The Rich Dad in your first book was based on your friend’s father. What is that friend doing these days? Syed Tabish Rehman CHITTAGONG, BANGLADESH He’s a rich man. He’s managing the family estate. I published Rich Dad, Poor Dad in 1997, and both my real dad and my other dad were dead. If I had written the book while my real dad was still alive, he’d have killed me. If you did not have your Rich Dad in your life, what would you be doing today? Ajay Gupta, GRAYSLAKE, ILL. That’s hard to say. As a young kid, I really wanted to be rich. I think you naturally seek your role models and teachers. Today I still seek mentors and wise men and wise women because that’s how you get wiser–by hanging out with smart people. At one point, you were living out of your car. How did you remain confident that you would be able to retire rich? Stephen San Roman LAREDO, TEXAS Confidence comes from discipline and training. I spent six years in the Marine Corps. Military training teaches you that there are four strengths: mental, emotional, physical and spiritual. What happens for most people, since they lack that discipline, they crack under pressure. That discipline and training kept me going. Is it possible for a person with no money and few resources to still make a fortune? How? Muhammad Zafar ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN Get off your butt. You have to look for teachers. If you want to be a mechanic, go hang out with mechanics. It’s really simple, but it takes determination, discipline, drive. You can’t quit. Do you think anybody can be successful in business? Rogelio Gonzales BRICK TOWNSHIP, N.J. Absolutely. It takes discipline. Most people would like to have a great body like Charles Atlas, but they’re at Burger King wolfing down a Whopper with fries. I don’t know how you can expect to get anything you want without some degree of long-term commitment. Quitting is the easiest thing to do. That’s why most people don’t make it. Does education have anything to do with how rich or poor you become? Muhammad Umar Gulzar NEW YORK CITY No. Education is what you learn after you leave school. You’ve said that your dad forbade your family to talk about money at the dinner table. Are people allowed to talk about money at your dinner table? Jay Siena, TOKYO That’s all I talk about is money. When somebody tells me, “We don’t discuss money”–well, money is discussed every day. We may not discuss religion, we may not discuss politics, but my decision to live in a safer community or have better food–it’s all based upon money. Are there opportunities to create new companies in this turbulent economy? Jefferson Camargo SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL This is the best time. When times are bad is when the real entrepreneurs emerge. Entrepreneurs don’t really care if the market’s up or down. They’re creating better products and better processes. So when somebody says, “Oh, there’s less opportunity now,” it’s because they’re losers. I am in the middle of a business project, but I have doubts and fear of failing. How can I overcome this? Javier Hernandez GUADALAJARA, MEXICO Everybody has doubts and fear of failing. But look at Tiger Woods or any great athlete: when the going gets tough, that’s when they turn into geniuses and most people turn into wimps.