Have you ever failed at something? John Steinbeck dropped out of college and became a great writer. Even though Steinbeck failed to continue his education in college, he still became a successful author of several books. John Steinbeck was an award-winning novelist who used his writings to impact the lives of others by sharing stories of current events around the world, especially ones close to his home in California.
John Steinbeck was born in Salinas, California on February 27, 1902 in a stately home on Central Avenue. His parents were Olive Hamilton (mother) and John Ernest Stenbeck (father). He had pretty good relationships with his parents. Olive loved reading and writing, so she supported his writings. John Ernest traveled a lot for his jobs and other things, so his work put a strain on their relationship (Biography.com). Steinbeck started his writing career at age 14.
His first opportunity as a writer was at the high school that he attended, Salinas High School, writing newspaper articles for the weekly events and being the associate editor (oprah.com). Steinbeck attended college at Stanford University. He planned to study English Literature, but he dropped out after six years in 1925 without accepting a degree. He then moved to New York and started working as a construction worker. After that, he took a job as a caretaker in Lake Tahoe.
At the end of every day, Steinbeck would sit in his room with the door locked and write poems and stories (biography.com). John Steinbeck was married three times and had two sons.
He married his first wife, Carol Henning in 1930. She supported him with her paycheck while he wrote. They separated in 1941 and divorced by 1943. Shortly after his divorce, Steinbeck married Gwendolyn “Gwynn” Conger. Gwynn gave him his only children, Thomas and John Steinbeck Jr. He divoreced Gwynn in 1948 and remarried in 1950 to Elaine Anderson-Scott.
John and Elaine remained together until his death in 1968. He died on December 20, 1968 in New York City, and his ashed were buried in his family plot in Salinas, California (biography.com) (oprah.com). “Steinbeck wrote 31 books over the course of his career. His most well-known novels include Of Mice and Men, Grapes of Wrath, and East of Eden” (biography.
com). When Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath came out, its portrayal of the struggles of migrant workers outraged landowners (neh.gov). Many people thought that Steinbeck was spreading communist propaganda.
This novel won him the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize. The novel Of Mice and Men is about two poor workers, Lennie and George, who were working for the American dream in California during The Great Depression. Lennie had a mental problem and George had a problem about getting in trouble. They had one goal: to own some land and a small house (biography.com). The novel The Grapes of Wrath is one of his best novels.
It portrays the story of a man, Tom Joad, and his family who are forced from their Oklahoma farm in the Dust Bowl era and set out to California in search of land, jobs, and hopefully a brighter future. This book was an award winner and a fast seller, selling 10,000 copies per week (biography.com). Steinbeck wrote a fictional novella in 1947 called “The Pearl”. The story is based on a Mexican folktale. It is the story of a Mexican pearl diver, Kino, who explores man’s nature as well as greed, defiance of social norms, and evil.
It is also based upon his family life with his wife, Juana, and their son, Coyotito. It brings great fortune to all who read it (oprah.com). John Steinbeck won a Nobel Prize for literature because he was so creative and realistic with his writings. Steinbeck even had a museum in downtown Salinas. It shows how much impact he had on the lives of others. Steinbeck is truly a citizen of Salinas and also a citizen of the world (Steinbeck.org).
Between 1932 and 1936, Steinbeck spent most of his time writing short stories. In March 1932, the publishing company, Jonathan Cape and Robert Ballou Inc., accepted Steinbeck’s manuscript of “The Pastures of Heaven”, a short story.
Another one of his short stories was accepted, “The Red Pony”. In 1935, John Steinbeck had some success with the novella “Tortilla Flat”, a story that had many adventures (www.steinbeck.org).
After the attack on Pearl Harbor on January 7, 1941, Steinbeck was a patriot, along with many others, as the United States entered World War II. Steinbeck was devoted to writing propaganda for the war effort. He wrote a story called “The Story of a Bomber Team” after he recorded a bomber team in Bombs Away. In the same year, he produced another play called “The Moon is Dawn”, which came from a village in Northern Europe.
During the war, a person could be executed for having a copy of “The Moon is Dawn.” After the war, Steinbeck published “The Pearl” In conclusion, John Steinbeck was a successful American novelist who used his writing to impact the lives others by sharing stories of current events. He shared moments from The Great Depression era to the World War II era. Steinbeck was successful in that he provided a way for people to get perspective on the things in that time that the media would not produce for the public. He was also successful in that he didn’t let his failure to finish college stop him from being a successful writer and novelist.