I saw another blog recently where the question was asked "Is it time to give up?" The question had been posed to the blogger by someone who had been working at it for a decade and had gotten nowhere.
The blogger, a published author, said the question deserved a serious answer instead of just the typical rah-rah, never-quit, never-say-die cheer. Then he proceeded to give that never-say-die answer he'd just decried.
Frankly, the question is legitimate and it does deserve a serious answer. The problem is the only people who ever answer this question publicly are those who've succeeded or those who still have hope of succeeding. The first bunch--the published author--is of course going to think it was worth it. The second bunch--the hopefuls--doesn't dare entertain the idea that it's not.
But I've known people who quit. At one time, there was an amazingly talented writer in my face-2-face critique group who quit. Why? Because his wife was tired of how isolated she felt when he wrote. She was jealous of the things he shared with the writers' group that he didn't share with her (don't know if that's so but it's how she saw it). She gave him a choice. His family or his writing. He chose his family.
Does he regret it? I don't know. I imagine he regrets having to make the choice in the first place, but I suspect he'd have regretted losing his family more than he regrets giving up writing.
So I'm hesitant to act as a cheerleader when the question comes up. It's a struggle to get where we want to go, and we can sacrifice so much and still never get there. Is it worth it? If the answer depends on whether we succeed or fail, then there's no way to know until you're on the other side. If you reach the end and you've never published, will you regret what you've given up?
I don't think this isn't a question someone else can answer for you.
Have you wrestled with this dilemma? How did you make your decision? And what do you say when someone asks you "is it time to quit?"