Divorced, unemployed with a child to take care of, J.K. Rowling felt her life was a complete failure.
She started to write in local cafes because the walk was the best way to make her baby fall asleep. In 1995, Rowling ﬁnished her manuscript for “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” which was typed on an old manual typewriter. The book was submitted to twelve publishing houses before ﬁnally being published a year later. The advance was a mere £1,500 and some free advice: get a day job, there was little chance of her ever making any money in children’s books.
Ten years later, Rowling was the ﬁrst writer ever to become a billionaire, much of which she has since given away to charity. Rowling has often said that it was her complete failure that allowed her focus on her writing.
The moral of the story: “What can failure free you up to do?”