Thursday, April 21, 2016

There's a Difference Between Quitting and Failing

post by Michelle Griep
I've been around the writerly block a few times. I've seen the fresh faces of newbie writers, clutching their virgin manuscript with a bounce in their step, approaching an editor or agent for the first time and expecting to sell that puppy right off the bat. I've also seen those same writers a few years later, after staggering around in Rejection Land, their carcasses littering the landscape with all the writerly joy sucked from the marrow of their bones.

What happened? Did they fail? Or did they quit? Is there a difference? You better believe it, Hoss. There's a huge difference.

Failure isn't a choice. It's a certainty. You will fail.

I don't know one author who hasn't run laps in the great hamster wheel of rejection. It's part of the writing game. It's what makes you grow as a writer. The real question is what will you do when you fail? How will you respond? Decide now, before you get slapped upside the head with a doozy of a "No thanks."

Change your perspective on failure from negative to positive. It's a chance to start over and try again.

Quitting is a decision. It's not inevitable. You do not have to quit. 

Quitting is what culls the real writers from the wannabes. If writing is in your blood, you won't quit. Oh, you might for a few months and think you've kicked the habit, but then like a meth addict, you'll be back again. And you'll certainly feel like quitting pretty much every day. But if you really do quit writing -- for good -- then perhaps you weren't a writer to begin with. Does that sound negative? It is.

Quitting is the opposite of failure. It's taking your ball and going home, unwilling to play any more.

The real difference between quitting and failure is commitment. How committed are you?


chappydebbie said...

I truly love your way of explaining make learning a joy.

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