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October 18 Writer Birthdays

McMillan - Waiting To Exhale
October 18 Writer Birthdays

  • 1569 - Giambattista Marino, influential Italian poet; founder of the school of Marinism, characterized by the use of extravagant conceits.

  • 1638 - Lars (Lasse) Johnstown, Swedish baroque poet, usually referred to by his pseudonym, Lucidor.

  • 1701 - Charles le Beau, French historian, writer, and educator.

  • 1741 - Pierre Ambroise François Choderlos de Laclos, French general and controversial author, best known for his epistolary novel Les Liaisons Dangereuses (Dangerous Liaisons), which was considered scandalous in his day; he also invented the modern artillery shell.

  • 1777 - Heinrich von Kleist, German dramatist, poet, and novelist.

  • 1785 - Thomas Love Peacock, author, poet, and essayist.

  • 1865 - Logan Pearsall Smith, American-born essayist and critic who became a British citizen; he was especially known for his aphorisms and epigrams.

  • 1889 - Fannie Hurst, novelist who frequently wrote about women as the subject of economic and social discrimination.

  • 1894 - H.L. Davis, Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist and poet.

  • 1895 - Raymond Brulez, Flemish author and broadcaster, known for his skepticism.

  • 1897 - Isabel Briggs Myers, American psychological theorist and author, best known for the Myers Briggs Type Indicator, a personality assessment she created with her mother, Katharine Cook Briggs.

  • 1948 - Ntozake Shange, American poet and playwright whose work explores issues of race and feminism.

  • 1950 - Wendy Wasserstein, Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright and professor.

  • 1951 - Terry McMillan, bestselling American novelist, known for books with strong African-American heroines.

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October 17 Writer Birthdays

Miller - Death Of A Salesman
October 17 Writer Birthdays

  • 1711 - Jupiter Hammon, poet and slave who was the first African American to be a published writer in the United States.

  • 1719 - Jacques Cazotte, French author of romantic fiction, poety, and children's stories.

  • 1725 - John Wilkes, outspoken English journalist and politician.

  • 1813 - Georg Büchner, German playwright, poet, and author who was also a revolutionary, a natural scientist, and the brother of physician and philosopher Ludwig Büchner.

  • 1827 - Samuel Ringgold Ward, African-American abolitionist who escaped slavery to become a minister and author.

  • 1864 - Elinor Glyn, British novelist and scriptwriter whose romantic fiction was considered scandalous in her day.

  • 1898 - Simon Vestdijk, Dutch doctor who gave up medicine and became instead a novelist, poet, and essayist; he is considered one of the Netherlands' most important 20th century writers.

  • 1903 - Nathanael West (born Nathan Weinstein) American novelist, screenwriter, and satirist.

  • 1915 - Arthur Miller, Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright, essayist, novelist, and screenwriter; his second wife was actress Marilyn Monroe.

  • 1917 - Sumner Locke Elliott, Australian-born American novelist, screenwriter, playwright, and actor.

  • 1920 - Miguel Delibes, Spanish novelist, journalist, and newspaper editor.

  • 1930 - Jimmy Breslin, Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist, columnist, and author.

  • 1946 - Drusilla Modjeska, English-born Australian writer and editor whose work often explores the boundaries between fiction and nonfiction.

  • 1948 - Robert Jordan (real name James Oliver Rigney Jr.), popular American author of epic fantasy, best known for the "Wheel of Time" series; he is one of several writers to have written original Conan the Barbarian novels; he also wrote historical fiction under pseudonym Reagan O'Neal, a western as Jackson O'Reilly, and dance criticism as Chang Lung. Additionally, he ghostwrote an "international thriller" that is still believed to have been written by someone else.

  • 1950 - Wally Lamb, bestselling American author and professor; he is best known for his novels She's Come Undone and I Know This Much Is True, both of which were selected for Oprah's Book Club.

  • 1970 - Ariel Levy, staff writer at The New Yorker magazine and author of the book Female Chauvinist Pigs: Women and the Rise of Raunch Culture; her work has appeared in The Washington Post, The New Yorker, Vogue, Slate, and the New York Times


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Book Review: Perennials, by Julie Cantrell

October 17th, 2018 (02:06 am)

First of all, Cantrell knows how to turn a phrase. Her language is lyrical, her descriptions evocative. And I loved the Oxford, Mississippi, setting; it makes me want to visit there. But as much as I enjoyed some aspects of this book, overall it fell flat, mostly because many of the characters drove me crazy.

