The Writer’s Existential Loop: Winners or Not

I have a writer friend who has worked on the same character conflict for about fifteen years – fifteen years! I wonder if she can call herself a writer. There must be another name for that. She seems to in an existential loop.
“Friend. Life is the same everywhere.
Erase/Rewind and henceforth.”
Devang May 16,2008 at 4:21 AM on
monicaiyengar.blogspot.com/2008/5/existential-loop.html

As opposed to her, I know another writer who took eleven years to write a book, then received top honors for her work. She was a writer the whole time. Both of them are writing and producing, but little. One was able to write to completion, the other may never complete her work.
Howard Howey began his Silo Series in 2011. He has written those and in his Sand Series in the last three years. I just finished the first of his Wool Series; I think it is one of the best written books I’ve read.
I think there is something to be said for someone who actually completes a work even if it is not published formally. Why? The definition of a Winner, Eric Berne, the creator of Transactional Analysis, used is this: ‘a winner is defined as a person who fulfills his contract with the world and himself or herself.’ That is, they are able to do what they set out to do.
So, for Berne, if an adult with mental deficiencies aspires to work in the cafeteria and lands a job in one, he or she is a winner. Likewise, someone who sets out to be a writer is a winner, if he or she succeeds to completion.
I like his definition because so many can fit the class of being a winner. The normal way of looking at it, someone who wins the competition, leaves many out.