Charles Dickens Biography Essay

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Charles Dickens

Charlotte Toal “Whatever I have tried to do in life, I have tried with all my heart to do it well; whatever I have devoted myself to, I have devoted myself completely; in great aims and in small I have always thoroughly been in earnest.”
These inspirational words spoken by Charles Dickens are not what come to mind when people think of this remarkably talented and widely appreciated author, but his great and timeless works are. As a man of compassion, insight, and aptitude, the English author had many thoughts, both those he incorporated into his books, and those he did not. As a young boy in England, Dickens got a generous taste of hardship and suffering. Many poor families—like his—worked in factories. The particular factory, in which he worked for several years, was a shoe polish factory. While his father was in debtors’ prison, Dickens’ family moved away from him to be close to the prison. The twelve-year-old boy was forced to live alone and work. Although the first years of his life were neither the most pleasant nor advantageous, it was not always that way for Dickens. Though most present-day authors, business men, or politicians don’t establish themselves in a particular working venue or business until later in life, Charles Dickens became an accomplished freelance reporter and stenographer, and by age twenty he had become a reporter for two newspapers. Shortly after beginning his writing career, Dickens began submitting—and publishing—sketches and impressions of his own composition. His first, was a series of scenes from London life. Being exceedingly popular, the stories were later published into a book entitled: Sketches by Boz. Dickens had signed these pages to the newspaper “Boz”, that being the reason for the book title. Another of his monthly installments to the newspaper was The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club, or The Pickwick Papers. Rapidly and easily becoming one of the most popular works of its time, the Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club too was published into a book. Although Dickens's career was somewhat successful, for the next decade none of his books achieved the standard of his two previous successes. These works include: Nicholas Nickleby, The Old Curiosity Shop, and Barnaby Rudge. At an age close to twenty six, Dickens met, and then married, Catherine Hogarth. Dickens was able to marry and support a family because of his talent as a writer, and his ability to make a living from writing books, something not easy to do during his time, or any time for that matter. Together Charles and Catherine Dickens had ten children and were, for a time, very happy. Until the 1850’s the Dickens family had seemingly no troubles, but