Fisher was too good to be true, like the heroine's love interest in a Lifetime TV movie. Lovey's parents seem to have stepped out of a Hallmark card. I liked them -- how could I not? But they were so full of preaching and platitudes. And Marian, except for her advanced age, is a stock-character holistic yoga spiritualist, full of slogans out of a New Age self-help book -- though I should add that the fact that she was in her 90s was out-of-the-ordinary enough to make her more interesting. The Dragon Lady Boss had no redeeming characteristics whatsoever. If she'd had a mustache, she would have been twirling it.

The most interesting character was Lovey (Eva) herself, and she felt more real and nuanced than anyone else in the book, by far. Her complexity was what kept me reading even as I rolled my eyes at some of the people around her.

So many plot twists I saw coming from chapters away. Could anyone read the opening passages when Lovey and Fisher are children and not know, from the moment he defends her against her mean sister, that they will end up together? And the instant I read that Marian wanted to open a free New Age Yoga center but needed a building, I knew how Lovey would resolve that problem.

The book is so preachy, with characters spontaneously erupting in sermons -- both Christian and New Age -- in a way that I found hard to believe. And the heavy-handed metaphor of the garden was repeated over and over again. OK, we got it the first time. Maybe it would have meant more to me if I liked gardening.

The end ties everything up neatly -- too neatly -- with "bad" characters abruptly reforming or just getting out of the way, and adversaries forgiving each other and becoming friends.

Overall, I felt the author let her own world view and religious beliefs get in the way of telling the story. I really wanted to love this book. But as hard as I tried, I just couldn't do it.

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October 14 Writer Birthdays

Lenski - Strawberry Girl
October 14 Writer Birthdays

  • 1644 - William Penn, English real-estate entrepreneur, philosopher, and founder of Pennsylvania; he wrote in favor of democracy and religious freedom, and was noted for his good relations and successful treaties with the Lenape Indians; he was imprisoned in the Tower of London for his controversial religious pamphlets.

  • 1867 - Masaoka Shiki (pen-name of Masaoka Noboru), Japanese poet, author, and literary critic.

  • 1888 - Katherine Mansfield, New Zealand-born British modernist short-story writer and poet.

  • 1893 - Lois Lenski, Newbery Medal-winning bestselling American author and illustrator of books for children and young adults.

  • 1894 - E.E. Cummings, American poet, painter, essayist, author, and playwright; he is considered one of the most innovative poets of the 20th century.

  • 1906 - Hannah Arendt, German political theorist; a Jew, she escaped Europe during the Holocaust and later became an American citizen; her works deal with the nature of power, politics, democracy, and totalitarianism.

  • 1949 - Katha Pollitt, American feminist poet, essayist, and critic.

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October 13 Writer Birthdays

October 13 Writer Birthdays

  • 1902 - Arnaud "Arna" Wendell Bontemps, African-American poet, novelist and librarian who was a noted member of the Harlem Renaissance movement.

  • 1903 - Takiji Kobayashi (小林 多喜二), Japanese author of proletarian literature, best known for his 1929 short novel Kanikōsen (Crab Cannery Ship) about the movement to unionize fishing workers; two years later, at the age of 29, he was arrested and allegedly tortured to death by police.

  • 1913 - Igor Torkar, pen name of Boris Fakin, a Slovenian writer, playwright, and poet, best known for literary descriptions of Communist repression in Yugoslavia after World War II.

  • 1916 - Galina Shatalova (Галина Сергеевна Шаталова), Turkmenistan-born Russian neurosurgeon and author of many popular books on health, nutrition, and healthy lifestyles, best known for her Natural Health Improvement System, which incorporates a very low calorie diet; she was chief of the Astronauts Training Sector of the Institute of Space & Aviation Biology. (She lived to be 95 years old.)

  • 1929 - Richard Howard, Pulitzer Prize-winning American poet.

  • 1862 - Mary Kingsley, English ethnographer who wrote primarily about her travels in West Africa.

