1427 – Lucrezia Tornabuoni, Italian author, poet, playwright, and influential political adviser during the fifteenth century; she was connected by birth to two of the most powerful Italian families of the time, and also married into the Medici family, where she exerted significant influence and also worked to help the poor.
1856 – Henry Rider Haggard, English writer of adventure novels set in exotic locations.
1898 – Erich Marie Remarque, German author best known for his World War I novel All Quiet on the Western Front.
1906 – Anne Morrow Lindbergh, American author, poet, nonfiction writer, and aviator who married aviator Charles Lindbergh.
1913 – Sándor Weöres, Hungarian poet, author, and translator, many of whose poems have been set to music.
1940 – Abbas Kiarostami (Persian: عباس کیارستمی), Iranian screenwriter and film director.
1946 – Kaarina Helakisa, award-winning Finnish children’s book writer and translator.
1947 – Octavia E. Butler, celebrated American author of science-fiction and fantasy novels and short stories, and winner of both the Hugo and Nebula awards; her work is influenced by her view of humanity as inherently flawed by an innate tendency towards hierarchical thinking, which she said can lead to intolerance, violence and, if not checked, the ultimate destruction of the species. Her stories depict humanity’s domination of the weak by the strong as a type of parasitism, with the “others,” whether aliens, vampires, superhumans, or slave masters, defied by a protagonist who embodies difference, diversity, and change.
1951 – Rosario Murillo, Nicaraguan poet, revolutionary, and politician who is both the Vice President and the First Lady of Nicaragua.
1964 – Dan Brown, American author of thrillers, best known for his bestselling novel The Da Vinci Code.
1964 – Jason Goodwin, British author and historian who writes both nonfiction history and a series of historical fiction mysteries.
1967 – James Forman Jr., Pulitzer Prize-winning American legal scholar, professor, and nonfiction author who writes about criminal procedure and criminal law policy, constitutional law, juvenile justice, and education law and policy.
1971 – Kambri Crews, American comedian whose best known work is her memoir Burn Down the Ground.
1972 – David Rees, American cartoonist and humorist whose most recent book deals with artisanal pencil sharpening.