1756 – Benedikt Naubert (born Christiana Benedicta Hebenstreit), prolific German writer who published anonymously more than 50 historical novels; she is considered a pioneer of the genre.
1830 – Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach, Austrian countess, novelist, and playwright who is known for her psychological novels and is considered one of the most important German-language writers of the late 19th century.
1860 – John J. Pershing, American Army general and Pulitzer Prize-winning autobiographer.
1876 – Sherwood Anderson, American novelist, short-story writer, poet, and memoirist who was one of the first American novelists to introduce new insights from Freudian psychology, and who influenced Hemingway, Faulkner, Steinbeck, and Wolfe.
1886 – Alain Leroy Locke, American writer, philosopher, essayist, educator, and anthologist who was Alain Leroy Locke was an American writer, philosopher, educator, and patron of the arts who was the first African-American Rhodes Scholar and the “Dean of the Harlem Renaissance.”
1894 – J.B. Priestly, English novelist, playwright, screenwriter, and social commentator; in 1940 he broadcast a series of short propaganda radio talks that helped strengthen civilian morale during the Battle of Britain.
1916 – Roald Dahl, Welsh-born fighter pilot, historian of chocolate, medical inventor, screenwriter, and beloved writer of fiction for children and adults; he has been called “one of the greatest storytellers for children of the 20th century” and is best known as the author of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, and other children’s classics.
1917 – Carol Kendall, Newbery Honor-winning American children’s author.
1920 – Else Minarik, Danish-American author of the Little Bear series of children’s books, most of which were illustrated by Maurice Sendak.
1923 – Natália de Oliveira Correia, Portuguese writer, poet, politician, journalist, essayist, and social activist,
1931 – Adrienne Kennedy, influential, award-winning African-American playwright known for her surrealistic, lyrical plays that explore the violence of racism and express poetic alienation.
1943 – Mildred D. Taylor, Newbery Medal-winning African-American author most famous for Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry; her work is based in part on oral history recounted by her father, and explores themes of family and racism in the southern U.S.
1951 – Mira Widjaja Wong, popular Indonesian author and screenwriter who is also a medical doctor; she is often referred to simply as Mira W.
1955 – Hiromi Ito, prominent, award-winning Japanese novella writer, poet, essayist, and professor; common themes in her work are motherhood, women’s sexuality, and shamanism.
1961 – Tom Holt (Thomas Charles Louis Holt), British novelist who is known for historical novels written under his own name and fantasy written under the pseudonym K. J. Parker; much of his work parodies mythology, history, or literature, including a satirical autobiography of Margaret Thatcher, coauthored with Steve Nallon.
1967 – E. Lockhart, pen name of Emily Jenkins, American writer of children’s picture books, young-adult novels, and adult fiction.
1980 – Scofray Nana Yaw Yeboah, Ghanaian author, columnist, speaker, and media analyst.