April 12 Writer Birthdays

1573 – Jacques Bonfrère, Belgian professor, Jesuit priest, Biblical scholar, and leading commentator on the Old Testament.

1823 – Alexander Nikolayevich Ostrovsky, Russian realistic playwright said to have “almost single-handedly created a Russian national repertoire.” His dramas are among the most widely read and performed plays in Russia.

1904 – Francis Claud Cockburn, Chinese-born Anglo-Scots journalist who was a 2nd cousin to novelists Alec Waugh and Evelyn Waugh.

1905 – Inger Hagerup, Norwegian author, playwright, and poet; she is considered one of the greatest Norwegian poets of the 20th century.

1907 – Hardie Gramatky, painter, author, and illustrator of children’s books; Andrew Wyeth called him one of America’s 20 greatest watercolorists.

1916 – Beverly Cleary, popular American author of books for children and young adults, best known for Ramona the Pest and the other Ramona books.

1921 – Carol Emshwiller, Nebula Award-winning and World Fantasy Award-winning American author of science-fiction novels, fantasy, westerns, magic realism, and short stories.

1930 – Bryan Edgar Magee, British philosopher, broadcaster, politician, author, and poet; he is best known as a popularizer of philosophy.

1939 – Alan Ayckbourn, English playwright, author, and director.

1945 – Serge Schmemann, French-born writer, journalist, and editor.

1947 – Tom Clancy, American author of intricate espionage and military thrillers; creator of the character Jack Ryan.

1949 – Scott Turow, bestselling American author of legal fiction and nonfiction.

1952 – Gary Soto, American poet and young-adult fiction author.

1954 – Jon Krakauer, American author and mountaineer, known for his action-packed nonfiction books.

1957 – Tama Janowitz, American novelist and satirist.

1986 – Elise Parsley, American piano teacher and author/illustrator of children’s picture books.

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