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Carson McCullers was born in Columbus, Georgia, on February 19, 1917. She died at age fifty in Nyack, New York, on September 29, 1967. A promising pianist, she had hoped to enroll at the Juilliard School of Music when she was seventeen, but when she arrived in New York, she attended writing classes at Columbia University instead. In December 1936 her first story, "Wunderkind," was published in "Story" magazine. That winter she began work on "The Mute," which would become her enduring masterpiece, "The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter." (Publisher Provided) Carson McCullers was born Lula Carson Smith on February 19, 1917 in Columbus, Georgia. At the age of seventeen, desiring to become a famous concert pianist, she went to New York City to attend the Julliard School of Music. Her family sacrificed and raised money for her tuition to go to Julliard, but she lost all of her money when she left her pocketbook on the subway. Unable to tell her family what had happened, she took writing classes at Columbia University and New York University from 1935-1936. Her first novel, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, was published in 1940. Her other novels included Reflections in a Golden Eye, The Ballad of the Sad Café, The Member of the Wedding, and Clock Without Hands. With the help of Tennessee Williams, The Member of the Wedding was adapted into a play, which won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award in 1950. She died from a stroke and subsequent brain hemorrhage on September 29, 1967at the age of 50. (Bowker Author Biography)
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Carson McCullers reinvented herself after leaving home at age 17 to study at the Juilliard School of Music in Manhattan. Something happened to make her lose the money and she never attended the school. Instead, she worked and took night classes at university. Her published writing began to appear in 1936. She suffered throughout her life from serious illness, including rheumatic fever and several strokes. By the age of 31, her left side was completely paralyzed. Her work, usually set in the South of her birth, often focused on people seen as misfits and outcasts.
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