6 Year-Long Projects to Start in 2011

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year long projectsWith 2011 just around the corner, this is a great time to think about all the different things you could commit to doing for the next 365 days. We’re probably all working on our New Year’s resolutions but how about committing to something that will last the entire year?

There’s no limit to the kinds of things you could commit to doing on a daily basis throughout the year – and possibly beyond that. To get you started, here’s a list of 6 year long project ideas that you might want to try – from creative projects to good deeds. Get started with these guidelines, ideas and places where you can keep your project going for 365 days.

Write a Novel

If you’ve been itching to finish your novel, giving yourself a specific time frame may be the trick to finally getting it done. Set aside a certain amount of time per day and write a set number of pages. Getting organised could be a good way to motivate yourself – setting goals and achieving them can often lead to great momentum.

Louise Doughty, a writer and journalist put together a guide on The Daily Telegraph with tips and exercises for getting through the year. They’re no longer listed on the website, but are still available in the archives, and are conveniently listed on the blog, Learn to Write Fiction.

If you’re stuck for inspiration, check out our guide to finding ideas, and getting organised at the same time.

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While most writers probably prefer a distraction free word processor, you could check out Fast Pencil a website not only dedicated to helping you finish that novel, but also offers self publishing options if that’s the route you want to take.

year long projects

Take One Photo A Day

Possibly one of the most popular year-long projects, and most identified with the term ‘Project 365’, you can commit to taking one photo a day. There are all sorts of different ways you can share your photography, whether it’s on a website designed specifically for this purpose, or through a Flickr group, or even on your own personal blog.

year long project ideas

The key to keeping up with this project is not to expect to produce a masterpiece on a daily basis. Life will get in the way, and sometimes you’ll have to get creative to keep up. Be sure to take your camera with you everywhere, and on days when that isn’t possible, use your mobile phone.

If you need some inspiration check out the following links:

Take a Photo of Yourself

A twist on the Project 365 challenge is to take one photo of yourself a day. Take the photo in the same place everyday, in the same position, and see what changes you go through throughout the year. Or get creative with the project and come up with interesting self-portraits. If you’re not sure where to start, check out these suggestions from the Flickr forums.

year long project ideas

You can share the photos on Flickr, Facebook, your own blog, or on Dailybooth.

Write One Poem/Haiku a Day

Another creative project you can commit to for 365 days is writing one poem or haiku a day.

Post your poems on your blog. We’d recommend Tumblr for a project like this – keeping the method simple probably helps in keeping up with a year long commitment. Another option would be to use Twitter.

year long project ideas

If you’re not the creative kind, you could always reverse this and read one poem or short story a day, or even involve your children in the commitment.

Keep a Journal

Whether it’s to document your day as it happens, or just random thoughts and musings, keeping a journal has been said to make for a healthier lifestyle.

There are many reasons to keep a journal. You could write one down something you’re thankful for on a daily basis, or document your day using Bit.ly Bundles. Online services for keeping a journal are endless – whether public or private. For a few private options, check out these 5 simple sites. If you don’t want to sign up for yet another service, you could just settle on using Google Documents, or even Google Calendar.

year long projects

Alternatively, you could do a podcast a day. Check out Angela’s article on how to put together your own free podcast here, or even do it on the go using your mobile phone.

Do One Good Deed a Day

Most of the 365 day projects are personal or creative. For a different twist, how about committing to doing one random act of kindness a day. Ideally, this is the kind of project that you’d want to keep going beyond the one year limit as well.

If you’re pressed for ideas, check out this list to get you started.

What project are you going to commit to in 2011? Let us know in the comments.

Image credit: Shutterstock

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