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permission to fail


(Photo credit: American Artist Ben Murphy)

A handful of quotes to inspire you to fail and fail again because failure is an essential part of the creative process. It’s also a part of life.

If we’re not failing, we’re just not trying hard enough.

So go out there and fail better, fail faster. Rack up as many failures as you possibly can!

An essential aspect of creativity is not being afraid to fail.

–Edwin Land

Success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.

–Winston Churchill

The man who makes no mistakes does not usually make anything.

–E. J. Phelps

It takes sixty-five thousand errors before you are qualified to make a rocket.

–Werhner von Braun

Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.

–Leonard Cohen

I have missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I have lost almost 300 games. On 26 occasions I have been entrusted to take the game-winning shot… and I missed. I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that’s precisely why I succeed.

–Michael Jordan

To develop working ideas efficiently, I try to fail as fast as I can.

–Richard P. Feynman

Would you like me to give you a formula for success? It’s quite simple, really. Double your rate of failure. You are thinking of failure as the enemy of success. But it isn’t at all. You can be discouraged by failure—or you can learn from it. So go ahead and make mistakes. Make all you can. Because, remember, that’s where you will find success.

–Thomas J. Watson

An inventor is almost always failing. He tries and fails maybe a thousand times. If he succeeds once then he’s in.

–Charles Kettering

I failed my way to success.

–Thomas Edison

Ever tried? Ever failed? No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

–Samuel Beckettt

To be wrong is nothing unless you continue to remember it.



The best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas.

–Linus Pauling

If I have a thousand ideas and only one turns out to be good, I am satisfied.

–Alfred Nobel

So try not to be too attached to any of the ideas you currently have.

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2 thoughts on “permission to fail

  1. Love this, Joycelyn. Perfectionism is one of writing’s worst enemies so it’s good to remember that failure is a necessary evil.

  2. Thank you, Lorena. Yes, we’re always trying for the elusive perfect phrase or sentence or paragraph. It’s a creativity killer for sure. 🙂

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