Definitely not failure if you’ve tried some comps – you had to write the bloomin’ entry first! And from experience, competitions can be a matter of luck as well as great writing – does the judge like your particular genre? Your style? I know from peer-judging comps on the cloud, my own preference for reading material comes through in the kind of thing I think is ‘better’ than anything else, even though the entries are still written to very high standards.
My ‘failure’ is to let life get in the way too much recently and not put writing higher up my list of priorities so that I get my current WIP first draft complete by Xmas. This year, not next.