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Friday, September 17, 2021

Failure As a Writer: Is It a Good or Bad Thing?

    The definition of failure according to the Oxford Languages Dictionary is lack of success, or the omission of expected or required action. Nothing about this definition implies that failure is a permanent condition, so to answer the question, is failure at something necessarily a bad thing? No, it’s not in my opinion, and in fact, each failure in life brings a person closer to success.

    My first book titled The Decline of Baseball in Inner-City Chicago wasn’t a complete failure, but it wasn’t an overwhelming success, either. It was a forty-page book riddled with typos, and because of naivety, I didn’t think to hire a freelance proofreader to clean it up. My book signing was a moderate success though, which consisted mostly of family and friends who attended the event. The point is that a writer must have the will to succeed because there is a lesson to be learned every time he or she overcomes an obstacle.

Bookshelf

    I struggled mightily for years to make a buck writing―I tried paid-per-click advertising, social media, and blogging to name a few things―and to be honest, my writing sucked because even though I had raw talent, I failed to properly edit my work and execute my marketing plan effectively. I didn’t begin to see any modicum of success until I awakened spiritually and reinvented myself as a writer, but that’s another topic for another day. Once I polished up my writing and outlined a clear and concise marketing plan tailor-made for me, I started to see the fruits of my labor.

    In order to be successful at anything, especially in writing, one has to put in the hours to hone his or her skills because there are no shortcuts to greatness. I once read that in order to be an expert at something, people have to be willing to practice over ten thousand hours in sweat equity to be a master at their craft. I still feel the need to keep refining my writing even after fifteen years and many late nights as I never stop learning new ways to present my stories to the viewing public.

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