Before They Were Famous Authors

Before they make it big, writers have to pay the bills somehow. Can you guess what these famous scribes were doing before they were household names?
1 of 10

Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games

Writer for the Nickelodeon show Clarissa Explains It All
Corporate Communications writer at Wells Fargo
Wrote press releases for Microsoft
Ghostwriter for Danielle Steele
2 of 10

George R.R. Martin, A Song of Ice and Fire

Author of history textbooks
The Twilight Zone scriptwriter
Penned a fly-fishing book called Fishing for Fun - and to Wash Your Soul
Copywriter at a Staten Island advertising agency 
3 of 10

Neil Gaiman, American Gods 

Scriptwriter for Coronation Street, a British soap opera
Staff editor at Rolling Stone
Journalist for National Geographic
Author of a biography on Duran Duran
4 of 10

R.L. Stine, Goosebumps

Head writer for the Nickeoldeon show Eureeka’s Castle
Speechwriter for Richard Nixon
Wrote movie reviews for the Columbus Dispatch
Had never written before. 
5 of 10

Margaret Mitchell, Gone With the Wind

Wrote obituaries for the Atlanta Journal
Author of the “Dick and Jane” children’s books
Gossip columnist for the Sunday Magazine
Wrote erotica under the name “Pansy O’Hara”
6 of 10

Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

Penned instruction manuals for vacuum cleaners
Wrote for the Burns and Allen radio show
Reporter for the L.A. Times
Made a penny a sentence transcribing copy for his dad.
7 of 10

David Levithan, Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist

Writer for the Nickeoldeon show Are You Afraid of the Dark?
Ghostwriter for the Baby-sitters Club series
Worked in marketing at Allstate insurance
Wrote blog posts for
8 of 10

L. Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Wrote brochures for his church
Wrote advertising copy for a hardware store owned by his uncle
Authored a book about rearing chickens
Had never written before.
9 of 10

Truman Capote, In Cold Blood

Court reporter
Ghost writer for Louis L’Amour
Editorial assistant for Mademoiselle
Editor at Vanguard Press
10 of 10

Jeannette Walls, The Glass Castle

Show writer at Disneyland
Worked in Corporate Communications at Bank of America
Scripted video games, including Assassin’s Creed
Gossip columnist at