failing in order to succeed

There is a great video of Ira Glass of This American Life giving advice to people who want to create stories. He’s good some very down-to-earth advice that I think applies to all creative people and artists. One idea he stresses is that you need failure — lots and lots of failure — in order to have any kind of success. As he says:

“You are going to (create) a lot of stuff and it’s going to go nowhere, and you should be happy about that. If you’re doing that, you’re doing it right…. If you’re not failing all the time, you are not creating a situation where you can get super lucky.”

Only by taking risks that are so big that you almost always screw up can you make anything of value. Awesome advice.

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4 Comments

  1. So much great advice in those videos. I have to go back and take notes!!

  2. It reminds me of the saying “If you’re not failing, you’re not trying hard enough”. It is a great reminder and motivator.

  3. Just what I needed to read after 1/2 a kiln load failed! I was ready to quit and get a normal job.

  4. Well, does Mr. Glass have some extra storage space for me to file away my failures?

    Guess I’ll head to the studio tomorrow and concentrate on failing.

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