1634 – Pasquier Quesnel, French theologian.
1860 – Owen Wister, American author credited with inventing the western novel, with the publication of his iconic book, The Virginian; he also wrote nonfiction and biographies.
1903 – Thomas Dionysius Clark, historian, professor, and author of a landmark history of Kentucky; he was a champion for historic preservation, credited with saving from destruction a large portion of Kentucky’s printed history, which later become a core body of documents in the state archives.
1903 – Irving Stone, American writer who specialized in biographical fiction, best known for books on artists Vincent Van Gogh (Lust For Life) and Michelangelo (The Agony and the Ecstasy).
1915 – Jerome Lawrence, American playwright and author who helped create Armed Forces Radio.
1916 – Natalia Ginzburg, Italian short-story writer and political activist.
1917 – Arthur Laurents, American playwright, stage director, radio writer, screenwriter, and author of U.S. Army training films; his best known works include West Side Story and Gypsy.
1921 – Leon Garfield, British author of historical fiction for children; he was also a screenwriter who adapted Shakespearean plays into animated television programs.
1927 – Peggy Parish, American author of children’s books, including her beloved series “Amelia Bedelia”; since her death in 1988, the series has been written by her nephew, Herman Parish.
1931 – E.V. Thompson, British historical novelist, short-story writer, and nonfiction writer who was formerly in the Navy and on the police force; he often used the pseudonym James Munro.
1936 – Pema Chödrön, American Buddhist nun, author, and teacher.
1940 – Susan Howatch, English author of historical and domestic fiction, often with religious and philosophical themes; she is especially known for generational sagas.
1943 – Christopher Priest, award-winning British author of novels, short stories, radio and television scripts, biographies, criticism, novelizations, journalism, and children’s nonfiction.
1949 – Edward Graydon Carter, Canadian-born American journalist and magazine editor and founder.
1949 – Brian Sibley, English writer of radio dramas and documentaries.
1952 – Jeffry P. Freundlich, American playwright and crime novelist who uses the pen name Jeff Lindsay; his wife Hilary Hemingway coauthored many of his early published works.
1953 – Laura Numeroff, American children’s author, best known for If You Give a Mouse a Cookie and its sequels.
1958 – Joe Keenan, Emmy Award-winning American screenwriter, television producer, and author, sometimes referred to as a “gay P.D. Wodehouse.”
1959 – Tom Wujec, Canadian author, editor, and lecturer on topics relating to creativity, innovation, and technology.
1966 – Brian Selznick, Caldecott Medal-winning American author and illustrator of children’s books; his grandfather was a cousin of Hollywood producer David O. Selznick.
1974 – Aaron Becker, Caldecott Honor-winning American author and illustrator of children’s books.
1976 – Ranj Dhaliwal, controversial Indo-Canadian author of crime fiction.