The Speech that changed me : Neil Gaiman

2012 Commencement Speech

That’s Neil Gaiman.

For all of you that may not be familiar with him, he’s a literary genius, a true motivator, screenwriter, a comic creator and the list goes on.

This was one of his most famous speeches in 2012 given in the University of Philadephia, called ‘Make Good Art’.

I tended to do anything as long as it felt like an adventure, and to stop when it felt like work, which meant that life did not feel like work.

Neil Gaiman

The speech starts with how he ran away from school and began his journey on self education.

From the very start Neil Gaiman has been clear with his dream : He wanted to be a better writer.

Throughout the videos, he gives us funny anecdotes about life, how to make good art, embracing mistakes,career advise, and a list of things he wish he knew before he began his journey in the arts.

Here are a few of my favourite snippets to get you set for watching the video :

Make Good Art

Life is sometimes hard. Things go wrong, in life and in love and in business and in friendship and in health and in all the other ways that life can go wrong. And when things get tough, this is what you should do. Make good art. I’m serious.

Husband runs off with a politician? Make good art. Leg crushed and then eaten by mutated boa constrictor? Make good art. IRS on your trail? Make good art. Cat exploded? Make good art. Somebody on the Internet thinks what you do is stupid or evil or it’s all been done before? Make good art. Probably things will work out somehow, and eventually time will take the sting away, but that doesn’t matter. Do what only you do best.

Make good art. Make it on the good days too.

Neil Gaiman
Leaving you with this,

And now go, and make interesting mistakes, make amazing mistakes, make glorious and fantastic mistakes. Break rules. Leave the world more interesting for your being here. Make good art.

Let me know what inspires you.


  1. […] Neil Gaiman, English author,comic book creator, screenwriter never fails to astonish me. While Hilary Clinton, an American Politician, lawyer, writer has a very intriguing habit. While attending press conferences, Hilary Clinton notes down ideas while listening to the speaker, stuffing them into her pockets, wherein later on her team sit down and discuss them in detail later turning them into policies. […]


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