20 Famous Authors’ Adorable School Photos


It’s back to school season, which means new books, new classes and yes, new photos, yearbook and otherwise. But don’t worry — your favorite authors had to go through it too. To celebrate the new season of scholarship, we’ve collected a few pictures of some of our favorite authors’ school photos, ranging from proud snapshots of the first day of kindergarten to writers-to-be goofing off behind a desk to posed high school graduation photos. Check out our collection, find out which author was voted class clown, and ruminate on what your own education might lead to after the jump.

Ernest Hemingway, age 6, with his sisters Ursula and Marcelline on their first day of grammar school, 1905. Image via the Hemingway Archives.

Margaret Atwood’s yearbook photo from Leaside High School. Photo via.

J.D. Salinger’s yearbook photo from Valley Forge Military Academy, 1936. Photo via J. D. Salinger: A Life .

Lois Lowry, age five, and her elder sister, on the first day of kindergarten and second grade, respectively, 1942. Photo via Teaching Books.

Sylvia Plath’s high school graduation photo, 1950. Photo via the Sylvia Plath Forum.

A pre-recluse Thomas Pynchon in an undated high school yearbook photo. Photo via The New York Times .

Allen Ginsberg goofing off in his Paterson, New Jersey high school, 1942. Photo c. Allen Ginsberg Estate via the Allen Ginsberg Project.

Jorge Luis Borges and his sister Nora attending high school in Geneva, Switzerland, c. 1914-1918. Photo via The Modern Word.

Jack Kerouac’s yearbook photo from Horace Mann. Photo via The Riverdale Press.

At far left, Lorain High School senior class treasurer Toni Morrison (aka Chloe Wofford), 1949. Image via.

An early school photo of Stephen King. Image via.

Madeleine L’Engle’s Smith College yearbook picture, 1941. Image via.

Kurt Vonnegut Jr.’s senior yearbook photo, 1940. Image via.

Angela Carter (middle row, third from the left) and her classmates in high school. Image c. Streatham and Clapham High School via the Guardian.

Philip Roth at age 16 in the 1950 Weequahic High School Yearbook. Photo via Newark Memories.

From Patti Smith’s 1964 high school yearbook. Photo via.

Samuel Beckett (second from the left) with his school cricket team in 1920. Photo courtesy of Portora Royal School via the Guardian

Maurice Sendak in Brooklyn’s Lafayette High School yearbook. Image via.

Flannery O’Connor (right) with a classmate at Georgia College. Image via.

Tom Wolfe as a senior at St. Christopher’s School in Richmond, Virginia. Photo via.