Well, I didn't win. But I did win.
Read on to find out what craziness I'm talking about now.
So, I didn't win the 50,000 words, which means I couldn't claim the big reward prize, but that's okay. (I had wanted to reward myself with a new outfit, but honestly, I have plenty of clothes.)
I did reach over 30,000! My rewards were to order stickers at 10k. I posted a photo of them in a previous post. At 25K I ordered a new blank journal from Planner Perfect. I love the quality of Jenny's products. My plan is to use the journal as a brain dump and art book for 2022.
Why the rewards? Because it made this month's endeavor more special. I normally don't reward myself for doing what I'm supposed to be doing in the first place. Maybe I should, though....humm...
Truth of the matter is, that even though I did not reach my goal, this month's accomplishments had a big impact on my work, and my heart. You see, I had fallen into one of those miry pits of discouragement, which left me feeling depressed and wondering if I was on the wrong path. It's not hard to get off track, if we're not careful. If we don't pay attention. Most importantly, if we run ahead and stop listening to the One voice that we really need to hear.
The world is full of noise: do this, not that. This is the best way to blah, blah, blah. Don't do that, it no longer works.
All those worldly voices are playing guessing games, I think. But when I stop and get still, when I listen for God's still small voice, He speaks from eternity. He speaks from knowing. That's the voice I truly need to hear.
And, this month has helped me to do that. As I pushed past the doubts and moved in my gifts, even a few steps at a time because I still don't have the complete outline of this story... something happened.
My joy returned. The story came alive. I felt "right" again. And then His encouragements that came from His word, from friends who had no idea that they were speaking confirmation to me, and from time spent in His presence. "Don't give up your dreams," He said. "Don't let the enemy take what is yours, what I gave you to use in this world."
So, I won't give up.
Once I made that decision, the next series trilogy burst to life for me. New characters appeared. (They usually do when I'm in the third book). They're sharing their story and I'm trying to write it all down... while finishing this this one.
Finally, I gave a shrug and said, "So what if I don't get my 50k? I've been given so much more. And the story will get finished. More of what happens next will come to me when I least expect it. How it ends will be revealed soon. I have no doubts.
I'm so excited. Even better, I've shaken off the doubts and fears and feel so much lighter now. All because I looked up, instead of looking around.
Look up, friends, when in doubt. It truly is a life-changing tactic.
NaNoWriMo Goal: 50,00
Total Words Written: 33,546
(That's almost half of the book, folks!)
More information coming on Reborn of Ashes throughout December. Keep checking back here, or join my Castle Story World News Blasts to keep updated on new releases and special deals.
Jackie Castle is an author, artist and dreamer. She lives in Texas with her husband, two grown children and her dog, Banjo. She looks for the extraordinary in the ordinary in everything she experiences.