Four famous British novelists who graduated from UK universities


Time and time again, British novelists and writers have taken the world by storm with their words. Be it William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, J.R.R Tolkien, Agatha Christie or Jane Austen; British authors continue to surprise the world. Is education a key factor in this? While studying subjects such as English Literature certainly helps, it is not absolutely vital.

E.L James

Born in London, as Erika Mitchell, (E.L James is her pen name), the English writer recently rose to fame as the author of ’50 Shades of Grey’. After graduating from Wycombe High School, she studied history at the University of Kent, and today her famous trilogy of books has sold over 100 million copies globally.

Ian McEwan

Born in Hampshire, England, Ian McEwan spent his childhood in a number of countries before returning to England at 12. After receiving his degree in English Literature from University of Sussex, McEwan finished his Master’s in Creative Writing from University of East Anglia. Featured in the ‘Top 50 British Writers since 1945’, McEwan began his writing journey in 1978 with The Cement Garden, and won the Booker prize in 1998 for Amsterdam.

J.K Rowling

J.K Rowling is a household name all over the world as the author of the Harry Potter series, the highest selling book
series in history. Born as Joanne Rowling in Gloucestershire, England, J.K Rowling and Robert Galbraith are her pen names. Rowling was originally rejected from the University of Oxford, but then went on to take a BA in French and Classics at the University of Exeter.

Julia Donaldson

Best known for her rhyming stories for children, including The Gruffalo and Room on the Broom, Julia Donaldson has published 184 works in total. The Gruffalo is the world’s 26th best-selling book and Donaldson was born in London before going on to study drama and French at the University of Bristol.

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