J.K. Rowling on the benefits of failure…& how empathy and imagination re-builds worlds

In her Harvard Commencement address J.K. Rowling is funny, dignified, deep, and delightful. Speaking of the lowest point in her life and how it prepared the way for writing her big idea, she says:

“So why do I talk about the benefits of failure? Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me. Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged. I was set free, because my greatest fear had already been realised, and I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored, and I had an old typewriter and a big idea. And so rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.”

Click here to see, hear, and read the rest of the address which includes a moving segment on her time working for Amnesty International.

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