Every Writer Fails

At Writing & Other Things

Shelby Sullivan


Photo by Kate Stone Matheson on Unsplash

Recently I posted this overly ambitious article: 21 Fall Writing Prompts to Tackle This October 🎃. In it, I talked about how I was going to write a few autumn-related fiction short stories in the month of October.

I talked about how announcing this goal on Medium would hold me accountable, and how doing this challenge would help exercise my writing muscles for NaNoWriMo in November.

Well, not only did I NOT finish a single short story in October (though I did start writing one), but I also only got ⅓ of my goal written for NaNo.

I consider this a personal failure from a writer’s standpoint.

I like to blame it on the fact that I literally interviewed for a job, got the job, and then uprooted my life and moved myself and my dog across the country in the last few whirlwind weeks, but really, I just never showed up to the writing.

Sometimes the stars aren’t in position for this writing session…

I played The Sims 4 and Baldur’s Gate 3 and read a bunch of books. I went on nice long walks with my dog and finally started seeing my long-distance boyfriend in person for more than just a little while (now that we live closer). I had a GREAT time this October, will start my new job tomorrow on the 27th, and I don’t regret any of it.

But I did fail in my writer’s goal, and that’s okay.

Every writer fails…

There’s nothing wrong with, well, getting it wrong. I didn’t meet the standards I set out for myself. I did disappoint myself in my ability to take on a challenge and try to complete it, and I didn’t really have much fiction to show for it this autumn like I’d wanted.

After spending the last 4 years freelancing and blogging, I really wanted to start churning out fiction stories— maybe even get published in a literary magazine again. But I didn’t put in the effort alongside all these life changes, and it makes me feel frustrated.

  • Am I really taking this whole writing thing seriously?
  • Is a paycheck more important to me than my craft?



Shelby Sullivan

6 years as a professional writer, editor, blogger, and designer. Learn to make book covers and contact me at linktr.ee/sulliwrites !