The Writer's Almanac

By Prairie Home Productions

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Subscribers: 42
Reviews: 1

kathy
 Apr 16, 2022

Kathy 777
 Oct 26, 2020
Great way to end the day, thank you

Description

The Writer's Almanac is a daily podcast of poetry and historical interest pieces, usually of literary significance. Each day's offering is five minutes long and contains "on this day in history" information as well as an accessible poem.

Episode Date
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, May 23, 2022
300
Poet Jane Kenyon would be 75 on this day had she not died of leukemia in 1995. We hear her poem “Philosophy in Warm Weather.”
May 23, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, May 22, 2022
300
It is the birthday of Harvey Milk (1930), the first openly gay man elected to public office. He was assassinated in 1978 about a year after his election to City Supervisor.
May 22, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, May 21, 2022
300
On this day in 1881, Clara Barton founded the American Red Cross. Clara Barton said, "I may be compelled to face danger, but never fear it, and while our soldiers can stand and fight, I can stand and feed and nurse them."
May 21, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, May 20, 2022
300
On this day in 1946 English-born poet, W.H. Auden became a U.S. citizen. "It's a sad fact about our culture that a poet can earn much more money writing or talking about his art than he can by practicing it."
May 20, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, May 19, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of the minister and activist Malcolm X, born in 1925, and also of playwright Lorraine Hansberry, born in 1930.
May 19, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, May 18, 2022
300
"The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time." -- Bertrand Russell, philosopher, born on this day in 1872.
May 18, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, May 17, 2022
300
Today would have been the 83rd birthday of Gary Paulsen, author of “Hatchet,” who died in October of last year.
May 17, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, May 16, 2022
300
It's the birthday of writer, historian, and radioman Studs Terkel (1912), whose career was built out of in-depth personal interviews.
May 16, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, May 15, 2022
300
“Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.” Words written by the man behind “The Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum, born this day in 1856.
May 15, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, May 14, 2022
300
America’s first space station Skylab was launched on this date in 1973. Occupied for only 8 months, it was the first platform for science in space.
May 14, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, May 13, 2022
300
Author Daphne du Maurier was born on this day in London (1907). Her blockbuster novel “Rebecca” (1938) was turned into a film of the same name by Alfred Hitchcock.
May 13, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, May 12, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of novelist and poet Rosellen Brown, born in 1939. Her novels include “Tender Mercies” and most recently “Half a Heart”.
May 12, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, May 11, 2022
300
It's the anniversary of the printing of the first known book, the Diamond Sutra. In the year 868, Wang Chieh printed a Buddhist scripture on a 16-foot scroll using wood blocks.
May 11, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, May 10, 2022
300
On this date in 1872 Victoria Claflin Woodhull became the first woman candidate for president of the United States.
May 10, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, May 9, 2022
300
“I write to annoy God, to make Death laugh. I write because I can’t get it right. I write because I want every woman in the world to fall in love with me.” –Charles Simic, born on this day in 1938.
May 09, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, May 8, 2022
300
“I am a poet who has preferred not to distinguish in poetry between nature and humanity.” –Gary Snyder, born on this day in 1930.
May 08, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, May 7, 2022
300
It's the birthday of French playwright, activist, and feminist Olympe de Gouges (1748) who said that if "Woman has the right to mount the scaffold; she must equally have the right to mount the rostrum."
May 07, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, May 6, 2022
300
“Being entirely honest with oneself is a good exercise.” And “The ego is not master in its own house.” –Sigmund Freud, born on this day in 1856.
May 06, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, May 5, 2022
300
It’s the birthday of the journalist Nellie Bly, born Elizabeth Jane Cochran in 1864. She became famous for feigning mental illness and exposing conditions in an asylum.
May 05, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, May 4, 2022
300
On this day in 1675, England’s King Charles II commissioned the Royal Greenwich Observatory and appointed the position of Astronomer Royal.
May 04, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, May 3, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of poet, novelist, and memoirist May Sarton, born in Belgium in 1912.
May 02, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, May 1, 2022
300
On this date in 1840, the first official adhesive postage stamp was issued in Great Britain. Called the Penny Black, it was an engraved profile of Queen Victoria on a black background.
May 01, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, May 2, 2022
300
"You know more than you think you do." The parenting advice of the baby boomer generation came from Dr. Benjamin Spock, born on this day in 1903.
May 01, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, April 30, 2022
300
It's the 77th birthday of author Annie Dillard. She won the Pulitzer Prize for her novel “Pilgrim at Tinker Creek.”
Apr 30, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, April 29, 2022
300
"Jazz has always been like the kind of a man you wouldn't want your daughter to associate with" -- Edward Kennedy aka Duke Ellington, born 4/29/1899.
Apr 29, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, April 28, 2022
300
“You can make a killing in the theater, but not a living.”—Robert Anderson, playwright, born on this day 1917.
Apr 28, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, April 27, 2022
300
It’s the birthday of Mary Wollstonecraft, born in 1759. Her book “A Vindication of the Rights of Woman” is one of the earliest books of feminist philosophy.
Apr 27, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, April 26, 2022
300
Ornithologist John James Audubon was born on this day in 1785, his masterpiece “Birds of America” contained 435 life-sized hand-colored plates of birds.
Apr 26, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, April 25, 2022
300
“Behind the screen of the ordinary can be found unique and wonderful things.” –Ted Kooser, poet, celebrating his 83rd birthday today.
