Paperclips Magazine literary authors

Whatever career you want to have, you will probably be told that it is better to have an elite, university education. People will say that it is the best credential to have when you want to climb the ladder of success. However, there are actually lucrative jobs that don’t need a Harvard degree. You don’t need a college education just to be able to earn your first million. One such job that can make you a millionaire is writing a novel, which will in turn become a bestseller.

Here are those prime examples of bestselling authors who didn’t finish college yet were able to earn money through writing:

#1. Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou is one of the bestselling authors who took their own experiences as a basis to the novels they’ve written. Taking inspiration from her tragic childhood, Angelou was able to publish an autobiography entitled I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. As for her educational background though, she only managed to graduate from high school. Right after graduating, she gave birth to her son. Needing to support herself and her son, she became a prostitute and a pimp. It wasn’t until she was 40 years old that she concentrated on her writing career.

#2. Ray Bradbury

Those who have read Fahrenheit 451 will definitely know who Ray Bradbury is. After all, this person is the author of the said classic novel. Despite having written a bestselling masterpiece, Bradbury has never attended college – and has no intention of attending one either! He barely finished his high school education yet he was still able to earn a hefty sum out of writing.

#3. Truman Capote

Capote’s desire to become a writer started at the age of 11. Starting from that age, he spent his childhood honing his writing craft. His childhood was anything but pleasant as he was considered to be an eccentric child. Her mother eventually ended up sending him to military school, which didn’t really do anything to toughen Capote as his mother expected. Fresh out of high school, Capote became a copyboy for The New Yorker. At the age of 41, he eventually published In Cold Blood.

#4. H.G. Wells

At age eight, H.G. Wells suffered from a leg injury that left him bedridden. To pass time, his father would bring him books from the local library. This marked the start of his love for literature. When his father, who was a professional cricket player, suffered a leg injury as well, Wells was forced to quit school so he can work as a draper’s apprentice. In the long run, he was able to switch jobs to become a teacher. From there, he became a famous science fiction novelist, with masterpieces such as The Time Machine and The War of the Worlds.

#5. Mark Twain

With the pen name of Mark Twain, Samuel Langhorne Clemens was a school drop out at 12 years of age. He was forced to quit school after his father died just so he can earn money. He started writing at the age of 15. At the age of 30, he eventually got a job as a journalist. His masterpieces include Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and A Tramp Abroad. Twain honed his writing schools via public libraries.

#6. Charles Dickens

One of Charles Dickens’ dream when he was a child was to become famous. Due to his family situation, he was only able to enjoy sporadic formal education. Instead of spending most of his time at school, Charles Dickens was working factory jobs. His impoverished childhood is what inspired the many bestselling classics he has written over the span of his lifetime.

#7. William Faulkner

William Faulkner is definitely a popular author given that he has already won a Nobel Prize. However, he is also one of those bestselling writers who don’t even have a high school diploma. Instead of going to school, he enlisted himself into the Canadian Royal Air Force for a year. After his military stint, he later enrolled in University of Mississippi. He wasn’t able to finish his education though since he dropped out after attending only three semesters. Despite that, he was able to successfully publish his poetry book when he was 27 years old.