Posted on October 3, 2021 at 8:00 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

Here are the literary birthdays to celebrate over the week of October 3, 2021.

Thomas Wolfe (October 3, 1900): Wolfe had intended to become a playwright, but his semiautobiographical novel Look Homeward, Angel set him firmly on the noveling path.

Gore Vidal (October 3, 1925): One of Vidal’s early novels, The City and the Pillar, shocked readers and critics with its homosexual main character; he later returned to their good graces with his Narratives of Empire novels about American history.

Jackie Collins (October 4, 1937): Collins wrote thirty-two romance novels, including The World Is Full of Married Men, The Stud, Chances, and Hollywood Wives; all of them appeared on the New York Times bestsellers list, and over 500 million copies have been sold.

Anne Rice (October 4, 1941): Rice has written more than thirty novels, most famously Interview with the Vampire, now one of the bestselling novels of all time.

Jonathan Edwards (October 5, 1703): Edwards helped launch the religious revival known as the Great Awakening, and his works, including Freedom of Will, have continued to influence religious scholars for centuries.

Clive Barker (October 5, 1952): Barker is among the leading modern-day horror writers, thanks in large part to The Books of Blood, Imajica, The Great and Secret Show, Sacrament, and Galilee.

Anita Shreve (October 7, 1946): Shreve wrote over fifteen novels; two of her best-known are The Pilot’s Wife and The Weight of the Water (a finalist for the Orange Prize).

Belva Plain (October 9, 1919): Plain began writing novels — twenty-one of which landed on the New York Times bestseller list — at the age of sixty to counteract Jewish stereotypes, including strong, well-rounded characters in such books as Evergreen and Crescent City.

Birthdays sourced from Calendar of Literary Facts; biographical information sourced from Encyclopedia Britannica, the poetry foundation, author websites, and the Nobel Prize website. Did we miss someone? Email and let us know!

Categories: Today in Books

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