May 21 Writer Birthdays

1688 – Alexander Pope, English poet and translator best known for his use of satirical verse; he is considered one of the foremost poets of his time.

1901 – Suzanne Lilar, Flemish Belgian novelist, playwright, journalist, essayist, literary critic, philosopher, and lawyer who wrote in French.

1913 – Oloori Kofoworola “Kofo” Aina Ademola (Lady Ademola, née Moore), Nigerian children’s book author and educator who was the first black African woman to earn a degree from Oxford University and the first president of the National Council of Women Societies in Nigeria.

1916 – Harold Robbins, bestselling American author of popular novels, known for his deftness at blending his own life experiences, history, melodrama, sex, and high society into a fast-moving story.

1922 – Surendra Mohanty, Indian writer, author, autobiographer, and politician who wrote in Oriya.

1935 – Hisako Matsubara, award-winning Japanese novelist, short-story writer, playwright, nonfiction author, editor, columnist, and critic who has published works in Japanese, English, and German; her novels are set in recent Japanese history and address cultural changes and western influences, and her nonfiction books highlight contrasts between Japanese history and European history.

1943 – Beverley Naidoo, award-winning South African author, children’s writer, novelist, and biographer.

1944 – Janet Dailey, bestselling American author of romance novels, with many different series.

1948 – Elizabeth Buchan, British writer of novels, short stories, nonfiction, and biography; she is best known for her romantic novels.

1951 – Al Franken (Alan Stuart Franken), American comedian, screenwriter, author, actor, journalist, radio personality, and U.S. Senator.

1951 – Victoria (Torey) Lynn Hayden, American special-education teacher, university lecturer, and writer of fiction and nonfiction books based on her experiences teaching and counseling children with special needs.

1964 – Miriam Toews, Canadian writer and actress, best known for her novels set in the Mennonite community.

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