Posted by: ahallatt | June 11, 2008

Failure is Good

Great article via Creative Juices (via Boing Boing) on how JK Rowling’s failures in life lead her to work on one of the most successful children’s book series ever.

In 1999, I had what on the surface appeared to be a very successful career in the pharmaceutical industry. I had spent 7 years moving up the ranks and was earning three times what I earn now. I didn’t enjoy the work, but I had made some great friends though it, got to travel to some amazing places and could go out to flash bars and restaurants without a second thought. I was a type A personality (guess I still am), over-achiever, with a belief that I was in control of it all.

And I had never, ever failed. Well, apart from at sport and that didn’t count.

Whilst working in Clinical Research, I kidded myself that one day my cartooning hobby would pay off. Occasionally, I’d submit stuff to newspapers and magazines, but mostly my ideas remained in my head. If it hadn’t been for failure, they probably would have remained that way. Thank god for failing in 1999…


  1. A wise career move, I’d say, sideways and downward slightly to the left, where it’s more fun. Sounds like Stephan Pastis and his leap from the legal profession.

    And good luck on that other upcoming move!

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