This new collection of autobiographical pieces offers a fascinating insight into the life and philosophy of Mark Twain, author of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, and one of America's most celebrated writers. A must-have for all lovers of Mark Twain, this selection of his autobiographical writings opens a rare window onto the writer's life, particularly his early years. Born on November 30, 1835, in Florida, Missouri, Samuel Langhorne Clemens first used the pseudonym Mark Twain while a journalist in Nevada in 1863. When his first major book, "The Innocents Abroad", appeared six years later, he began what would become one of the most celebrated and influential careers in American letters. "Autobiographical Writings" will help readers know the author intimately and appreciate why, a century after his death, he remains so vital and appealing. This edition includes an introduction by R. Kent Rasmussen that summarizes modern scholarship on Twain. Mark Twain was born Samuel Langhorne Clemens on 30th November 1835, in Florida, Missouri. In 1853 he left home, earning a living as an itinerant type-setter, and four years later became an apprentice pilot on the Mississippi, a career cut short by the outbreak of the Civil War. For five years, as a prospector and a journalist, Clemens lived in Nevada and California. In February 1863 he first used the pseudonym 'Mark Twain' as the signature to a humorous travel letter. A trip to Europe and the Holy Land in 1867 became the basis of his first major book, "The Innocents Abroad" (1869). His numerous subsequent books include "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" (1876), "A Tramp Aborad" (1880), "The Prince and the Pauper" (1882), and his masterpiece, "The Adventures of Huckleberry Fin" (1885). He died on 21st April 1910. R. Kent Rasmussen is the author or editor of six books on Mark Twain and more than a dozen other books. He is best known for his award-winning "Mark Twain A to Z" (recently revised as the two-volume "Critical Companion to Mark Twain") and "The Quotable Mark Twain". He holds a doctorate in history from UCLA and currently works as a reference book editor in Southern California.