a podcast about writing & failure


The Fail Safe

We dig failure.

The Fail Safe podcast explores how today’s most successful writers grapple with and learn from creative failure. From the blank page to the broken sentence, we examine the many challenges and pitfalls of the literary life and discover how authors transform false starts, dead ends, and assorted blunders into works of literary genius. Produced collaboratively by draft: the journal of process and The Iowa Writers’ House, The Fail Safe provides encouragement for anyone who’s ever wanted to write and pulls back the curtain on the creative process for a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the writer-at-work.

draft: the journal of processIowa Writers' House

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If you’ve ever listened to and loved The Fail Safe, consider donating today to help ensure our content remains free, our production stays quality, and our live events continue to happen in cities across the country. This is our labor of love in support of creativity, authors, and literature. Show us some love in return with a little (or big) gift.


Coming Soon

episodes in production

Kelly Link

Short story writer Kelly Link invites readers into the slipstream with stories of the fantastic. Link has collected a Hugo...

Jessica Hopper

  Jessica Hopper is a music and culture critic based in Chicago. Her work has been included in Best Music Writing...

Alissa Nutting

Alissa Nutting

Alissa Nutting is author of the short story collection Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls, selected by judge Ben Marcus as winner...