Top 10 Quotes: How Charles Dickens Found Success Through Bad Experiences

Is it possible for one writer to produce so many literary masterpieces? Charles Dickens proved that it is. Works such as Oliver Twist, Great Expectations, A Tale of Two Cities, A Christmas Carol and more were all written by Charles Dickens. These stories shaped so much of our literature today that their titles alone can spark conversations. His work has been studied and scrutinized in countless English classes for many years well after his death. He was a “well-loved and prolific British author of numerous works that are now considered classics.” But of course, Dickens’ life did not start off with so much success.

Most successful people have had early childhood struggles as Charles Dickens had. He was the second of eight children, and despite both of his parent’s efforts and dreams, their family remained poor. Charles’ family moved from house to house until their financial situation became dire. His father was sent to prison for his debts in 1824, when Charles was 12 years old, leaving Charles in a vulnerable position. These instances took a huge toll on his life and career path. He could no longer go to school because of his family’s financial situation, and was forced to work at a boot-blacking factory alongside the River Thames. Dickens always looked back at that experience with disdain and wondered “how [he] could so easily cast away at such a young age.” Dickens carried strong feelings of abandonment and felt that he was “betrayed by the adults who were supposed to take care of him.” These sentiments would later appear in his literary works, such as the renowned classical text, Oliver Twist.

Dickens’ life reaffirmed specific notions about success. He illustrated how bad situations and early struggles in life can later manifest into something great. There is a plethora of writers that point to their early struggles in life as inspiration for their work. Similar to his novel Great Expectations, which follows the protagonist on his lifelong journey to moral development, Dickens’ writing career was one lifelong journey of finding success through bad experiences. After his death, Scottish satirical writer Thomas Carlyle perfectly described Dickens’ passing as “an event worldwide, a unique of talents suddenly extinct.” Here are 10 quotes by Charles Dickens:


“We forge the chains we wear in life.” – Charles Dickens


“Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and a touch that never hurts.” – Charles Dickens


“No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.” – Charles Dickens


“Reflect upon your present blessings — of which every man has many — not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.” – Charles Dickens


“A loving heart is the truest wisdom.” – Charles Dickens


“It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to, than I have ever known.” – Charles Dickens


“The pain of parting is nothing to the joy of meeting again.” – Charles Dickens


“Charity begins at home and justice begins next door.” – Charles Dickens


“This is a world of action, and not for moping and droning in” – Charles Dickens


“I only ask to be free. The butterflies are free.” – Charles Dickens

Author Bio: Idil Dahir

Idil Dahir is a freelance writer and editor living in Toronto, Ontario. She is a recent graduate of the University of Toronto in which she completed a specialist program in English. Idil enjoys everything from Films, TV Shows, Sports, Novels, and Comic Books. She is currently working on her fantasy novel as well as her freelance work. If you would like to contact Idil you can reach her at: