How to Steal Fire

How to Steal Fire

The Myths of Creativity Exposed, The Truths of Creativity Explained


Random House presents the audiobook edition of How to Steal Fire, written and read by Stephen Bayley and Roger Mavity.

Creativity is a fundamental challenge that everyone faces in the modern world, be they in business, in education or a struggling artist or musician. Indeed it touches all our lives in hundreds of different ways, from the clothes we buy to the buildings we live in. But this book is not about how to knit an exciting jumper, it's about individuals reclaiming themselves from the anonymous dreariness of a data-driven, collectivised, faceless culture.

It's a human compulsion to be creative, to do and make new things. Without it, we'd still be mired in protoerozoic slime. Maurice Saatchi once said that creativity is the last legal way of getting an unfair advantage in business. But if creativity is legal, it is not always moral or ethical. In a signature act of creativity, Prometheus stole fire from the gods.

In The School of Genius, psychiatrist Anthony Storr convincingly argued that being alone with your own thoughts is the most reliable and productive method of generating ideas. But your own thoughts will be more productive when you have read this book, for it promotes the benefits of simplifying, thinking boldly and being undaunted by challenges.


  • Very interesting... Talks a lot about the origins of creativity.
    Andrew Marr, Start the Week

About the authors

Stephen Bayley

Stephen Bayley was the person for whom the term "design guru" was coined, something he accepts with what he likes to think of as self-deprecating irony. After a short and blameless period in provincial academe, he joined Terence Conran in an attempt to popularise design. This resulted in The Boilerhouse Project in London's V&A which became the most successful gallery of the eighties. The Boilerhouse evolved into the unique Design Museum which Mrs Thatcher opened in 1989, after some finger wagging and insisting it should not be called a "museum". During this period he learnt a lot about the perversity of genius and the absurdity of ambition.

Stephen Bayley has written many books and hundreds of articles which have shaped the popular understanding of design. This is his first attempt at fiction. He is Chairman of The Royal Fine Art Commission Trust, an honorary visiting professor at the Liverpool University School of Architecture and a Chevalier de l'Ordre Des Arts et Des Lettres, France's highest artistic accolade.
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Roger Mavity

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