  • 1867 - Guy Newell Boothby, prolific Australian novelist and writer who lived mainly in England and is noted for sensational fiction published in magazines; his best known creations are the Dr. Nikola series (about an occultist criminal mastermind who is a Victorian forerunner to Fu Manchu) and Pharos (a tale of Gothic Egypt, mummies' curses, and supernatural revenge); Rudyard Kipling was his friend and mentor, and his books were remembered with affection by George Orwell.

  • 1890 - Conrad Richter, Pulitzer Prize-winning American fiction writer, best known for his young-adult classic, The Light in the Forest.

  • 1938 - Dalene Matthee, bestselling South African author, known for her four Forest Novels, written in and around the Knysna Forest.

  • 1950 - Mollie Katzen, American chef and author of the popular Moosewood series of vegetarian cookbooks.

  • 1957 - Chris Carter, American television and film producer, director, and writer, best known as creator of The X-Files.

  • 1963 - Colin Channer, Jamaican author of novels, short stories, and poetry that focus on his home country; he is sometimes called "Bob Marley with a pen."


Boothby - The Dr. Nikola Mysteries.jpg

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October 12 Writer Birthdays

Petry - The Street
October 12 Writer Birthdays

  • 1875 - Aleister Crowley, an English occultist who wrote books on the subject; he was also a novelist, poet, painter, and magician.

  • 1896 - Eugenio Montale, Nobel Prize-winning Italian writer, poet, editor, and translator who is considered the greatest Italian lyric poet since Giacomo Leopardi.

  • 1904 - Lester Dent, American pulp fiction author, best known as creator of the character Doc Savage.

  • 1908 - Paul Engle, American poet, editor, teacher, literary critic, novelist, and playwright who is best known as the director of the Iowa Writer's Workshop.

  • 1908 - Anne Petry, American author who became the first black woman writer with sales topping a million copies (for her novel The Street).

  • 1910 - Robert Fitzgerald, British poet, educator, journalist, author, and translator whose translations of the Greek classics became the standard texts.

  • 1912 - Alice Childress, American playwright, actor, and author of young adult literature.

  • 1921 - Logie Bruce-Lockhart, British writer, headmaster, Scottish rugby player, and author of books about fishing.

  • 1925 - Robin Skelton, British poet, professor, anthologist, professor and editor who was a practicing Wiccan and often wrote on neopagan religions, but who was best known as an authority on Irish literature.


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October 11 Writer Birthdays


October 11 Writer Birthdays

  • 1720 - Elizabeth Griffith (sometimes spelled Griffiths), Welsh-born Irish dramatist, fiction writer, essayist, and actress, best known for her 1775 edition of Shakespeare's comedies.

  • 1854 - Adela Zamudio (full name Paz Juana Plácida Adela Rafaela Zamudio Ribero), Bolivian poet, feminist, and educator who sometimes used the pen name Soledad. Considered the most famous Bolivian poet, she also founded the country's feminist movement.

  • 1876 -  Gertrud von Le Fort (full name Gertrud Auguste Lina Elsbeth Mathilde Petrea Freiin von Le Fort), German Baroness and writer of novels, poems, and essays.

  • 1885 - François Mauriac, Nobel Prize-winning French novelist, critic, poet, playwright, and journalist known for "the deep spiritual insight and the artistic intensity with which he has in his novels penetrated the drama of human life."

  • 1922 - G.C. Edmondson (full name "José Mario Garry Ordoñez Edmondson y Cotton"), under-appreciated Mexican-born science-fiction author who also wrote westerns; he also published under several pseudonyms, including Kelly P. Gast, J. B. Masterson, and Jack Logan; he spoke six languages and also worked as a translator.

  • 1925 - Elmore Leonard, American novelist, short-story writer, and screenwriter who started out writing westerns but is better known for his bestselling thrillers; many of his novels have been made into movies.

  • 1926 - Thích Nhất Hạnh, Vietnamese Buddhist monk, teacher, author, poet, and peace activist who lived for many years as an exile in France.

  • 1929 - Russell Freedman, Newbery Medal-winning American children's author and biographer, reporter, and editor.

  • 1932 - Saul Friedländer, Pulitzer Prize-winning Israeli/American historian, nonfiction author, and professor.

  • 1935 - Daniel Quinn, American novelist, fabulist, cultural critic, and publisher of education texts; he is known for his environmentalist slant but was critical of the mainstream environmentalist movement and referred to his philosophy instead as "new tribalism".

