We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master. ~ Ernest Hemingway
You can't fail, you can only quit- Richard Manning
Today you get two quotes for the price of one! Both of these really speak to some important facts we as writers need to remember.
1) You are NEVER going to be done learning and polishing your craft. Not gonna happen. Even writers with dozens of books are (or should be) continuing to grow and learn. Yes, there are ones who are just “calling in” their books. Their pubs know that the public will buy anything they produce, so they don’t care. But we’re ignoring them for now, because I know none of you intend to be “those types of writers”. Therefore, the learning process never ends. There’s no final. No thesis. No dissertation.
2) If you are never done learning, then you are always a work in progress. And you can’t fail. You can only fail if the process you are attempting actually has a termination point. Now, you can be ornery and create your own deadline, “if I’m not published in two years, I’m giving up!” But why would you want to do that? Is it some perverse sense of taunting the Universe? “I’ll show you! I’ll quit!” And who does that hurt? Not the Universe, it really doesn’t care. It only hurts the writer, if you love something enough to invest two years of sweat and headaches – why would you be willing to walk away? So the self-imposed deadline is a bit foolish. Either you’re a writer (aka someone who loves to write) or you’re not. If you can even think of a self-imposed deadline, you need to ask yourself why. It’s tough love, but I’ve seen many words of advice where people in this business (writers, editors, and agents) point out, if you can think of quitting, maybe this isn’t for you.
So, excluding the self-imposed deadline- we as writers have none. There is no rule that we must be published by a certain date. Or in a certain form. Our only rule is that we write.
No deadline, no termination = no failure. You can’t fail if you are still trying.
Jan 12--I just want to thank everyone who commented, or tried to- blogger is having issues and is blocking comments- including mine! But thank you all!