William Faulkner Autobiography
I, William Cuthbert Faulkner was an American writer born in 1897 and died in 1962. During my life I achieved many awards including the Nobel prize in 1949 and published many of my books during the 1920s through 30s. I am known for my short stories, but I also wrote essays, poetry, and even a play.
was born in New Albany, Mississippi and had three younger brothers and a hard working mother and father. As a child I worked with my father at his business and spent my free time listening to the stories people had to tell about the war or slavery. I came from a decently rich family due to my father’s Railroad company and hard working mindset. After selling the company we then moved to Oxford, Mississippi where I would live mostly for the rest of my life. When I became a young adult I met Philip Stone who was about my age and influenced me to strengthen my writing career. By the time the war came about I was encouraged to enlist but was saddened when they told me I was too short to join at only being 5’5. Not letting that get to my head I instead joined the British Royal Air Force.
After the war my name was changed from Falkner to Faulkner due to a careless mistake made by a typewriter. At once I got back to writing and scribbled down short stories hoping to get them published but nothing actually happened until 1925 where I wrote my first novel, Soldiers Pay. In the summer of 1927 I attempted to write my first fictional novel set in Yoknapatawpha County; the book was called Flags in the dust. Even though the book was considered good it got rejected, not letting that pull me down I took to writing again. I then began working on a book called the Sound and The Fury, which was much more complete than my first attempt.
Two years later I married Estelle Oldham, my highschool sweetheart who had actually been previously married and brought with her two children that I love very dearly. As a teenager I dated Estelle and was planning to marry her but my plans got shattered when another boy that she was also was dating asked before me. Even though she did not want to marry him she was forced to by her parents. Her marriage only lasted about 10 years and after getting a divorce returned to me, her true love. While married and having kids I wrote during the day and worked at night.
After publishing As I Lay Dying, I was in desperate need of money. To gain some cash I worked as a screenwriter in Hollywood, making new friends along the way such as Howard Hawks. Me and good old Howard enjoyed hunting and drinking together when we were not working. I sadly had a lifelong drinking problem but I didn’t drink while writing because I wanted to stay focused. During the 30’s my books became widely known and my short stories were placed in famous papers such as the Saturday Evening Post. In 34 I took up the skill of flying my own airplane, and after flying it a bit I gave it to my youngest brother Dean. Encouraging him to become a pilot I was stricken with grief after learning about his death in crashing the plain.
A few years after this tragic event I wrote another book called Absalam, Absalam! that was a great success which caused many people to read it. In an attempt to create a saga of my own I rewrote the stories of Yoknapatawpha County a themed in the south in The Sound and The Fury, Sanctuary, and Requiem For a Nun. Due to these books I was mostly known in the 20’s and 30’s but in the south I was somewhat of a legend. Later I would write more books along the way and in 1950 I accomplished the great achievement of earning the Nobel prize which greatly impacted my private life and reputation. Since I had already won this reward it seemed to me that a great weight had been lifted from my shoulders and i took to drinking and traveling. I traveled all over Europe and Asia even being a screenwriter in Egypt. When I got home I gave a Nobel Prize speech on how the humans as a people could survive through this new nuclear age. I took to speaking publicly about my ideas about politics and race actively at home hoping to make a difference. Settling down and getting back to paying attention to my children and other activities such as hunting and horse riding I then bought a new house in Rowan Oak.
In 62 I published my last novel called The Reivers, which was a comedy. A month later I died due to a several not so smart decisions. All through my life I was a drinker which caused my liver to shrink. I also suffered from a heart attack which was the cause of death and got seriously injured when I fell off of too many horses that were to big for me. I was 64 years of age and I was buried in St. Peter’s cemetery in Oxford where my life had been lived along with many of the stories I had written.
After my death I am not only remembered as a great author but as one of the best writers of the 20th century. I had written 13 novels along with many short stories and at age 52 I won the Nobel Prize. My typewriter is even placed in a museum within my hometown and many of my books are still remembered today as well as my quotes. “You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shores”-William Faulkner
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