Monday, February 20, 2017

Failure Will Not Be Tolerated

Declan is on vacation for the next two weeks, whether he likes it or not. He has books to write and I can't have him stroking out before book 4 of the Love At First Bite Series is completed. I really want to know how that ends. So, my killer chiweenie Saedie (aka Satan) is guarding the office door to keep him out. (Can't trust G. K. Chesterton aka Satan's minion for this job, he likes everyone.)

Over the next two weeks there will be guest bloggers filling in for Declan, beginning with me.

It's been awhile since I've posted here so I should probably reintroduce myself. I am Dawn Witzke, I design all of Declan's book covers and torture him into letting me read his books before they come out. 

Last week, Declan mentioned failure in his post. Okay, he's mentioned it in other posts as well. And I think a few of his haters have mentioned it as well. So I thought I'd address failure in this blog.

I don't accept failure. Suck it up Sweetheart, Failure will not be tolerated.

From anyone.


The thing about failure is that it is subjective. It's all in how you set up your expectations and how you look at success. It is not an indicator of who you are or your level of talent or skill.

Failure is an indicator that you did not meet the expectations you set for yourself. It does not mean that you can never meet those expectations, only that you haven't...yet. You'll get there eventually, just keep going.

For example, I have my first book coming out in March. Now, if I expect that everyone is going to love it and that I'm going to have sales to the tune of those earned by JK Rowling or Stephanie Meyer, well I'm going to fail. My expectations are way above what reality will support.

I could wallow in the injustice over people not seeing how great of an author I am. (I am really, buy my book) Or I could reassess my expectations to something that are reasonable. Like say selling a few copies to friends and family because I nagged them into it. Anything beyond that is icing on the cake.

Or, I could also look at the fact that I have written a book, which is more than millions of other people have done. Of course, next to Declan's 15 or so books he's published in the same number of years, my lowly one looks like a failure. But, for me, it's a success. I have my first book published. I can check that off and move on to my next goal.


When things don't go the way you expect, you have to pick yourself up, dust yourself, down that margarita and take another run at it. (Maybe have two margaritas...they are yummy) Yup, it gets tiring. Yup, it gets frustrating. Yup, after ten years of writing, even I want to give up.

There is a saying that life is like a car with a huge windshield and iddy bitty mirror. The reason is that you should spend more time looking forward than looking back. It makes sense.

But, sometimes you just need to stop once in a while and look back at all of your successes.

I have a stack of magazines in a plastic tote that includes almost every article I've ever had in print. It's a nice visual of the success I've had as a writer. I also used to make a list of accomplishments, both big and small so that I could "see" how far I've come since starting. When I look back at what I've done rather than focusing on where I'm going (aka what I haven't done yet), I'm always amazed and a little impressed. This keeps me moving forward rather than giving up.


First, never ever ever compare yourself to someone else (like I did earlier) it sets you up for disappointment. You can never follow another's path, you have to forge your own. If you need a visual, make one, then post it so that you can see your progress. If you're moving toward your goal, even if it's very slowly, you are succeeding.

Second, create small goals that are easily accomplished. "Whoohoo. I made a new contact on
Twitter.", "Whoohoo. I got a new review", "Whoohoo. I got dressed like a normal person." They might not seem like much, but like pennies they add up.

Third, reassess your goals on a regular basis. Adjust them accordingly. Goals are not set in stone. If you don't meet the goal, change it or break it down into smaller goals. Make the goal fit work for you.


No one Masters anything overnight. It takes years of hard work and dedication. Writing is no different. Some people get lucky and find fame and riches early on, but that is not the norm. The norm is busting your rump trying to get your book noticed in a pile of several million other books.
Success doesn't come with sitting around waiting for something to happen. It takes practice. It takes finding new ways to get where you want to go. It takes having faith that you will get there...eventually.


Everyone comes across that one jerk. You know the one. They have to tear other people down because they are unhappy with their own successes. 

Well, this is what I have to say to them...Kiss my bright white ass.

Don't let them destroy your faith in yourself. Don't let them derail your progress. Drive around those losers, focus on your goals and leave them in the dust.

Your successes are yours and they can never be taken from you.


Oh, sorry, got carried away there. No, I'm not your father. I'm not even your mother...unless you're name is Andrew and happen to look like a much taller male version of me...then maybe I am.
Now, go out and be the success I know you are. LET SUCCESS RUN THROUGH YOU Yes you. The one that just finished reading the post. I've got something for you. A free copy of Bad Date by Declan Finn. Just sign up for his email list to get it. You'll also get 2-3 emails a month from Declan with added extras that no one else gets, plus advance notice of sales and appearances. It's an easy success...go for it.

And check out his books on Amazon.



  1. Enjoy the time off Declan and come back refreshed and recharged!!!

    Excellent post, Dawn. Especially for writers just getting underway.

    1. Thanks Richard. I think even some of us who have been writing for a while need the reminder.

  2. Nice, Dawn. Some of us probably could use your perspective.

  3. Thanks for the reminder! I need to read this post every week (sometimes every day!)


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