Learning from Our Failures

It really bites to fail at something, doesn’t it! After all of the hours we’ve toiled at achieving a goal only to watch it come rocketing down in a fiery blaze of fuming horror with blood spewing everwhere…..well that’s a bit too dramatic.

This week I failed at achieving my goal with the Kickstarter Project. If you don’t know what Kickstarter is it’s a vehicle used to raise funds for a creative project. In my case, it was publishing Jupiter Chronicles. Don’t get me wrong, this book will see the light of day but it will have to be on a tighter penny. As far as the failure to reach my goal, let me be totally transparent here and say that it was depressing.

All I thought of was chocolate and hamburgers and I didn’t get either. I did get ribs though. They were really good.

Seriously, I am being a little dramatic but I did learn a few things:

Don’t take it personal.
Trust me, it’s not worth it. All it brings is a lower immune system and allergies flaring up. That’s never a good thing. After all, this is just a thing. Things can be fixed and replaced. Time with family cannot be made up. Refocus on the things that are lasting. You are not your failures.

Take an inventory of what you could have done differently.
I should have planned ahead and had the campaign mapped out. Some of the interviews I requested and eventually received didn’t happen until the campaign was already in progress. Sometimes a story takes time to gain traction. Map out your project before you let the cows out of the gate!

Don’t dwell on it!
Again, it’s not worth it. Focus on the things that really matter like family and friends. After reality sank in that I wasn’t going to make my goal I went downstairs and chased my daughter around the living room. Felt mighty good.

Here’s a list of folks who have failed at something and went on to succeed:

Theodore Seuss Geisel – rejected 27 times by publishers.
Stephen King – received 30 rejections for Carrie.
Jack London – received 600 rejections. How’s that for tenacity!
Steven Spielberg – was rejected by US C School of Film and dropped out at a subsequent school. He returned in 2002 to finally get is B.A.
J.K. Rowling – before Harry Potter, she was penniless, divorced and depressed. She was also on welfare.

The list goes on.

Learn to redirect, re-plan and re-ignite your efforts down a different path while attempting to reach the same destination. You don’t have to get there the same way. Go back and take a look at how to get to the same place by taking a different road.

You’re going to suffer a few bumps and bruises along the way. Stay strong.

Chat soon,
Leonardo Ramirez is an author of Science Fiction and Fantasy books for all ages. For more info, please visit http://leonardoverse.com and sign up for the blog.

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  • I admire your forthrightness and tenacity. You will find success with The Jupiter Chronicles. It just didn’t work like you planned this time. (That’s a common phrase in my creative efforts, “It didn’t work like I planned … this time.”)
    So much of what we do in life is in response to events. We’ve heard the “be proactive, not reactive” advice, and it is good, but not always applicable. I liken it to writing advice. The truth is “writing is re-writing.” If you knew the re-write first, wouldn’t you have done that first? Of course. But it took getting the words on the page for you to see that they needed to be in a different order, and these other words added to make the vision clear. That, right there, is life. Acting is re-acting. Or … life is re-life-ing … yeah. (maybe that phrase needs a rewrite)