March 25: Mary Flannery born to Edward Francis and Regina Lucille Cline O'Connor in Savannah, Georgia
O'Connor moves to Milledgeville with her family and attends Peabody Girls High School, Milledgeville, Georgia. (Earns a High School Diploma)
O'Connor attends Georgia State College for Women (GSCW), Milledgeville, Georgia. (Earns a Bachelor of Arts in Social Science) During this time, she serves as an art editor of the campus newspaper The Colonnade and editor of the literary magazine The Corinthian.
Mary Flannery shortens her name to simply Flannery O'Connor.
O'Connor participates in the Writer's Workshop of the University of Iowa, supervised by Professor Paul Engle. She graduates with with a Master of Fine Arts. Also during this time, O'Connor begins work upon her first novel, Wise Blood.
O'Connor publishes her first piece of fiction entitled "The Geranium" in Accent.
O'Connor is awarded the Rinehart-Iowa Fiction Award for her short stories, a few of which would become chapters in Wise Blood. O'Connor completes her Master's Thesis, entitled The Geranium: A Collection of Short Stories. This collection includes the stories entitled "The Geranium," "The Barber," "Wildcat," "The Crop," "The Turkey," and "The Train."
March 1949: Due to controversy in the Yaddo community, O'Connor moves to a New York City apartment, only to move shortly thereafter to the Fitzgeralds' home in Ridgefield, Connecticut, where she continues work on Wise Blood.
December: O'Connor is diagnosed with disseminated lupus erythematosus, for which she received intensive treatment from Emory University Hospital of Atlanta.
Because of her illness, O'Connor moves to the family farm north of Milledgeville, named "Andalusia."
O'Connor's first novel, Wise Blood, is published by Harcourt, Brace & company of New York. O'Connor also receives a Kenyon Review fellowship. She completes "The Life You Save May Be Your Own" and "The River."
O'Connor's renowned short story, "The Life You Save May Be Your Own," is published in a collection entitled Prize Stories 1954: The O. Henry Awards.
O'Connor is reappointed the Kenyon Review fellow in January for her remarkable accomplishments in fictional literature.
June 6: O'Connor's collection of short stories, A Good Man Is Hard To Find and Other Stories is published by Harcourt, Brace & Company of New York. This marks O'Connor's first published short story collection and sells "unexpectedly well," with some 4,000 copies sold in three printings by September 1955.
O'Connor receives the Georgia Writers Association Literary Achievement Award. A Good Man Is Hard To Find is published in paperback by New American Library.
O'Connor receives the American Academy of Arts and Letters Grant of $1,000. O'Connor's short story entitled "Greenleaf" wins the O. Henry Award and is honored as the Best American Short Story of 1957. O'Connor's alma mater, the Georgia State College for Women, awards her the Alumnae Achievement Award. She begins working on a novel, tentatively entitling it The Violent Bear It Away. Also, a film adaptation of O'Connor's story "The Life You Save May Be Your Own" starring Gene Kelly is released for television.