby books don’t count, even if you pick them up years later and read them again, that’s still zilch and, not even Goodnight Moon even if it is an epic classic bedtime story because we have to be serious and have no fillers here

2- I will review every single book I have read this year (until now and in future months).

3- Comic books are only allowed as part of a series, and have to be categorised as one so as not to bulk up the list unfairly.

4- Series like Game of Thrones and Harry Potter count as individual books, despite being the same overall characters.

5- The order of books read is irrelevant – I will read whatever I get my hands on first. I will construct my list based on recommendations, classics and best sellers from the beginning of the written word until now. Recommendations are always welcome in the comments section!

My calculations are – 500 average read books, with two to three books average read a week is 104 read a year which makes it anywhere between 932 and 1124 books. In the coming weeks, I will publish the list of books that I have read in previous years so that the tally can be calculated more effectively. Let’s see what happens, hey!

Featured image: Creative commons courtesy of Texas State Library

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