John Ernst Steinbeck was born on February 27, 1902 in Salinas, California to John and Olive Steinbeck. His father was county treasurer and his mother was a schoolteacher. Both his mother and father were a foundation for his writings. He graduated from Salinas High School in June 1919 and attended Stanford from 1919 to 1925, where he majored in English. However, he left with out obtaining a degree. After leaving Stanford, he moved to New York City and attempted to pursue a career as a writer. After failing to find a publisher interested in his work, he employed himself as a manual laborer, and then returned to California a year later. In 1929, he published his first novel, "Cup of Gold." The novel received a less than desirable response. Next year, he married Carol Henning, and the new couple moved in with John's parents due to financial instability. Before 1935, his novels were no great success.
"Tortilla Flat," a comic novel focusing on Mexican-Americans, was his first literary success. The novel gave him the award of "Commonwealth Club of California Gold Medal for Best Novel by a Californian." The fact that both his mother and father died in 1934 caused the victory to be not without sadness.
The 1930s provided Steinbeck with new material for his writings. The Great Depression, which was an economic trapdoor for the nation, brought Steinbeck to write the book widely regarded as his crowning achievement, "Grapes of Wrath." He earned the Pulitzer Prize after writing the book although censorship and suppression of it have existed since it was published, and continue to exist today.
Steinbeck divorced his wife Carol in 1942, and a year later remarried to Gwendolyn Conger. During WWII, Steinbeck was ineligible for military service due to his age as well as his...