Thirty-four ace achievers, who don't mind being asked, tell all. How they made it: ""Success was truly the only idea"" (adman Jerry Della Femina); ""I guess it goes back to the old report card"" (model mogul Eileen Ford); ""I've always been like a hustler"" (sports promoter Don King). How they rate luck, hard work, challenge: ""There's a better word than luck: timing"" (rock star Alice Cooper); ""Hard work is all it is, man"" (illustrator/costumer Joe Eula, and many more). What about risk and failure? ""I'm thirty-seven years old. I'm not afraid. I can do it again, or I can do something else."" (Benihana restaurateur Rocky Aoki) ""Security? In this business?"" (moviemaker Martin Scorsese) The rewards? ""You don't have to take all the shit the world hands out to the average person"" (Mad mag-hate William Gaines). But there are problems, notably envy--and for Howard Cosell, the effect on his daughters: ""it's not easy to read that your father is a scoundrel and your father is an idiot. . . ."" Less go-go are importer Alexis Lichine's recollections of bringing wine to the boondocks and ""bioautobiographer"" Gerold Frank's confession that ""I wasn't quite hep so I wanted to experience other people's experiences, perhaps without their suffering."" Thanks to the index, you can follow your favorite star. . . but be warned: anyone who has to ask the way to the comer office, won't get there.