  • 1936 - James M. McPherson, Pulitzer Prize-winning American Civil War historian known for his seminal nonfiction book on the Civil War, Battle Cry of Freedom.

  • 1954 - Vojislav Šešelj, (Serbian Cyrillic: Војислав Шешељ), Serbian writer, politician, and lawyer who founded the Serbian Radical Party.

  • 1962 - Anne Enright, Irish author who wrote novels, nonfiction, short stories, and essays; her novel The Gathering won the Man Booker Prize.

  • 1962 - Richard Paul Evans, American author known for his bestselling novel The Christmas Box, originally self-published when it failed to attract a publisher; after it became wildly popular, Simon & Schuster gave him a contract for the book, paying him a $4.2 million advance.

petrini1 [userpic]

October 9 Writer Birthdays


October 9 Writer Birthdays

  • 1854 - Mihaljo Pupin, Serbian-born physicist, chemist, and author who won a Pulitzer Prize for his autobiography; he was also a diplomat who helped determine the borders of Yugoslavia.

  • 1863 - Edward Bok, Dutch-born American magazine editor and author who won a Pulitzer for his autobiography.

  • 1892 - Ivo Andrić, Nobel Prize-winning Yugoslavian novelist and short-story writer.

  • 1899 - Bruce Catton, Pulitzer Prize-winning and National Book Award-winning American historian and journalist who wrote popular histories of the American Civil War, including A Stillness at Appomattox.

  • 1919 - Belva Plain, bestselling American novelist whose books were often multigenerational Jewish-American family sagas featuring strong-willed women.

  • 1937 - Joanna Hurwitz, American librarian and author of children's books.

  • 1941 - Jean-Jacques Schuhl, French author who won the Prix Goncourt for his novel Ingrid Caven, which was named for his partner, German actress and singer Ingrid Caven.

  • 1942 - Michael Palmer, American doctor and bestselling author of medical thrillers.

  • 1950 - Jody Williams, Nobel Prize-winning American writer, professor, and activist.

  • 1964 - Jacqueline Carey, American fantasy author, known for her "Kushiel" series set in the fictional land of Terre d'Ange.

  • 1964 - Guillermo del Toro, Mexican movie director and novelist, known for his books of fantasy, suspense, and horror.

  • 1976 - William Joseph Alexander, American author of young-adult fantasy novels whose first book won the National Book Award for Young People's Literature.

Plain - Daybreak
Hurwitz - The Cold & Hot Winter
Catton - Terrible Swift Sword

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We're Buying a House!

October 8th, 2018 (10:01 pm)

We're doing it. We've made an offer on a house and had it accepted. We've locked in an interest rate. Today we spent several hours walking through it with a home inspector.

The house is a Cape Cod in a wooded area just four blocks from here. It's bigger than our current one, which was really the whole point of moving. Unfortunately, it's not in Del Ray, despite all my efforts to stay in the neighborhood. But it's so nearby that I shouldn't complain.

We expect to close on it November 2. We want to have some painting done and some built-in shelves and cabinets added, but we should be able to move in by mid-November. We'll wait to put our current house on the market in January.

petrini1 [userpic]

October 5 Writer Birthdays

Diderot - Encyclopedie ou Dictionnaire Raisonne Des Sciences...
October 5 Writer Birthdays

  • 1703 - Jonathan Edwards, American theologian, educator, philosopher, scholar, and journalist whose writings helped shape the course of Protestantism; he is best known for his sermon about "sinners in the hands of an angry God."

  • 1713 - Denis Diderot, French philosopher, art critic, encyclopedia editor, and writer of the Enlightenment.

  • 1840 - John Addington Symonds, British historian and writer.

  • 1859 - Helen Churchill Candee, novelist, nonfiction author, and journalist who survived the sinking of the Titanic.

  • 1911 - Flann O'Brien, Irish novelist whose work combines folklore, poetry, and humor.

  • 1916 - Stetson Kennedy, American folklorist and author whose most famous work is an expose of the Ku Klux Klan.

  • 1917 - Magda Szabó, Hungarian writer who is considered Hungary's foremost woman novelist; she also wrote dramas, essays, studies, memoirs, and poetry.

  • 1922 - Bil Keane, American cartoonist best known for his long-running strip, "The Family Circus."

  • 1924 - Frederic Morton (pen name Fritz Mandelbaum), Austrian Jewish writer who emigrated to the U.S.

