For the next several days, I’m going to re-post some of the most popular Devotional Guy posts from 2017. To get things started, I thought I’d begin with this one inspired by a homeless woman and a poem she wrote.
The other day while Sweet T and I were sharing the love of Jesus down at the Center of Hope women’s shelter, we both had the opportunity to visit with a homeless family that we’d met there on a previous trip Downtown.
Pamela, the 71 year old family matriarch, her adult daughter Heather, and Pamela’s grandson Nathanael have been homeless several months now since they lost their apartment. After a number of life events happened causing them to get behind on the rent, they found themselves drowning from the sheer financial weight of trying to keep a roof over their head.
You’d never know from his big grin or joyful laugh that Nathanael suffers from cerebral palsy and spends most of his time confined to a wheelchair. Nathanael is filled with tremendous joy; a gift he undoubtedly gets from his mother and grandmother.
Writers write. If you’ve ever stared the blank page glowing off your laptop screen, I’m sure you’ve heard that before. Stacks of notebooks and legal pads testify to your commitment. Yes, Stephen King, writers write.
Writers plan and organize too. You set objectives. You aim for goals.
As 2017 draws to a close, what are your writing goals for next year? What strategies and tactics will you employ to reach your goals? Did you set SMART goals or are your objectives willy-nilly, feel gooders?
SMART Goals are:
S. – Specific
M. – Measurable
A. – Assignable
R. – Realistic
T. – Time based
Studies and experience show the more specific goals are the greater the odds of attaining them. Measuring progress and achievement is critical. Otherwise you don’t really know how you are coming along and when you need to celebrate. Assignable is a nice way of saying accountable. Writing is a lonely affair. If the story doesn’t get written, it’s on you. Realistic is a big, daunting word. If you’ve never ever written, don’t start out trying to write “War and Peace” or “A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”. Keep it simple. Make your goals attainable and reachable. Start by writing 100-200 words a day, six days a week. Take a day off. It’ll be okay. Build the volume of words you write until you are producing consistently. Find a level you can maintain. If you’ve never moved any iron, you wouldn’t go to your nearest gym and try to bench press 400 pounds of weight. That would be ridiculous. And painful. Finally, make your goals time-based. Yes. That means set a deadline. As with previous steps, be specific, make it measurable, be accountable, and be realistic. I know that a ton of “experts” tell you how you can write your Great American Novel in 30 days. Odds are against it. Start with something like this: I will complete the first draft of my first chapter of 2,500 words for my 80,000 word novel on January 31, 2018.
Anyways…writers write. So why are you just sitting there?