Humanities › History & Culture 7 Presidents Who Wrote Books Before They Were Elected Share Flipboard Email Print Hannelore Foerster / Getty Images History & Culture American History U.S. Presidents Basics Important Historical Figures Key Events Native American History American Revolution America Moves Westward The Gilded Age Crimes & Disasters The Most Important Inventions of the Industrial Revolution African American History African History Ancient History and Culture Asian History European History Genealogy Inventions Latin American History Medieval & Renaissance History Military History The 20th Century Women's History View More By Tom Murse Tom Murse is a former political reporter and current Managing Editor of daily paper "LNP," and weekly political paper "The Caucus," both published by LNP Media in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. our editorial process Tom Murse Updated December 16, 2020 Donald Trump is the 45th president of the United States, a reality-television star and real-estate developer who claims to be worth as much as $10 billion. He is also the author of more than a dozen books about business, including the 1987 book The Art of the Deal and 2004's The Way to the Top. Trump was not the first president to write a book before entering the White House. Here's a look at seven presidents who were published authors before they were elected to the White House. 01 of 07 Joe Biden Johnny Louis/WireImage/Getty Images Joe Biden published two books prior to his victory in the 2020 presidential election. In 2007, he published Promises to Keep, a memoir of his early life, his personal losses, and his career in the Senate. Ten years later, in 2017, Biden publised his second book, Promise Me, Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose. The memoir focused on a single year, beginning in late 2014, during which Biden worked on a number of demanding political projects, all while his son, Beau, was suffering from a malignant brain tumor with an uncertain prognosis. 02 of 07 Donald Trump Spencer Platt / Getty Images Donald Trump has written at least 15 books about business and golf. The most widely read and successful of his books is The Art of the Deal, published in 1987 by Random House. Trump receives annual royalties valued between $15,001 and $50,000 from sales of the book, according to federal records. He also receives $50,000 and $100,000 in income a year from sales of Time to Get Tough, published in 2011 by Regnery Publishing. Trump's other books include: Trump: Surviving at the Top, published in 1990 by Random HouseThe Art of the Comeback, published in 1997 by Random HouseThe America We Deserve, published in 2000 by Renaissance BooksHow to Get Rich, published in 2004 by Random HouseThink Like a Billionaire, published in 2004 by Random HouseThe Way to the Top, published in 2004 by Bill Adler BooksThe Best Real Estate Advice I Ever Received, published in 2005 by Thomas Nelson Inc. The Best Golf Advice I Ever Received, published in 2005 by Random HouseThink Big and Kick Ass, published in 2007 by HarperCollins PublishersTrump 101: The Way to Success, published in 2007 by John Wiley & SonsWhy We Want You to Be Rich, published in 2008 by Plata PublishingNever Give Up, published in 2008 by John Wiley & SonsThink Like a Champion, published in 2009 by Vanguard PressCrippled America: How to Make America Great Again, published in 2015 by Simon & Schuster 03 of 07 Barack Obama Jodi Hilton / Getty Images Barack Obama published Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance in 1995 after his graduation from law school and at the beginning of what would quickly become a high-profile political career. The memoir has been republished and is considered one of the most elegant autobiographies by a politician in modern history. Obama was first elected president in 2008 and won a second term in 2012. In 2020, Obama published the first of a planned two-part memoir. Titled A Promised Land, the book describes his political journey from his grassroots beginnings to the Senate and, eventually, to the White House. It includes personal anecdotes and reflections on several high-profile moments in his presidency, mixed with observations of the political world up to today. 04 of 07 Jimmy Carter Drew Angerer / Getty Images Jimmy Carter's autobiography Why Not the Best? was published in 1975. The book was considered a book-length advertisement for his successful run for president in the 1976 election. The Jimmy Carter Library & Museum described the book as a "means of letting voters know who he was and his sense of values." The title came from a question posed to Carter following his graduation from the Naval Academy: "Did you do your best?" Carter initially answered, "Yes, sir," but later amended his answer to, "No, sir, I didn't always do my best." Carter reminisced that he was never able to answer the follow-up question to his answer. "Why not?" 05 of 07 John F. Kennedy Central Press / Getty Images John F. Kennedy wrote the Pulitzer Prize-winning Profiles in Courage in 1954, while he was a U.S. Senate but on leave of absence from Congress to recover from back surgery. In the book, Kennedy writes about eight Senators whom he describes as showing "great courage under enormous pressure from their parties and their constituents," in the words of Kennedy's presidential library and museum. Kennedy was elected in the 1960 election, and his book is still considered one of the seminal works on political leadership in the United States. 06 of 07 Theodore Roosevelt Hulton Archive / Getty Images Theodore Roosevelt published The Rough Riders, a first-person account of his U.S. Volunteer Cavalry Regiment during the Spanish-American War, in 1899. Roosevelt became president after the assassination of President McKinley 1901 and was elected in 1904. 07 of 07 George Washington Public Domain George Washington's Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation wasn't actually published in book form until 1888, decades after his presidency concluded. But the nation's first president handwrote the 110 rules, likely copying them for handwriting practice from a list of maxims compiled by French Jesuits centuries earlier, before the age of 16, according to his presidential estate. Washington was elected president in 1789. His Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation remains in circulation.