Can Mark Twain’s Childhood Inspire Future Young Authors?

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Writers are both naturally born and can be made. Early childhood can be a source of inspiration for a great novelist. Mark Twain is an example of a great writer who received creative inspiration from his childhood home and its surrounding world.

Here are some exciting events in his life that inspired his future.

Mark Twain’s life came with a burst of light when he was born when Halley’s Comet crossed the sky. The Comet followed this great writer throughout his life.  Mark Twain died that day, and the Comet returned. 75 years later.





The world around him, the landscape, and the people put a significant imprint on him. So much so that most of his famous tales come from this childhood world.

Work-life began early for Mark Twain.

At 12, he moved into a printer’s house and became a typesetter’s apprentice.






At 15, the great future author quit school to work full-time at his brother’s newspaper, and his writing career burst forward. While his brother, Orion was out of town, he wrote exaggerated tales under a fake name.


At 16, he continued learning at the local library. Then, at 17, he sought his fortune by trying many jobs, from a journalist and lumberman to steamboat captain; sadly, he fell on hard times.



His illustrious career launched when he changed his name from his birth name of Samuel Clemens to Mark Twain. This is because of the riverboat leadsman’s cry of “mark twain” which was a safe river depth of 12 feet. As author Mark Twain, he found his famous career when he wrote his first novel, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, based on his boyhood experiences.







Mark Twain’s fantastic career experiences included meeting and developing friendships with great people like Nikola and Helen Keller.




Now you can share this great writer’s inspirational childhood with future child authors to guide them to discover their writing futures like Mark Twain.

Here are some helpful ideas that may inspire budding young authors to grow their creativity.

Kids Explore their natural world and the world around them.

Imagineforest  offers 7 Outdoor Writing Activities for kids to help kids enjoy nature and discover the outdoor world with writing activities.

Kids discover their writing skills

34 Nature Writing Prompts for kids from journal buddies gives young students ideas about nature from early American authors like Henry Thoreau to modern writers like Annie Dillard, illustrating the long and storied tradition of exploring the natural world through observation and reflection.

Expositorywritingprompts gives kids help in expanding the awareness of their surrounding world to help awaken their creative writing skills.

Kids expand their horizons in libraries

Expanding Learning offers school and public libraries expanded learning and after-school project.

Kids find new skills from a part-time job that may awaken their inner writer

Supermoney offers 14 Cool Job Ideas for Kids of All Ages, giving work options that help kids grow up and start their careers.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you will come back.

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Judy Kundert

Judy Kundert, a recipient of the Marquis Who’s Who Excellence in Authorship award, loves storytelling, from folk and fairy tales to classics for elementary school children. She authors award-winning middle-grade novels designed to inspire and intrigue children. After she left her career as a United Airlines stewardess, she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Loyola University, Chicago and a Master of Arts from DePaul University, Chicago. Most recently, she completed a master’s Certificate in Public Relations and Marketing from the University of Denver. For fun, she likes reading (usually three or four books at a time), watching movies from the oldies to the current films, traveling, biking, and hiking in vast Colorado outdoors with her husband. Learn more at can find me at the foot of the Colorado Rocky Mountains hiking, biking

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