The World of Jack London
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The First Story Written for Publication
Jack London Ranch,
Glen Ellen, Sonoma County, California
August 1, 1922
Typhoon Off the Coast of Japan, is the first story ever written by Jack London for publication. At the age of seventeen he had returned from his deep-water voyage in the sealing schooner Sophie Sutherland, and was working thirteen hours a day for forty dollars a month in an Oakland, California, jute mill. The San Francisco Call offered a prize of twenty-five dollars for the best written descriptive article. Jack's mother, Flora London, remembering that he had excelled in his school "compositions," urged him to enter the contest by recalling some happening of his travels. Grammar school, years earlier, had been his sole disciplined education. But his wide reading, worldly experience, and extraordinary powers of observation and correlation, enabled him to command first prize. It is notable that the second and third awards went to students at California and Stanford universities.
Read Typhoon Off the Coast of Japan
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