I just learned that "Water for Elephants", by Sara Gruen (which is quite a popular book) was a NaNoWriMo novel.
Also, that one of the Giller Prize nominees was a first novel, by a 26 year old woman (her mother came into the bookstore, very neat experience for me).
All of this to say, that if I want to be a writer, I have no excuse not to be one. I suddenly realized that it is a goal that is completely within my grasp. I could be a published, successful author by the time I'm 28 if I put the work in.
(28 is not a random number, it's actually been my mental goal for a while.)
(Coincidentally, the year I turn 28 is the year my mother will turn 50, and that is her magic number for being a published author too. I picked the number 28 before I realized this. Insert Twilight Zone music here.)
Now my goal is online. People can see it. People will know if I succeed or fail.
I'd better get to work.