1802 – Rosina Bulwer-Lytton (born Rosina Doyle Wheeler), English author of 14 novels, a volume of essays, and a volume of letters; she married Edward Bulwer-Lytton, a novelist and politician known for coining the book opening, “It was a dark and stormy night…”; after their separation, she published the novel Cheveley, or the Man of Honour, which bitterly caricatured him. Her mother was Anna Doyle Wheeler, writer and advocate for women’s rights.
1862 – Eden Phillpotts, Indian-born English author, poet, and dramatist.
1879 – Will Rogers (William Penn Adair Rogers), American writer, actor, cowboy, humorist, newspaper columnist, and social commentator.
1903 – Watchman Nee (倪柝聲), Chinese Christian author and church leader.
1906 – Sterling North, American author best known for his memoir, Rascal.
1916 – Walter Leland Cronkite Jr., an American broadcast journalist and author, best known as anchorman for the CBS Evening News; he was often called “the most trusted man in America.”
1925 – Ritwik Ghatak, Bengali Indian filmmaker and script writer, notable for his meticulous depiction of social reality.
1929 – Shakuntala Devi, Indian writer, mental calculator, and child prodigy, popularly known as the “human computer”; her talent earned her a place in The Guinness Book of World Records.
1933 – Sir Charles K. Kao, Nobel Prize-winning Chinese-born American electrical engineer and physicist who has written on optical communication technology, laying the foundation for the evolution of the internet; he is considered the Father of Fiber Optics and the Godfather of Broadband.
1936 – C.K. Williams, Pulitzer Prize-winning American poet.
1939 – Gail E. Haley, Caldecott Medal-winning American children’s author and illustrator.
1946 – Alexander “Alex” Shoumatoff, American writer known for literary journalism and books and articles about nature and the environment.
1950 – Charles Frazier, American historical novelist whose Civil War novel Cold Mountain became a bestseller and the basis for a film adaptation.
1958 – Rodrigo Rey Rosa, Guatemalan short-story writer.
1967 – Kate Cary, British author who, under the pen name Erin Hunter, writes books in the popular “Warriors” novels for young adults.
1968 – M.T. Anderson, National Book Award-winning American author of young-adult books.
1986 – Kristin Cast, bestselling American author of young-adult books.