J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter novels was waitressing and on public assistance when she was writing the first installment of what would become one of the best selling series in history. The book was rejected by a dozen publishers. The only reason it got published at all was because the CEO's eight year old daughter begged him to publish it.
“Failure meant a stripping away of the inessential.” - J.K. Rowling
Now, if that isn't a great Zen line, I don't know what is!