Book Authors: Before They Became Famous

Many book authors didn’t start off being bestselling writers. They started with all sort of jobs. Here are a few of the odd jobs writers have worked prior to their success as book authors.

Charles Dickens, author of The Tale of Two Cities — At age 12, he worked in a shoe polish factory labeling jars.

William Faulkner, author of The Sound and the Fury — He worked as a postmaster at the University of Mississippi. At one time, he also worked night shifts at the boiler room of the university.

F. Scott Fitzgerald, author of The Great Gatsby — His first job was writing slogans for trolley placards at an advertising agency.

Writers' Weird Jobs

James Joyce, author of Ulysses — He composed melodies, played piano and guitar, sang songs, and earned a living as a performer.

Ken Kesey, author of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest — He worked as a janitor at a mental hospital.

Stephen King, author of Carrie and The Stand — His job as a high school janitor inspired his first novel.

Harper Lee, author of To Kill a Mockingbird and Go Set a Watchman — She worked as a clerk for Eastern Air Lines.

Jack London, author of Call of the Wild — He was an oyster pirate (someone who steals and sells oysters).

Chuck Palahniuk, author of Fight Club — He worked as a dishwasher, movie projectionist, bicycle messenger, diesel mechanic, and assembly line mechanic for Freightliner before becoming a full-time writer.

J.D. Salinger, author of The Catcher in the Rye — He worked as an entertainment director for a Swedish cruise ship.

Kurt Vonnegut, author of Slaughterhouse-Five — He worked as a Saab car dealer.


About John Kremer

John Kremer is author of 1001 Ways to Market Your Books, the Relationships Matter Marketing program, and many other books and reports on book marketing, Internet marketing, social media, and book publicity. -- .

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