Books that Start in January

I’m a sucker for this nice linear, chronological sort of organization. What caught my attention is Living Oprah: My One-Year Experiment to Walk the Walk of the Queen of Talk by Robyn Okrant. Doing something (anything!) for one year is really A Thing. Everything from working (The One-Week Job Project: One Man, One Year, 52 Jobs, as well as Cop in the Hood: My Year Policing Baltimore’s Eastern District) to eating (Eat My Globe:One Year to Go Everywhere and Eat Everything) to spending time in prisons and other institutions (Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Woman’s Prison and Voluntary Madness: My Year Lost and Found in the Loony Bin).

Hobbies such as knitting and dog training can be mined for in-depth personal reporting (Sweater Quest: My Year of Knitting Dangerously and Dogged Pursuit: My Year of Competing Dusty, the World’s Least Likely Agility Dog).

There is a long tradition of both lengthy titles and documenting a significant year (see Woodstock, or the Cavalier. A Tale of the Year Sixteen Hundred and Fifty-one by Sir Walter Scott).

There’s something so seductive about making a plan that starts at a logical place and ends in finite time. What do you want to do in just one year? Maybe you can write a book about it (or start a profitable career blogging about it).

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