About the 31 Books Project
Turning 30 is something of a milestone if for no other reason than it's a nice round number. I like the sound of the word "thirty." It's solid. It steps confidently toward maturity with a quick backward glance over its shoulder to not-so-distant young adulthood. Being 30 implies groundedness, assuredness, purpose. Not that any of those things is actually true or even necessary at age 30. Nonetheless, the implication resides in the statement, "I am thirty," whether one meets the conditions or not.
To me, the number signifies something momentous and nostalgic. Say what you will about 40 being the new 30 or 60 being the new 20 or whatever. 30 is the new 30 for me and it feels important to mark the passage of time in some way. As I considered how to best celebrate this decade shift, I started with simple goals: learn something and enjoy myself. I crave an indulgence; something I can do just for me that will make me happy. And I want to extend the experience over the course of the entire year. Make the transition into my thirties more of a victory lap than a sprint. But the combination of working full time, finishing a master's degree, parenting a one-year-old, and preparing to move next year means any project I want to carry out has to be location non-specific and not terribly time-intensive.
As a life-long voracious reader, a reading challenge fit the bill. It seemed the perfect way to conscientiously make progress through my thirty-first orbit around the sun while learning something new and indulging in my favorite hobby. Thus the 31 Books Project was born. The next task was book selection. While I could have randomly selected any combination of 31 books from my ever-growing To Be Read (TBR) list, a chronological structure appealed to me. Since the project is based on celebrating the past thirty years, it seemed only natural to choose a book published in each year of my life. However, that still left thousands of possibilities. In the next post, I'll detail how I plucked just 31 titles from such a multitude of options.
Keep turning the page,