Goins, Writer

On Writing, Ideas, and Making a Difference

Why Most Aspiring Writers Are Doomed to Fail

Most people who say they want to be a writer will sadly, ultimately fail. Ouch, right?

Why Most Aspiring Writers Are Doomed to Fail

I don’t say this to discourage you. On the contrary, I’m warning you. It’s just the truth. Most writers are doomed to fail, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

I’ll tell you why in just a minute. But first, let me explain what I mean by failure.

True Failure for Writers

Failure has nothing to do with how many books you sell or how much money you make. Like a teddy bear you win at an arcade, those are just reminders of the fun you had playing the game.

For writers, failure is never creating anything meaningful — and as a result, not making a difference with their words.

Why is it that so many people can’t seem to finish their book? Why are the books they do finish usually uninspiring and overlooked? In a word, I think the problem is foundation. More specifically, a lack of  a foundation.

Writing is hard. A clever sentence, a funny joke? Those are easy enough. But to actually finish a book filled with life-changing perspective, a powerful story? Most writers will never do it.

But not you. You’re different, or at least you could be. You’re serious about being a writer, even if you’ve never told another soul. I respect that, and I want to help. So here’s my advice after authoring four books, getting published, even hitting a few bestsellers lists.

To reach the finish line, you’ll need two things — and don’t worry, both of them are totally free.

#1: Connect with your calling.

The first thing you need to do is to connect with your calling. You might think, “Jeff, I know what my calling is. I want to be a writer.”

But writing is not your calling. Sorry, it’s not mine, either.

This sounds surprising, but in fact, I don’t think writing is anybody’s calling. You see, writing is a means to an end. Just like talking. No one ever says their calling is to talk, no matter how chatty they are. 🙂 Your calling is about whom you’re meant to serve. What you’ll stand against. And more importantly, what you’ll stand for.

Once you understand your calling, your writing will gain power as you write from a place of purpose. You’ll start to resonate with the people who have been waiting for what you have to say. And your writing will begin to change things.

#2: Become a gritty writer.

The second thing you’ll need is grit — perseverance. You need to not quit, which is the biggest obstacle standing in the way of any aspiring pro. Most people just quit too soon.

What separates the winners from the losers? In a word: grit. And this is nothing special reserved for the elite writers of the world. Anyone can have grit, even you.

The good news is grit comes easily to people who write with conviction.

Writer’s block becomes bearable when you know what needs to be said. Self-doubt weakens because the process isn’t about you anymore. It’s about the people you’re called to serve. And the dozens of excuses that keep you from your desk are revealed for what they are — insignificant — when your reason for writing is clear.

I don’t want to mislead you. Writing is hard. But history is brimming with stories of men and women who accomplished incredible things. Why? Because incredible things are worth accomplishing, even though they’re hard. And what gets you through those obstacles is the willingness to keep going.

The difference between success and failure

Discovering your calling is the foundation to great writing. It’s hard, soul-searching work, which is why most writers never do it — and as a result, never succeed.

You’re welcome to take that free advice and set off in pursuit of your calling. I wish you the best. Or, you can let me guide you through the entire process in my online, video-based course The Art of Work.

In this course, I’ll walk you through a 7-step approach with practical exercises to help you zero in on your unique calling.

I’m running a big sale right now where you can get lifetime access to the entire course for only one payment of $197—a $30 discount.

And remember when I said success for a writer isn’t about money, but rather about serving people with your unique perspective? I really believe that. So in addition to the discount, I’m going to give you 10 free paperback copies of The Art of Work book. I’m hoping you’ll give them to your friends and family so more people can be helped by this message.

If you’re ready to stop spinning your wheels and unlock your power as a writer, enroll in the course.

Whether the course is right for you or not, I encourage you to be diligent in uncovering your calling. This is the difference between success and failure for most aspiring writers.

Sign up for The Art of Work Course by July 6th to receive $30 off and 10 copies of The Art of Work.

How can you best connect your writing with your calling? Share in the comments

About Jeff Goins

I write books and help writers get their work out into the world. I am the best-selling author of four books, including The Art of Work. Each week, I send out a newsletter with free tips on writing and creativity.

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  • Calling is such a tough thing to nail down. There are certain things I think we’re all called to do – but we’ve each got different skills and talents with which to do them. Without a message that we think the world needs to hear, we’ll be unfulfilled as writers even if we felt “called” to write. Calling is the WHY behind our words.

    I like this perspective, Jeff. Thanks for the inspiration.

  • Kody Evangelist Dibble

    Thanks Jeff!! Writing is such a challenge, I feel like navigating through the huge assortment of material we have can be ridiculous, but hey…That’s life.

  • GC General

    I enjoyed “The Art of Work” very much. What
    I like most on Jeff Goins’ “The Art of Work” is:
    1. Do it afraid
    2. It’s a messy journey.

    I made a common mistake to
    image the calling was something loud. It’s nice to be affirmed that I
    just have to do it afraid. My voice has been slowly formed over decades and
    its shape can almost be seen in my mind. I know whom I wish to serve and my curiosity on the topic never stops . But I kept waiting for a loud voice to get me start. “The Art of Work” gives me courage to
    jump in, prepares me to get ready for failures. Thank you, Jeff ~ GC

  • Jeff, I like your straight-talk about writing. My perspective is a little different, but see what you think: https://mlatelablog.wordpress.com/2016/08/18/succeed-as-a-writer-yes-you-can/
    @LatelaMary

  • Amy

    Your article makes me want to kill myself. Proud of yourself? Thanks a lot.