I do a lot of work with the Dyslexia Institute because, for people with dyslexia who do not have parental support, it is a huge disadvantage. I was fortunate because my Mum was a teacher and she taught me to work hard.
I didn’t go to university, and so, every time that I work, I’m looking for a teacher in a way. I’m looking for people that I can learn from and to have the chance to work with people that I admire.
As a teacher at Princeton, I’m surrounded by people who work hard so I just make good use of my time. And I don’t really think of it as work – writing a novel, in one sense, is a problem-solving exercise.
I have had a singing teacher in L.A. for many, many years just to work on my voice as an actor.
We can not wait until we have enough trained people willing to work at a teacher’s salary and under conditions imposed upon teachers in order to improve what happens in the classroom.
In every role that I do – whether I’m a teacher, actor or mentor – I do it with total dedication and as much honesty as I feel is required because there’s no alternative to honesty and hard work.
When I was about 13 or 14, I had an English teacher who made a deal with me that I could get out of doing all of the year’s regular work if I would write a short story a week and on Friday read it to the class.