Female Professionals

The Best Female Authors of All Time

List Rules
Vote up the greatest women writers based on their works in all genres, including short fiction, novels, poetry, non-fiction, and essays.
Some of the most powerful, influential women in history were authors, writers, and poets. What better way to make your point, affect the world around you, inspire other women to fight for their dreams. or even just simply put your stamp on the world than to have your writing published. Who are the best female authors in history?
 
The female authors featured on this list have gone down in history as the absolute greatest women writers. Many movies have been made either from some of their works, or even based on their lives and what shaped them as a writer. This list of the best female authors has been ranked by the community. Vote up the female authors you think are the best and see how your favorites rank.
 
This list features the best female authors of all time, many of whom wrote best-selling books that are still considered classics today including, Gertrude Stein, Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte,  Agatha Christie, Maya Angelou, Flannery O’Connor, and Kate Chopin. If the female writer you think is the best isn't already on the list, add her below.
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Ranked by
  • Emily Brontë
    1
    Wuthering Heights
  • Jane Austen
    2
    Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Mansfield Park
  • Emily Dickinson
    3
    The complete poems, The letters, Acts of Light: The World of Emily Dickinson
  • Maya Angelou
    4
    I Shall Not Be Moved, The Heart of a Woman, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
  • Agatha Christie
    5
    A Witness for the Prosecution, And Then There Were None
  • Charlotte Brontë
    6
    Jane Eyre, Emma
  • Sappho
    7
    Sappho, the poems and fragments, Woman from child (Sappho)
  • Margaret Atwood
    8
    The Year of the Flood, The Circle Game, Cat's Eye
  • Mary Shelley
    9
    Frankenstein, Falkner
  • Virginia Woolf
    10
    Mrs. Dalloway, To the Lighthouse, A Room of One's Own
  • Harper Lee
    11
    To Kill a Mockingbird
  • George Eliot
    12
    Middlemarch: A Study of Provincial Life, Silas Marner, Daniel Deronda
  • Toni Morrison
    13
    Jazz, The Bluest Eye, Song of Solomon
  • Shirley Jackson
    14
    The Haunting of Hill House, The Lottery
  • Louisa May Alcott
    15
    Jo's Boys, Little Women, Little Men
  • Flannery O'Connor
    16
    Wise Blood, A Good Man Is Hard to Find
  • Daphne du Maurier
    17
    Rebecca, The Birds, Jamaica Inn
  • Elizabeth Barrett Browning
    18
    Sonnets from the Portuguese, Poems and Letters, New Poems by Robert Browning and elizabeth Barrett Browning
    Many don't know about her excellent book-length poem Aurora Leigh.
  • Ursula K. Le Guin
    19
    Always Coming Home, The Day Before the Revolution
  • Simone de Beauvoir
    20
    She Came to Stay, The Mandarins, The Second Sex
  • Edith Wharton
    21
    Ethan Frome, The Age of Innocence
  • Laura Ingalls Wilder
    22
    Little House in the Big Woods, The Long Winter, Little Town on the Prairie
  • Amy Tan
    23
    The Joy Luck Club, The Joy Luck Club, The Hundred Secret Senses
  • Margaret Mitchell
    24
    Gone with the Wind, Lost Laysen, Talking Business - French
  • Alice Munro
    25
    Runaway, The View From Jupiter