Basic Information About Mary Higgins Clark
|Category||Celebrities › Authors|
|Professions||Writer, Novelist, Author|
|Date of birth||1927-12-24|
|Place of birth||The Bronx|
|Date of death||2020-01-31 (aged 92)|
|Nationality||United States of America|
|Social Media||↗︎ Wikipedia|
Net Worth Details
Mary Higgins Clark was a celebrated author of mystery and suspense who had a net worth of $140 million at the time of her death in 202. Mary Higgins Clark sold over 100 million books in her lifetime in the U.S. alone. Mary published 51 books, and each one was a bestseller in the U.S. and several European countries. Higgins Clark earned hundreds of millions of dollars in royalties and advances during her career and was frequently one of the highest-paid authors in the world. In 2011, Mary received a $64 million advance covering her next four books, equaling $16 million per book.
What is Mary Higgins Clark known for?
Mary Higgins Clark was renowned for her contributions to the mystery and suspense genre. Her novels captivated readers around the world with their gripping narratives, intriguing characters, and unexpected twists. She was often referred to as the “Queen of Suspense” and was famous for crafting stories that kept readers on the edge of their seats.
Early life and education
Mary Higgins Clark was born Mary Theresa Eleanor Higgins on December 24, 1927, in The Bronx, New York. She came from a humble background, with her family experiencing financial difficulties during the Great Depression. Despite these challenges, Mary’s passion for writing began at an early age. She wrote her first poem when she was just 7 years old and even composed short plays as a child.
Mary attended Saint Francis Xavier Grammar School and later earned a scholarship to study at Villa Maria Academy. It was during her time at Villa Maria Academy when her teachers recognized her talent for writing and encouraged her interest.
To support her family financially, Mary took on a job as a switchboard operator at the Shelton Hotel. However, after her brother’s untimely death, Mary no longer had to shoulder the financial burdens, thanks to her mother receiving a life pension from the Navy.
After finishing her education at Wood Secretarial School, Mary Higgins Clark embarked on a career that would eventually lead her to become one of the most successful authors of her time. She started working as a secretary in Remington Rand’s internal advertising division and later studied advertising and promotion at night school.
Her writing journey took an unexpected turn when she began writing catalog copy for Remington Rand and even modeled for their brochures alongside Grace Kelly, who would later become a star. Mary then worked as a flight attendant for Pan American Airlines. However, her marriage to Warren Clark in 1949 led her to give up her job.
Undeterred, she pursued writing and enrolled at New York University to study the craft. Her dedication paid off when her short story ‘Stowaway’ was published in ‘Extension Magazine’ in 1956. Although Mary faced personal tragedy after the sudden demise of her husband, she persevered and continued to write.
In the late 196s, Mary transitioned from writing short stories to novels at the suggestion of her agent. Her first novel, ‘Aspire to the Heavens,’ fictionalized the relationship between George and Martha Washington. However, it struggled initially but laid the groundwork for her future success.
In 1975, Mary gained widespread recognition with her second book, ‘Where are the Children?,’ a suspense novel that became a bestseller. This success propelled her career to new heights. Throughout the following decades, she continued to publish numerous best-selling novels that cemented her reputation as one of the leading authors in the genre.
In addition to her standalone novels, Mary Higgins Clark also co-authored books with her daughter Carol under the ‘Alvirah and Willy’ series, creating engaging mysteries that captivated readers.
Mary Higgins Clark passed away on January 31, 202, in Naples, Florida, at the age of 92. Her death was attributed to natural causes. Her passing marked the end of an era for fans of suspense literature.
Mary Higgins Clark’s impact on the literary world extends far beyond her immense popularity. She received numerous awards and honors throughout her career, showcasing her talent and contributions.
In 198, she was awarded France’s prestigious Grand Prix de Littérature Policière, and in 1999, she won the Deauville Film Festival Literary Award. Mary also received the Spirit of Achievement Award from Yeshiva University’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine and a Gold Medal in Education from the National Arts Club in 1994.
Her achievements continued to be recognized with an American Irish Historical Society Gold Medal of Honor (1993), a Horatio Alger Award (1997), a Bronx Legend Award (1999), and an Ellis Island Medal of Honor (2001). Mary Higgins Clark received 18 honorary doctorates from esteemed institutions.
In addition to her literary accolades, she served as the president of the Mystery Writers of America and the Chairman of the International Crime Congress. She was also a member of the Mystery Writers of America board of directors for many years.
Upon her induction as a Grand Master at the 55th Annual Edgar Allan Poe Awards, Simon & Schuster established the Mary Higgins Clark Award to honor suspense authors, perpetuating her legacy in the genre. Mary also received several notable awards for her charitable work and contributions to society.
Through her talent, Mary Higgins Clark not only entertained millions of readers but also left an indelible mark on the literary world. Her works will continue to captivate generations to come.