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A biography of charles dickens a writer

Charles was the second of eight children to John Dickens 1786—1851a clerk in the Navy Pay Office, and his wife Elizabeth Dickens 1789—1863. The Dickens family moved to London in 1814 and two years later to Chatham, Kent, where Charles spent early years of his childhood. Due to the financial difficulties they moved back to London in 1822, where they settled in Camden Town, a poor neighborhood of London.

His father, who had a difficult time managing money and was constantly in debt, was imprisoned in the Marshalsea debtor's prison in 1824.

Charles Dickens Biography

Because of this, Charles was withdrawn from school and forced to work in a warehouse that handled 'blacking' or shoe polish to help support the family. This experience left profound psychological and sociological effects on Charles. It gave him a firsthand acquaintance with poverty and made him the most vigorous and influential voice of the working classes in his age. After a few months Dickens's father was released from prison and Charles was allowed to go back to school.

At fifteen his formal education ended and he found employment as an office boy at an attorney's, while he studied shorthand at night.

  1. In 1858, in London, Dickens undertook his first public readings for pay, and quarreled with his old friend and rival, the great novelist Thackeray. The return to daily journalism soon proved a mistake—the biggest fiasco in a career that included few such misdirections or failures.
  2. He was indeed very much a public figure, actively and centrally involved in his world, and a man of confident presence.
  3. Dickens and Ellen Ternan, returning from a Paris holiday, were badly shaken up in a railway accident in which a number of people were injured. Dickens was now really unwell but carried on, compulsively, against his doctor's advice.
  4. Also, the geniality and unequalled comedy of the novels must be related to the sufferings, errors, and self-pity of their author and to his concern both for social evils and for the perennial griefs and limitations of humanity.
  5. The paid series began in April 1858, the immediate impulse being to find some energetic distraction from his marital unhappiness.

From 1830 he worked as a shorthand reporter in the courts and afterwards as a parliamentary and newspaper reporter. In 1833 Dickens began to contribute short stories and essays to periodicals.

A Dinner at Popular Walk was Dickens's first published story.

  • After the success of Pickwick Dickens embarked on a full-time career as a novelist, producing work of increasing complexity at an incredible rate;
  • Early Victorian England and Charles DickensClifton Fadiman examining the inspiration Charles Dickens's work took from the milieu of Victorian England, with its startling contrasts of morality and hypocrisy, splendour and squalor, prosperity and poverty;
  • Hard Times began to appear weekly in Household Words in 1854, and continued until August;
  • The contents are revealing in relation to his novels:

It appeared in the Monthly Magazine in December 1833. In 1834, still a newspaper reporter, he adopted the soon to be famous pseudonym Boz. Dickens's first book, a collection of stories titled Sketches by Boz, was published in 1836.

Reading Comprehension | Short Biography of Charles Dickens

In the same year he married Catherine Hogarth, daughter of the editor of the Evening Chronicle. Together they had 10 children before they separated in 1858. Although Dickens's main profession was as a novelist, he continued his journalistic work until the end of his life, editing The Daily News, Household Words, and All the Year Round.

His connections to various magazines and newspapers gave him the opportunity to begin publishing his own fiction at the beginning of his career.

Beginning of a literary career

Pickwick became one of the most popular works of the time, continuing to be so after it was published in book form in 1837. After the success of Pickwick Dickens embarked on a full-time career as a novelist, producing work of increasing complexity at an incredible rate: Oliver Twist 1837-39Nicholas Nickleby 1838-39The Old Curiosity Shop and Barnaby Rudge as part of the Master Humphrey's Clock series 1840-41all being published in monthly instalments before being made into books.

In 1842 he travelled with his wife to the United States and Canada, which led to his controversial American Notes 1842 and is also the basis of some of the episodes in Martin Chuzzlewit.

  1. Intermittently, until shortly before his death, he gave seasons of readings in London and embarked upon hardworking tours through the provinces and in 1867—68 the United States.
  2. He had been toying with the idea of turning paid reader since 1853, when he began giving occasional readings in aid of charity.
  3. In 1829 he became a free-lance reporter at Doctor's Commons Courts, and in 1830 he met and fell in love with Maria Beadnell, the daughter of a banker. Dickens enjoyed a wider popularity during his lifetime than had any previous author.
  4. After the success of Pickwick, Dickens embarked on a full-time career as a novelist, producing work of increasing complexity at an incredible rate, although he continued, as well, his journalistic and editorial activities. Dickens's health was worsening, but he took over still another physically and mentally exhausting task, editorial duties at All the Year Round.
  5. The invention of the Christmas books A Christmas Carol , suddenly conceived and written in a few weeks in late 1843, was the first of these Christmas books a new literary genre thus created incidentally. It seems likely that she became his mistress, though probably not until the 1860s; assertions that Ternan gave birth to a child remain unproved, though Claire Tomalin, in biographies of Ternan and Dickens, has argued persuasively that she did.

In 1856 his popularity had allowed him to buy Gad's Hill Place, an estate he had admired since childhood. In 1858 Dickens began a series of paid readings, which became instantly popular. In all, Dickens performed more than 400 times.

In that year, after a long period of difficulties, he separated from his wife. It was also around that time that Dickens became involved in an affair with a young actress named Ellen Ternan. The exact nature of their relationship is unclear, but it was clearly central to Dickens's personal and professional life. In the closing years of his life Dickens worsened his declining health by giving numerous readings.

During his readings in 1869 he collapsed, showing symptoms of mild stroke. He retreated to Gad's Hill and began to work on Edwin Drood, which was never completed.

Charles Dickens died at home on June 9, 1870 after suffering a stroke. The inscription on his tomb reads: