I became awesome through work, and focus, a tiny bit of talent, and a massive amount of persistence. And let’s not forget about luck. That’s the key point. Without that, nothing happens right in the world. I started out awful. And I ended up awesome for all of those reasons, and anybody can do it, all you have to do is devote your life and your mind and your heart to it, and you’re on your way going in the right direction.
-Neil Diamond, from 10/16/2014 Reddit AMA