You have read their books, became their fan and maybe even met them at a book signing event held in your city/country. But how well do you know them ?

Now,now. This is not a test to determine who is the biggest fan of which author, no sir, it ain’t. It is only about how well you know not just their work, but also what they’ve done before becoming full-time writers – which afterwards, due to their big writing talent, became bestselling authors.

I’ve been thinking about this for a while now and realized that, I do not know all about my favorite authors as well as I initially thought I did. I still love them, of course and there’s no point in denying the fact that I will always do so.

As it fits a good writer before getting down to writing the post, I have done a small research of my own and came up with a list of 20 bestselling authors who left their 9 to 5 jobs to a full-time writing job.


Top 20 Authors That Went From 9 To 5 Jobs To Bestselling Authors


1. Richelle Mead - NYT Bestselling author of Frostbite



We all heard or know about her, by being the Bestselling Author of - the worldwide known – Vampire Academy series. How many of us do actually know what she did before starting to write full-time ? I’ll tell you this. Due to her Master Of Teaching gained from the University Of Washington, she used to teach full-time in suburban Seattle, to 8 graders; where she taught Social Studies and English.





2. Lisa Renee Jones - NYT Bestselling Author of the highly acclaimed Inside Out Series


Lisa Renee Jones


Prior her writing career, she owned a multi-state staffing agency which has been recognized by The Austin Business Journal  many times and has been praised by Dallas Women Magazine. In 1998, Lisa has been listed among number 7 most growing women owned business in Entrepreneur Magazine.






3. Dan Brown  - Bestselling Author of The Da Vinci Code


Dan Brown

 He used to teach at Amherst College and Phillips Exeter Academy.







4. Marie Rutkoski  – Author The Winner’s Curse


Marie Rutkoski



Besides being a full-time writer she also is also a professor at Brooklyn College, where she teaches Renaissance Drama, Children’s Literature and Fiction Writing.





5. Shannon A. Thompson – Bestselling author of Minutes Before Sunset 


Shannon A. Thompson 


 She was merely 16 when she was first published, and a lot has happened since then. Shannon’s work has appeared in numerous poetry collections and anthologies. Between the ages of 15 and 19 she worked in the restaurants business, and following her graduation she worked as a social marketer for her former publisher. After, the publishing house has closed down, Shannon became a full-time writer, blogger and editor.





6. Colleen Hoover  – Author Of Slammed and other bestselling titles such as : Hopeless, Never Never, Confess and Maybe


Colleen Hoover

      Prior her graduation from Texas A&M – Commerce, with a degree in Social Work, she worked various social work and teaching jobs. She became a Bestselling author with Slammed on July 22, 2012.




7. Siobhan Davis - Bestselling author of the Young Adult Sci-Fi series, called True Calling. 

Siobhan Davis  




Prior her writing career, she has developed - over the last 20 years -  a rather successful career in Human Resources.




8. Wendy Higgins – Bestselling Author of Sweet Peril, the first instalment in the Sweet Evil series.


Wendy Higgins

After gaining her Creative Writing degree from George Mason University and a Masters In Curriculum and Instructions from Radford, she taught highschool English.






9. Kim Karr – bestselling author of Connected

Kim Karr



With a major in English, she wanted to teach at college level, but - as we all know; not everything comes true – it wasn’t meant to be. She worked as a project manager, until she had to quit in order to take care of her family. Now she works part-time with her husband.




10. Sarah Dessen  – NYT Bestselling author of Along The Ride

Sarah Dessen



She worked at a children’s shoe store while in highschool, at Greensboro, North Carolina. While launching her writing career, she waitressed at the Flying Burito Restaurant. Following the publication of Dreamland, she taught at the University Of North Carolina.




11. Tammara Webber – NYT and USA Today Bestselling author of : Easy,Breakable and Sweet.

Tammara Webber


Prior her writing career, she was an undergraduate academic advisor, economics tutor, planetarium office manager, radiology call center rep and also worked in a tanning salon.




12. Jojo Moyes – Bestselling author of Me Before You, The One Plus One, Silver Bay and Honeymoon in Paris



After winning a bursary financed by The Independent newspaper to study journalism at City University and subsequently worked for The Independent for 10 years. In 2001 she became a full time novelist.





13. Gayle Forman – Bestselling author of  If I Stay


Gayle Forman



She worked for Seventeen Magazine, later becoming a freelance journalist – writing for magazines like : Details, Jane, Glamour, The Nation, Elle, Budget Travel and Cosmopolitan.




14. Holly Black – Bestselling author of : Modern Faerie Tale series, The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, The Curse Worker and Welcome to Bordertown.

Holly Black

Prior her writing career, she worked as a production editor on medical journals, including The Journal Of Pain while studying at Rutgers University. Holly, edited and contributed to the role-playing magazine D8 in 1996.



15. Sigal Ehrlich – bestselling author of Retrace, Layers and Leaving Me Behind



Sigal Ehrlich


Before starting her writing career, she used to work in a Hi-Tech company, in the one of the most funny parts of it : Customer Relations.





16. Corey Ann Haydu – Bestselling author of Life by Committee, OCD Lovestory, Making Pretty and Rules For Stealing The Stars 


Corey Ann Haydu

Before starting her writing career she teached – still does – Young Adult Novel Writing with Mediabistro.




17.  Sara Shepard – Bestselling author of the Pretty Little Liars book series. 

Sara Shepard



After achieving her MFA in Creative Writing from Brooklyn College in 2004, and a Bachelor Of Science from New York Univeristy in1999, she worked at Time, Inc. Custom Publishing and produced lifestyle magazines for corporate clients. She started ghostwriting as a freelancer in 2002 and writing her own books in 2005.





18. Patricia Briggs – Bestselling author  of Iron Kissed

Patricia Briggs




Prior her full-time writing career, she worked for a while as a substitute teacher. 






19. Alisha Costanzo – author of  BLOOD PHOENIX: REBIRTH, BLOOD PHOENIX: CLAIMED, and LOVING RED, and co-editor of DISTORTED. UNDERWATER, her new anthology, is undergoing serious edits for its 2016 release.


Alisha Costanzo    


After achieving her MFA in Creative Writing from the University Of Central Oklahoma, she remained there,  teaching English.



20. Penny Reid – author of Neanderthal Seeks Human, Attraction and Truth or Beard


Penny Reid

She works in the biotech industry as a researcher.

















Published by Cristina Piciu