The Background:
Three years ago, on January 1, 2010, I wrote a 101 in 1001 post on my blog. A recent transplant to San Francisco, I was depressed, lonely, and worried that my writing was an empty dream. I’ve always failed at New Year’s Resolutions, but the Day Zero Project appealed to me. The idea is to complete 101 tasks in 1001 days – kind of like a short-term bucket list. The challenge ended for me in September of this year and, to be completely honest, I hadn’t peeked at my list in some months. In fact, many of my goals had changed so much that some tasks on my list were no longer appealing or applicable to my life. Others (like the one where I challenged myself to talk to my dad before it was too late) were somewhat bittersweet seeing as how my dad passed away in 2011 before I’d made good on that task.

But, at the end of the day, I finished 37 of my tasks and half-started another 15. If you’re a math person, that means I didn’t even make it through half my list. Still, as I read through those goals, I felt this great sense of accomplishment for what I’ve achieved. Do you know what a few of my biggest tasks were?

  • Get an agent.
  • Write a second book.
  • Write a third book.
  • Get a book published.

When I wrote those goals down, those items seemed so lofty and unattainable, but I decided to put them down in writing anyway, declaring my intention to the world and – more importantly – to myself. And now, every single one of those tasks is checked off my list. How awesome is that? As for those things I didn’t accomplish, I’m okay with that, too. A person changes in 1001 days, and that’s exactly what happened. My desires changed, and in some ways, I outgrew my bucket list.

Still, putting my goals in writing worked out for me so well, I’ve decided to do another 101 in 1001 challenge.

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The Mission:
Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria:
Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on my part).

Why 1001 Days? 
Many people have created lists in the past – frequently simple goals such as New Year’s resolutions. The key to beating procrastination is to set a deadline that is realistic. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year, because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks, which is better for organizing and timing some tasks such as overseas trips or outdoor activities.

Start Date: Tuesday, January 1, 2013
Deadline: September 29, 2015

My List over at Day Zero Project.


UPDATED 1/3/14

My 101 in 1001 List


1. Write a fourth book
2. Write a fifth book
3. Write a sixth book
4. Organize a writer’s retreat
5. Teach a writer’s workshop or class
6. Get on a bestseller’s list
7. Do a Spalding Alumni trip
8. Plan an East Coast book tour
9. Make it into Amazon’s Top 100 books
10. Memorize a favorite poem
11. Finish NaNoWriMo
12. Read 150 books
13. Beta read for ten people (3/10)
14. Write something that scares me
15. Apply for a grant
16. Read 10 nonfiction books
17. Ask friends to suggest 10 books to read and read them all
18. Submit to crit group regularly (no longer N/A with crit grp ending)
19. Plan a local author event
20. Go to the RT Conference


21. Learn to make macarons
22. Bake whoopie pies for Kari
23. Cook an Indian meal from scratch
24. Try ten restaurants I’ve never been to before (3/10; Jannah; La Mediterranee; Cafe Algiers)
25. Have drinks at the Top of the Mark
26. Do an Off the Grid dinner night
27. Do a Gift Card Relay Dinner with Friends – Appetizers/Dinner/Dessert at 3 different restaurants
28. Try the Lemon cookie ice cream at Three Twins Ice Cream
29. Eat an exotic donut at Dynamo Donuts
30. Have a girl’s night at The Dessert Bar
31. Have dinner at the Toast Eatery
32. Learn how to cook a new dish each month

Travel/Playing Tourist

33. Travel to Ireland for a writer’s retreat
34. Ride in a cable car
35. Go to Alcatraz
36. Visit Oregon, Maine, or North Carolina
37. Ride in a hot air balloon
38.  See the Northern lights
39. See a Shakespeare in the Presidio show
40. Go to a professional football game
41. Go to a Giants game
42. Take a road trip
43. See the Grand Canyon
44. Visit Yosemite National Park
45. Go to Comic Con
46. See the parrots on Telegraph Hill
47. Slide down the Seward Street Slide
48. Drive down one of the steepest streets in town – either 22nd between Vicksburg and Church (Noe Valley) or Filbert between Leavenworth and Hyde (Russian Hill). Both have a 31.5% grade
49. Visit Grace Cathedral’s labyrinth
50. Go to a sing-a-long at the Castro Theatre with friends
51. Do a crit group movie night – Austenland with Kari
52. See the Chinese New Year Parade in Chinatown
53. Go bowling at the Presidio Bowl
54. Do a weekend trip to Sonoma
55. Travel to Washington DC to see the sites in IF I LIE


56. Pay off my car
57. Clean out my closet and dresser
58. Clean house at least once a week
59. Draft a living will
60. Organize filing cabinet
61. Spray paint my fan to make it look vintage
62. Get curtains for the living room
63. Get a new bed skirt
64. Make a peek-a-boo lamp shade
65. Purge belongings and do a Goodwill trip


66. Start Weight Watchers
67. Take vitamins every day
68. Get to my goal weight
69. Work out 3x a week
70. Get laser eye surgery
71. Drink 8 glasses of fluids every day for at least one month (to get into habit)
72. Be asthma-free for six months

Personal Growth/For the Fun of It

73. Do a 30 day photo challenge (Pinterest)
74. Go to a concert
75. Decorate dishes with Sharpies
76. Decorate a Christmas tree
77. Carve a pumpkin
78. Get a tattoo
79. Fall in love
80. Let an injustice go
81. Learn to play the “Cups” song
82. Grow my hair out
83. Sing karaoke at a bar
84. Learn to knit
85. Invite friends for a slumber party
86. Learn French
87. Interview someone for the Veterans History Project
88. Read the entire Bible
89. Learn to play a song on my guitar
90. Take a free online class
91. Send flowers anonymously to a friend in need
92. Take a photography class
93. Go to a midnight showing of the Rocky Horror Picture Show
94. Make 5 crafty things

Pay it Forward
95. Buy coffee or a meal for a stranger 5x
96. Do 3 random acts of kindness
97. Release 5 books into the wild with inspirational messages inside
98. Pay it forward on the Bay Bridge
99. Send books to soldiers or veterans
100. Start a new 101 in 1001 list when this one is completed

101. Plus one secret goal. Nope, I’m not telling.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]