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33 Industry Insiders On Success, Dreams And Failure


As a writer you will at some point have to deal with constructive criticism, or feedback and/or rejection -whether you asked for it, or not!

Surprisingly, a lot of writers find it hard to accept this, but the truth is if you want to be a writer let alone a good one, you’re going to have to get over that very quickly!

Of course this is FAR easier said than done, especially when the criticism is dished out from (often) misinformed sources. Here are where the pros come in … Here’s 33 Industry Insider tips on how they overcome failure, and keep on going with their dreams!

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1) Jared Leto

Dreams are a result of a million choices, a billion failures and a few successes. MORE: Making It As A Writer: 25 Reasons You Haven’t Yet 

2) Shonda Rimes

Dreams do not come true just because you dream them. It’s hard work that makes things happen. It’s hard work that creates change.

3) Steven Spielberg

All good ideas start out as bad ideas that’s why it takes so long.

4) Charlize Theron

I don’t think you can create anything interesting from a comfort zone. You have to work from a place of fear and failure.

5) J.K.Rowling

It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default. MORE: 25 Writing Secrets of Famous Authors. 

6) Wes Craven

A lot of life is, dealing with the cards you were given that aren’t so nice. Does it make you into a monster, or can you accept it and go in some other direction?

7) Russell Crowe

I’m not driven by people’s praise and I’m not slowed down by people’s criticism.

8) Lupita Nyong’o

It’s only when you risk failure that you discover things. MORE: 5 Ways To Stay Focused On Your Writing Dream.

9) James Cameron

If you set your goals ridiculously high and it’s a failure, you will fail above everyone else’s success.

10) Kate Winslet

I know the true meaning of “getting by, by the skin of my teeth”. You have to carry on. And you can, because you have to.

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11) Martin Scorsese

Know when to accept their criticism and when to say no.

12) Halle Berry

If you set out to do something and you give it your all and it doesn’t work out, be willing to modify your goal slightly.

13) Aaron Sorkin

Don’t forget that good writers borrow other writers. Great writers steal from them outright. MORE: The Habits Of Successful Writers (Infographic) 

14) Elizabeth Olsen

I believe that you are only in control of so much. So whatever you are not in control of you can’t worry about.

15) Spike Lee

Fight the power that be. Fight the power!

16) Gwendoline Christie

I love a challenge. I love defying limitation, gender stereotypes and people’s expectations of me.

17) Sylvester Stallone

I take rejection as someone blowing a bugle in my ear to wake me up and get going, rather than retreat. MORE: Top 20 Quotes For Writing Success.

18) Nicholas Hoult

I don’t really have disappointments, because I build myself up for rejection.

19) Mindy Kaling

Work hard, know your shit, show your shit and then feel entitled because confidence is like respect. You have to earn it.

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20) Will Smith

You have to believe – there is no point having a Plan B because it distracts from Plan A.

21) Johnny Depp

One day the people that didn’t believe in you will tell everyone how they met you.

22) Cate Blanchett

I don’t understand any other way to work than bold-facedly running towards failure.

23) John Lasseter

You can achieve all the things you want to do, but it’s much better to do it with loved ones around you; family and friends that can help you on the way and can celebrate you, and you can enjoy the journey. 

24) Arnold Schwarzenegger

You were born to win, but to be a winner you must plan to win, prepare to win and expect to win.

25) Jodi Picoult

Read a ton. Take a workshop course, so you learn to give and get criticism.

26) Quentin Tarantino

No matter what, the good ideas will always survive. MORE: 6 Ways YOU’RE Stopping Your Own Writing Success.

27) George Lucas

You simply have to put one foot in front of the other and keep going. Put blinders on and plough right ahead.

28) Emma Watson

I don’t want the fear of failure to stop me from doing what I really care about.

29) Stephen King

Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.

30) Tom Hiddleston

Never stop. Never stop fighting. Never stop dreaming. 

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31) Denzel Washington

You pray for rain, you gotta deal with the mud too. That’s a part of it.

32) Amy Schumer

Even on my worst day when I’m feeling awful, I tell myself, “You’re doing the best you can. Good job, Bitch!”

33) Tom Hardy

I think anybody who has a dream to do something, even when you’re most lonely, that dream needs to be nurtured and cultivated. That dream has to keep you company, so I would pour everything into that dream. MORE: 7 Things You Must Stop Doing If You Want To Be A Professional Writer.

IMG_8071BIO: This list was compiled by Olivia Brennan aka @LivSFB – come find me at my website, on Twitter, instagram and in the new Into The Script Facebook group. See you there!



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