July 23 Writer Birthdays

1823 – Coventry Kersey Dighton Patmore, English poet and critic who was the son of novelist and editor Peter George Patmore.

1879 – Simeon Strunsky, American essayist, encyclopedia editor, editorial writer, and columnist who was born in Vitebsk, Russia (present-day Belarus).

1888 – Raymond Chandler, American author of detective fiction who helped develop the genre of the hard-boiled detective; he created the character Philip Marlowe, who was played on screen by such actors as Humphrey Bogart, James Garner, Elliott Gould, and Robert Mitchum.

1907 – Elspeth Huxley, English writer, memoirist, journalist, broadcaster, magistrate, environmentalist, farmer, and government advisor; she wrote 30 books but is best known for The Flame Trees of Thika, a memoir about her experiences growing up on a coffee farm in Colonial Kenya; her husband, Gervas Huxley, was a grandson of biologist Thomas Huxley and a cousin of writer Aldous Huxley.

1912 – M.H. Abrams, American literary critic and author; editor of the Norton Anthology of English Literature, the standard text for undergraduate literature courses!

1928 – Hubert Selby Jr., controversial American novelist, best known for his books Last Exit to Brooklyn and Requiem for a Dream; the latter was the subject of obscenity charges in Britain; a highly publicized court trial resulted in a guilty verdict, which was overturned on appeal, paving the way for the end of censorship in Britain.

1929 – Robert Quackenbush, American author and illustrator of children’s books.

1947 – Gardner Dozois, Hugo and Nebula Award-winning American science-fiction author and editor.

1978 – Lauren Groff, American novelist and short-story writer.

1978 – Milisav Popović, Montenegrin essayist, fantasy novelist, and politician; he was elected director of the National Library of Montenegro.

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