A Tale of 10 Dropouts: Famous Authors Who Left School at an Early Age

By Emily Temple

Mark Twain never let his schooling interfere with his education—and neither did these other writers.

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We often find ourselves thinking about the origins of some of our favorite writers—how they found themselves on the writing path, what they read, how they learned. And we've been surprised to realize how many successful writers dropped out of school and ended up (at least for the most part) teaching themselves. Now, don't get us wrong—kids, you should definitely stay in school—but it's worth noting that many of those without a formal education, or without much of one, went on to achieve great success (read: Pulitzers/Nobels/The New York Times Best Seller list) with independent learning. Read about a few of our favorite literary dropouts.

This post also appears on Flavorpill, an Atlantic partner site.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2012/09/a-tale-of-10-dropouts-famous-authors-who-left-school-at-an-early-age/262633/