One of the best-known and most widely appreciated English personalities, Stephen Fry is an award-winning actor, comedian, TV and radio presenter, narrator, voice-over artist, writer, film director, BAFTA host and mental health ambassador.
His multi-talented versatility and intellect, together with his distinctive voice, quick wit and narration skills, have won him respect across the globe, while television programmes such as Blackadder, A Bit of Fry & Laurie, QI and Stephen Fry in America have become international hits. Recent best-selling books from him include Mythos and Heroes. After enjoying an extraordinarily prolific career, Stephen remains a much sought-after personality and presenter worldwide.
Curiosity and a desire to try things out are where it starts for a young person. These help them to explore what they’re good at doing, what comes naturally, easily and what they enjoy.
Almost everyone I have known that has found fulfilment in life (and I include myself) was invariably shocked to discover that hard work is actually what they want to do and is an extraordinary pleasure and the most fulfilling of all things.
Failure is important and it’s natural. You just have to look at a baby trying to walk – the reason it can walk is because he or she has fallen over so many times. All the things we can do later on, all the multitasking, all the amazing processes, these are a result of the failures we experience earlier in life. We’re continuously learning from failure.
When you light a fire, you start with lighting the kindling material. But it’s not the kindling material that’s important, it’s the fire itself. It’s the furnace that builds which matters, and it’s precisely this that can make anyone capable of astonishing things later in life.
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Read more from Stephen Fry and the other 21 exceptional contributors to this book
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Explore other contributors
Tanni, Baroness Grey-Thompson DBE
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Martha, Baroness Lane-Fox CBE
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Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks (1948 – 2020)
Enormously respected religious leader, philosopher, and award winning author