I feel your pain, esp. the cost of color film/processing. BUT:
"If I knew how to take a good photograph, I'd do it every time" - Robert Doisneau
Ansel Adams was said to have been happy if he had 12 or 1 (?) good photo a year (something like that). Although he was a large format dude, Doisneau I believe was a 35mm shooter.
I think your expectations may be too high! A single roll of film "dense w/ good photos" happens to me about . . . once. Period. Ever. And there were a lot of "good" ones on that roll bcs. most of them were my kids . . . so "good" only subjectively. And I'm no Doisneau. If I get one image per 36 shots I'm REAL happy.
Lower your expectations a bit and burn that film, man. It's the only way to learn.