But the most galling, the most bone-shaking mode of failure of all is to witness your play simply not working, night after night, in front of audiences.
Playwright Steve Walters over at the guardian talks about the importance of being a failure. I agree with him fully on the need for failure, the only way to really enjoy the success of a work is to know the opposite. It plain out sucks but to never fall means your work is only going to be all right. Failure pushes you to be great.
I recently had a bit of a tumble when I received some unexpected criticism of a play in progress. So unexpected that it took two weeks before I could even pick up the piece again. I carried it everywhere, I believed in it, but I just couldn’t seem to get off the floor.
Until I did. And I moved forward. (Cut five pages too) And now I’m stronger for it.