  • 1928 - Louise Fitzhugh, American author and illustrator of children's literature, notably Harriet the Spy.

  • 1936 - Václav Havel, playwright who in 1989 became the president of Czechoslovakia, contining on after the country became the Czech Republic.

  • 1943 - Michael Morpurgo, English author, poet, playwright, and librettist who is best known for his children's novels; he was a British Children's Laureate.

  • 1948 - Zoran Živković, Serbian author and professor who has written both fiction and nonfiction books; his fiction is known for fantasy and surrealism and has won him the World Fantasy Award.

  • 1949 - Bill James, American baseball writer and statistician.

  • 1951 - Edward P. Jones, American novelist, whose book The Known World won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2004.

  • 1952 - Clive Barker, English author known for his fantasy and horror fiction.

  • 1958 - Neil deGrasse Tyson, American astrophysicist, television personality, and science popularizer, author of books about space.

  • 1960 - David Shannon, American author and illustrator of children's books; his bestselling Caldecott Honor-winning picture book, No, David! was based on one he wrote when he was five years old in which every page showed a picture of him misbehaving and contained the only words he knew how to spell at the time: "No, David!"

  • 1963 - Nick Robinson, British political journalist and editor.

  • 1983 - Jesse Eisenberg, American actor and playwright.

O&apos;Brien - The Third PolicemanJones - The Known WorldShannon - No, DavidFitzhugh - Harriet the Spy

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October 4 Writer Birthdays

October 4 Writer Birthdays

  • 1862 - Edward Stratemeyer, American publisher and writer of children's fiction who created such well-known series as Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys, Tom Swift, and the Bobbsey Twins.

  • 1880 - Damon Runyon, American newspaperman and author, best known for his short stories about New York City.

  • 1892 - Robert Lawson, American author and illustrator of children's books, best known for his illustrations of other author's works.

  • 1904 - Rene (Mable Neighbour) Cloke, British children’s book illustrator and author

  • 1914 - Brendan Gill, American journalist and author whose best known work details his job at the New Yorker magazine.

  • 1916 - Julia Woolfook Cunningham, American children's book author who was a finalist for the National Book Award.

  • 1922 - Adam Hollanek, Polish novelist, poet, and science-fiction writer.

  • 1924 - Donald J. Sobol, children's book author, best known for the "Encyclopedia Brown" boy detective novels.

  • 1929 - John E. Mack, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, psychiatrist, and biographer.

  • 1937 - Jackie Collins, English novelist and younger sister of actress Joan Collins. All 28 of her novels have made the New York Times Bestseller list.

  • 1941 - Roy Blount Jr., American writer and humorist, and frequent panelist on NPR's Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me.

  • 1941 - Karen Cushman, American children's author, winner of the Newbery Award for The Midwife's Apprentice.

  • 1941 - Anne Rice, bestselling author of vampire fiction.

  • 1961 - Kazuki Takahashi, Japanese manga artist and writer, best known as the creator of the Yu-Gi-Oh! book series.

  • 1968 - Tim Wise, American anti-racism activist and writer.

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October 3 Writer Birthdays

October 3 Writer Birthdays

  • 1886 - Alain-Fournier (pseudonym for Henri Alban-Fournier), author whose one novel, Le Grand Meaulnes, is considered a classic of French literature.

  • 1900 - Thomas Wolfe, influential American novelist known for mixing highly original, poetic, and impressionistic prose with autobiographical writing; after Wolfe's death, author William Faulkner said that Wolfe may have had the best talent of their generation.

  • 1906 - Natalie Savage Carlson, Newbery Honor-winning children's book author.

  • 1916 - James Herriott, pen name for British veterinarian James Alfred Wight, who wrote the autobiographical book, All Creatures Great & Small and its sequels.

  • 1925 - Gore Vidal, National Book Award-winning American novelist, nonfiction author, essayist, screenwriter, playwright, politician, and political commentator.

  • 1928 - Alvin Toffler, American writer and futurist, known for his works discussing the digital revolution.

  • 1950 - John Patrick Shanley, Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning U.S. playwright, screenwriter, and director.

  • 1970 - Sara Zarr, American novelist whose first book, Story of a Girl, was a National Book Award finalist.

  • 1980 - Lindsey Kelk, British "chick lit" author and blogger.


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