I am still learning so many things about HubPages, as I am NOT a high tech person.
All I know is that because of HubPages, I am writing, writing, writing. If I eventually get paid, that's a "bonus blessing."
There are many things I still do not understand, but writing keeps my brain active and creative. Right now, that is the most important thing to me.
To define "success" right now with HubPages, I feel that every time I have a new follower, or meet people I follow, that, to me, is success. The kind comments I receive from Hubbers mean the world to me. I think taking the time to comment on a person's hub is a win-win for both. Nothing encourages me more, as a writer, to receive positive comments. I also love commenting on the excellent hubs I have read these past few months.
Yes it is time consuming, especially since I am working on a book. However, with writers, the important word is commitment.
I am constantly learning to balance my writing with my other daily tasks. All I know is that writing has to take the lead. None of us will be here forever, and, for myself, I don't want to get to the end of my life saying I didn't give writing a shot.
As for your question, "Do you believe that success in Hubpages is 'slowly but surely?' That I can only answer as time goes on. Right now it is slow, but I AM SURELY writing!~ Blessings, Sparklea :)