What the hell am I doing?

Well, at the beginning of 2009, a guy/girl called Sam the copywriter began documenting a reading journey over at the Penguin blog. Basically, s/he aimed to read himself around the world, one book per country, within roughly 80 books.

Awesome idea, right? Unfortunately, within the year s/he'd only read six books (UK-France-Switzerland-Italy-Austria-Germany), and s/he'd chosen 18th or 19th century authors for four of them ("Great Expectations"!!! Honestly) and British exoticising novelists for the other two ("I Claudius" for Italy???), which is really kinda lame if you're serious about confronting world literature.
Granted, s/he was probably constrained into only reading books published by Penguin. And s/he made a cool map.

Anyhow, I've decided: I can do that too. I can do it better. I read lots of books in all genres and if I begin from Singapore, within a couple of stops I'm in Australasia already, new continent, woohoo, and next thing I know I'm in South America, which looks bloody impressive if I say so myself.
So I'm embarking on a similar journey. Rules are:

1. I can travel only between countries that share a border, or are either side of a body of water that needs crossing. (Lifted from Sam's original post.)
2. To qualify for being from that country, the book should ideally be set in that country and written by an author living in that country, although an either/or situation is acceptable when I just wanna read the book anyway.
3. The number 80 doesn't really matter so much. I just kinda wanna see if I can circumnavigate the globe with my reading habits.

Oh yeah, and there's another lady named Shelbi who's running a blog with the same name as mine (minus the exclamation points).  She rules: she's been marching through continent after continent since the beginning of 2010, never mind the fact that she's a full-time schoolteacher and she's pregnant with her second child.  Looks like she's going to finish all 80 books within the year, too.

My current plan is to go once via a "southern route" of the globe, then another time via a "northern route".  This means that I won't be covering North America and Europe till much later.  I'm sure they'll get on just fine without me for now.

Oh, and I'm a real writer, too.  Just thought you ought to know.  :)

UPDATE: As you can see, I've gone way past my original goal of finishing 80 books (I crossed that line in Eritrea) and circumnavigating the world (took me 2 years and 3 months to get to Malaysia). Now I'm just trying to read one book from/about every nation in the world, even unrecognised ones.

And there's now a Goodreads page with a similar intent. It's mainstream, folks!