John Grisham Biography: Life, Career, Success & Wealth

Estimated read time 4 min read
BJTJ1, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Full NameJohn Ray Grisham Jr.
BirthdateFebruary 8, 1955
BirthplaceJonesboro, Arkansas
EducationB.S. Accounting, J.D.
ProfessionAuthor, former lawyer
Notable WorksA Time to Kill, The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Client, The Rainmaker, The Runaway Jury
Awards/HonorsHarper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction, Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction
Net Worth$350 million (estimated)
PhilanthropyGrisham supports various causes, including literacy programs, education, and legal defense funds.

John Grisham is a bestselling author, lawyer, and philanthropist from the United States. He was born on February 8, 1955, in Jonesboro, Arkansas, and grew up in Mississippi. Grisham attended Mississippi State University and later the University of Mississippi School of Law, where he earned his law degree.

Grisham practiced law for almost a decade before turning to writing full time. His first novel, “A Time to Kill,” was published in 1989 and tells the story of a young lawyer defending a black man accused of murder in the Deep South. However, it was his second novel, “The Firm,” that catapulted Grisham to international fame. Since then, he has published dozens of best-selling legal thrillers, including “The Pelican Brief,” “The Client,” “The Rainmaker,” and “The Runaway Jury.”

As of 2021, John Grisham’s net worth is estimated to be around $350 million. In addition to his success as a writer, Grisham has also been involved in various philanthropic efforts. He and his wife, Renee, founded the Rebuild The Coast Fund to help rebuild homes and churches destroyed by Hurricane Katrina, and they have also been involved in various educational initiatives.

Despite his success as an author, Grisham has remained humble and grounded. He has stated that his goal is to entertain readers and make them think, rather than to achieve literary acclaim. He also continues to be involved in the legal profession and has served as a member of various legal organizations.

In conclusion, John Grisham’s success as a writer has earned him a significant amount of wealth and allowed him to make a positive impact on the world through his philanthropic efforts.

Here’s a timeline of some significant events in John Grisham’s life:

  • February 8, 1955: John Grisham is born in Jonesboro, Arkansas
  • 1977: Graduates from Mississippi State University
  • 1981: Graduates from the University of Mississippi School of Law and begins practicing law in Southaven, Mississippi
  • 1989: Publishes his first novel, “A Time to Kill”
  • 1991: Publishes “The Firm,” which becomes a bestseller and is later adapted into a film
  • 1992: Publishes “The Pelican Brief,” which also becomes a bestseller and is later adapted into a film
  • 1996: Publishes “The Runaway Jury,” which is also later adapted into a film
  • 2000: Publishes “The Brethren”
  • 2001: Publishes “A Painted House”
  • 2003: Publishes “The King of Torts”
  • 2006: Publishes “The Innocent Man,” a non-fiction book about a wrongful conviction
  • 2009: Publishes “Ford County,” a collection of short stories
  • 2012: Publishes “The Racketeer”
  • 2017: Publishes “Camino Island”
  • 2020: Publishes “A Time for Mercy,” a sequel to “A Time to Kill”
  • As of 2021, John Grisham’s net worth is estimated to be around $350 million.

This timeline highlights some of the key events in John Grisham’s life and career, including his education, legal career, and the publication of many of his best-selling novels.

5 Interesting Facts:

  1. Before becoming a successful author, Grisham practiced law for nearly a decade in Southaven, Mississippi.
  2. His first novel, “A Time to Kill,” was initially rejected by publishers before finding a home and eventually becoming a bestseller.
  3. Grisham’s novels have been adapted into numerous films, including “The Firm,” “The Pelican Brief,” and “A Time to Kill.”
  4. He is an advocate for criminal justice reform and has used his platform to raise awareness about wrongful convictions and issues in the justice system.
  5. In addition to his legal thrillers, Grisham has also written non-fiction works, including “The Innocent Man” and “The Whistler.”


  1. “Writing is a solitary occupation. Family, friends, and society are the natural enemies of the writer. He must be alone, uninterrupted, and slightly savage if he is to sustain and complete an undertaking.”
  2. “I’m fascinated by the legal system, and I’ve spent a lot of time studying the mistakes that people make when they’re in trouble and don’t know anything about the law.”
  3. “If you don’t have the time to read, you don’t have the time or the tools to write.”
  4. “I can’t change the world; I can only report what I see and what I hear.”
  5. “I don’t write for an audience. I don’t think whether my book will sell millions of copies. I think only of telling the story I want to tell.”

You May Also Like

More From Author