Right after Thanksgiving, my church writers’ group met for the last time in 2018. Our topic was “Writing Goals for 2019.” With the busyness of the holiday season and family obligations already upon us, only a few members came. But between the smaller group and a topic that naturally led to sharing, we enjoyed a little more in-depth discussion than we normally have.
The goals shared included starting a second novel and getting back to a writing project that had been set aside. Some “confessed” a lack of personal writing goals for 2019, at least so far. I loved how honest we all were. We shared doubts, fears, questions, and confusion, but most of all, we shared support without judgment.
Most interesting about the discussion to me, besides sharing ideas for setting goals and making plans, was sorting out why each of us writes (or sometimes don't write). We mentioned published authors we thought knew their why, even some with whys expressed in a single published book with evidently no more books to come. We talked about how Christian values and faith can be shown in writing without overt expression, and how God calls writers to all kinds of context to speak through the written word, in both fiction and nonfiction. We discussed people we know who are currently writing with what seems like a clear sense of why.
By the end of our meeting, I think some of us were ready to further consider our 2019 writing goals, yet perhaps in a new light because of writer friends who’d been willing to share openly and honestly about both their challenges and dreams. That was a good thing.
Proverbs 21:5 says, “The plans of the diligent lead to profit” (NIV). Perhaps even in this busy month we writers can spend some time considering what plans can help ensure we’ll profit in 2019 with our best writing yet. To do that, we might need to clarify—or at least confirm once more—our why and what profit we believe God intends for us and our readers to gain.
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