It’s November! I can hardly believe it. This year has flown by. Soon it will be Thanksgiving, then Christmas, and then a new year will start.

November is an important month for writers. Yesterday (November 1st) was National Author’s Day. I celebrated by… writing nothing at all. (Ha, ha) It has been a very busy week, so I’m hoping that things calm down next week.

November is also National Novel Writing Month, also known as NaNoWritMo. In theory, writers can set aside the month of November to concentrate on writing a novel or finishing one they’ve already started. If your goal is a 50,000 word novel, then you commit to writing 1,667 words a day. For a 75,000 word novel, that’s 2,500 words a day. And so on.

The idea is to commit to a goal and keep at it for 30 days. Plus, you can be encouraged knowing that many of your fellow writers are holed up somewhere, pounding away at the keyboard, foregoing sleep, nutrition, and social interaction, too.

I won’t be participating in NaNoWriMo on that level this year, but I will continue working on my book and taking my online class. I have about 3 more weeks of class to go, so I should be done right before Thanksgiving. My next goal will be to have at least a rough draft done by the end of the year.

Much of writing is about setting goals and then doing everything in your power to reach them. Some writers aim for a certain amount of time that they write each day – 1 hour, 2 hours, 30 minutes, etc. Some aim for a word count – 1,000 words per day, for example. Whatever the goal, you must have a plan. You have to look at your day (or week) and see where you can fit writing in, make an appointment with yourself, and keep it.

I think that’s the general idea behind NaNoWriMo, too. Set the goal, make a plan, then try like crazy to get there.

This is actually a Biblical principle. In Philippians 3:13-14, Paul writes that he is “forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” He had set his goal, made his plan, and was working toward attaining that goal.

Then, in 2 Timothy 4:7, as he knew his time on earth was almost through, he said, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” Goal = accomplished.

Not all of us are called to write a novel, but each of us are called to do something. God has a purpose and a plan for every life. Do you know what you are called to do? It may be a lifetime calling or simply something you are called to do at this time in your life. Whatever it is, pray for guidance to set a goal, make a plan, and God will give you the strength to attain it.

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