Orison Swett Marden
Marden was born in Thornton Gore, New Hampshire to Lewis and Martha Marden. When he was three years old, his mother died at the age of 22, leaving Orison and his two sisters in the care of their father, a farmer, hunter, and trapper. When Orison was seven years old, his father died from injuries incurred while in the woods, and the children were shuttled from one guardian to another, with Orison working as a "hired boy" to earn his keep. Inspired by an early self-help book by the Scottish author Samuel Smiles, which he found in an attic, Marden set out to improve himself and his life circumstances. He persevered in advancing himself and graduated from Boston University in 1871. He later graduated from Harvard with an M.D. in 1881 and an LL.B. degree in 1882. He also studied at the Boston School of Oratory (Emerson College) and Andover Theological Seminary.
Marden supported himself during his college years by working in a hotel and afterward by becoming the owner of several hotels and a resort. Financial reversals ended that career, and in 1893, he was again working as a hotel manager, in Chicago, during the time that the World's Columbian Exposition was attracting visitors to that city from all over the world. It was during this period that he began to write down his philosophical ideas, with the goal of inspiring others as he had been inspired by Samuel Smiles.
In addition to Smiles, Marden cited as influences on his thinking the works of Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. and Ralph Waldo Emerson, both of whom were influential forerunners of what, by the 1890s, was called the New Thought Movement.
Pushing to the Front (1894) 
According to Brian Tracy’s book “Flight Plan”, during the deep depression of the 1890’s, Marden lost the hotel he owned. With little money, but with lots of time on his hands, he decided to write a book. He took a room above a livery stable and worked night and day. The evening he finished the final page, tired and hungry, he decided to go out to a small café for dinner. While he was dining, the livery stable caught fire and burned to the ground. His entire manuscript – more than 1,000 pages, an entire year’s work – was destroyed by flames in a matter of minutes.
He was overwhelmed and heartbroken. But he picked himself up and started all over again. A year later, he had re-written his manuscript. He then tried to get it published. But with the depression being in its third year, no one was interested. He moved to Chicago, found a job and met someone who happened to know a publisher. The publisher read his book and said, “This is exactly what people should be reading in the middle of the depression or at any other time”.
“Pushing to the Front” became the single greatest runaway classic in the history of personal development books at that time. People like Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, Harvey Firestone and J.P. Morgan cited it as inspiration. Marden went on to write more than twenty other inspirational books.
“There are two essential requirements for success. The first is “go-at-it-iveness” and the second is “stick-to-it-iveness” - Orison Swett Marden
New Thought career 
Marden's first book, Pushing to the Front, was published in 1894. He followed this with several more volumes on the subjects of success, the cultivation of will-power, and positive thinking. He founded Success Magazine in 1897 and was also a regular contributor to Elizabeth Towne's New Thought magazine Nautilus during the first two decades of the 20th century. During this time he served as the first president of the early New York City-based New Thought organization League for the Larger Life.
Like many proponents of the New Thought philosophy, Marden believed that our thoughts influence our lives and our life circumstances. He said, "We make the world we live in and shape our own environment." Yet although he is best known for his books on financial success, he always emphasized that this would come as a result of cultivating one's personal development: "The golden opportunity you are seeking is in yourself. It is not in your environment; it is not in luck or chance, or the help of others; it is in yourself alone."
Marden died in 1924 at the age of 74.
- Pushing to the Front or, Success Under Difficulties. 1894.
- How to Succeed or, Stepping-Stones to Fame and Fortune. 1896.
- Architects of Fate or, Steps to Success and Power. 1895.
- The Secret of Achievement. 1898.
- Cheerfulness as a Life Power. 1899.
- Character: the grandest thing in the world. 1899.
- The Hour of Opportunity. 1900.
- Winning out. 1900.
- An Iron Will. 1901.
- Every Man a King. 1906
- The Optimistic Life. 1907
- Do It to a Finish. 1909.
- Peace, Power, and Plenty. 1909.
- Be Good to Yourself. 1910.
- Eclectic School Readings: Stories from Life, A Book for Young People.
- How to Get What You Want. 1917.
- The Man You Long to Be article printed in Nautilus January 1918.
- Ambition. 1919.
- Prosperity - How to Attract It. 1922.
- La Obra Maestra (The masterpiece of life).
- The Art of Living. 1917.
- http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/o/orisonswet157890.html Quotations of Orison Swett Marden. Retrieved October 2, 2007.
- http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/o/orisonswet101086.html Quotations of Orison Swett Marden. Retrieved October 2, 2007.
- The Progressive BusinessMan Published February 1913.
- Autobiography of Orison Swett Marden. 'The Life Story of Orison Swett Marden, 1925', by Margaret Connolly. Free to read online.
- Books by Orison Swett Marden
- Biography of Orison Swett Marden
- Works by Orison Swett Marden at Project Gutenberg
- Orison Swett Marden. The Miracle of Right Thought.1910 Free e-book online
- Orison Swett Marden. Pushing To The Front or, Success Under Difficulties. 1894. Free e-book download
- Orison Swett Marden. Cheerfulness as a Life Power. 1899. Free e-book download
- Orison Swett Marden. Prosperity - How to Attract It.1922. Free e-book download
- Quotes by Orison Swett Marden
- Quotations by Orison Swett Marden
- Review of Marden's classic Pushing To The Front
- Orison Swett Marden. How To Get What You Want. 1917 E-book download