Falling vs Failing

First, let me say, I can't overstate how strongly I feel about this subject. It's just another one of those things they don't teach you in school. You know, one of those important things to help you deal with life -- to help you become successful. Nope, algebra, the theory of general relativity and every important date before, during, and after WWII are more important. My gripes with today's "education" system aside, what I am about to write is important for anyone who wants to make a success of themselves, whether it be as an author, a parent or anything.

Recently, a writer on one of the closed Facebook groups I follow mentioned how they couldn't get their rights back from a publisher who was not doing their work justice. It went a little something like this:

Author's Post

"To let everyone know, I failed. Epically.

I mentioned a couple months ago that [a certain publishing company] was refusing to give my rights back to the books they don't care about or market, but had dropped to $.99, and the only thing I could think to do was stop promotion on ALL of my books.

I lasted 6 weeks. Now they've got the first [book series] book set to free, so I give up. It almost physically hurts not to market these books, when I love them so much. So instead of trying to out-stubborn [a certain publishing company], I'm going to just concentrate on new worlds and new characters, and figure out what to do with [book series] another day.

Now...where's the best place to market a free book that doesn't cost an arm and a leg? I'm about to do something stupid and spend this month's marketing budget on premade covers for a series I haven't written yet.

(Totally not a pity party post, I love these books and it just feels wrong not to market them at all.)"

My Reply

"You didn't fail. You fell. Falling is a natural step on the road to success. If you don't fall there's a problem. Most importantly, you've picked yourself up and dusted yourself down. Those are the next steps. What you've done doesn't sound like giving up to me. Fair play. Now, time to kick ass. Check out the SPF podcast about twitter for info on one way to market your book on a budget."

Moral of the Story

Life is a long series of falls. You can have all the money in the world or you can have none. No matter who, or what you are, one thing in life is certain: You will fall.

Falling isn't a bad thing. It isn't even important. But, what you do after you fall IS. There are two options. 

1) Do nothing. This is failing. 

2) Get up and try again. This is living.

We have been conditioned to believe that falling is a bad thing; that falling is the same as failing. Hell, the two are almost spelled identically.

Falling is necessary. Without it we do not grow in strength, in intelligence, and in character. Without falling we do not learn to adapt.

You can fall any damn way you want, a fall is a fall. Falling forward is great, but if you fall back, so what! Get up and carry on, and remember each fall is an investment in you, your future and your success.