Apr 25, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, April 24, 2022
300
On this day in 1916, the Easter Rising began in Dublin. While it failed as a rebellion, it galvanized a movement. Five years later the Republic of Ireland achieved independence.
Apr 24, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, April 23, 2022
300
It’s the birthday of the American writer Barry Hannah (1942). He said, “I loved the life, the secret life, of the typewriter when the house was quiet.”
Apr 23, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, April 22, 2022
300
"Two things fill the mind with ever-increasing wonder and awe ... the starry heavens above me and the moral law within me." – Immanuel Kant, born on this day in 1724.
Apr 22, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, April 21, 2022
300
Naturalist John Muir was born in Dunbar, Scotland, on this day in 1838. The founder of the Sierra Club was essential in protecting American wilderness areas.
Apr 21, 2022
The Writer's Almanac Wednesday, April 20, 2022
300
“Southern trees bear a strange fruit/Blood on the leaves and blood at the root”—The song “Strange Fruit” was recorded on this day in 1939 by Billie Holiday.
Apr 20, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, April 19, 2022
300
"There are no good girls gone wrong, just bad girls found out."—author and Actress Mae West, who was jailed on this day in 1927 for her performance in “Sex” on broadway.
Apr 19, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, April 18, 2022
300
Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist Susan Faludi was born on this day in 1959. Her latest work is a memoir, “In the Darkroom.”
Apr 18, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, April 17, 2022
300
"The sentence is my primary element, my tool, goal, bliss. Each new sentence is a heart-in-the mouth experiment." -- novelist and essayist Cynthia Ozick, was born on this day in 1928.
Apr 17, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, April 16, 2022
300
The originator of “The Boxcar Children,” author Gertrude Chandler Warner was born on this day in 1890. She wrote the first 18 of the series.
Apr 16, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, April 15, 2022
300
570 years ago, on April 15th, the original Renaissance Man was born in Tuscany, Leonardo da Vinci (1452).
Apr 15, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, April 14, 2022
300
It was on this day in 1828 that Noah Webster's “American Dictionary of the English Language” was published.
Apr 14, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, April 13, 2022
300
It's the birthday of Thomas Jefferson (1743) who said, "In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock."
Apr 13, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, April 12, 2022
300
It's the 70th birthday of author Gary Soto. His most recent work is a collection of poetry “Meatballs for the People: Proverbs to Chew On” published in 2017.
Apr 12, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, April 11, 2022
300
On this day in 1945, the U.S. Army liberated the Buchenwald concentration camp near Weimar, Germany.
Apr 11, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, April 10, 2022
300
On this day in 1925 “The Great Gatsby” was first published to a mixed reception. Now viewed as a classic, in 2020 it entered the public domain.
Apr 10, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, April 9, 2022
300
On this day in 1865 General Robert E. Lee surrendered his 28,000 Confederate troops to Union General Ulysses S. Grant, effectively ending the American Civil War.
Apr 09, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, April 8, 2022
300
The editor and publisher Robert Giroux was born on this day, 1914. He published Jean Stafford, Robert Lowell, and Flannery O’Connor.
Apr 08, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, April 7, 2022
300
Today, for his 252nd birthday, we hear a poem by William Wordsworth “I Have Thoughts that Are Fed by the Sun”
Apr 07, 2022
The Writer's Almanac Wednesday, April 6, 2022
300
On this day in 1748, excavations began to unearth the doomed city of Pompeii, the city buried in ash after the 79 BCE eruption of Mount Vesuvious.
Apr 06, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, April 5, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of 16th century philosopher Thomas Hobbes, and poet Algernon Charles Swinburne, born in 1837.
Apr 05, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, April 4, 2022
300
Today we celebrate the 1928 birth of Maya Angelou, author of “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” and 35 other books.
Apr 04, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, April 3, 2022
300
Today is the 88th birthday of Dr. Jane Goodall who said “What makes us human, I think, is the ability to ask questions, a consequence of our sophisticated spoken language.”
Apr 03, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, April 2, 2022
300
“If you ask me what I came into this life to do, I will tell you: I came to live out loud.” -- Émile Zola, born on this day in 1840.
Apr 02, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, April 1, 2022
300
Kenyan teacher, author, and environmentalist Wangari Muta Maathai was born on this day, 1940. Maathai was the first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
Apr 01, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, March 31, 2022
300
César Chávez was born on this day in 1927. His leadership on labor and civil rights enmeshed his name with the organized labor movement. President Biden keeps a bust of Chávez behind his desk in the Oval Office.
Mar 31, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, March 30, 2022
300
Minnesota teacher and author Jon Hassler was born on this day 1933. Author of 12 novels, several set in the fictional town of Staggerford.
Mar 30, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, March 29, 2022
300
Monty Python star, Eric Idle, celebrates his 79th birthday today. Idle wrote many of Python’s songs including “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life,” and won a Tony for the musical “Spamalot” in 2004.
Mar 29, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, March 28, 2022
300
"A certain ruthlessness and a sense of alienation from society is as essential to creative writing as it is to armed robbery." -- Nelson Algren, born on this day in Detroit, 1909.
Mar 28, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, March 27, 2022
300
John O’Farrell celebrates his 60th birthday today. He's a columnist, a stand-up comedian, and an author. His latest work is a novel, “There’s Only Two David Beckhams.”
Mar 27, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, March 26, 2022
300
It’s the 80th birthday of the author Erica Jong. Best known for the boldly sexual feminist novel “Fear of Flying”. Her most recent work is a poetry collection, The World Began with Yes (2019).
Mar 26, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, March 25, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of Flannery O'Connor (1925), who said that her subject was "the action of grace in territory held largely by the devil."
Mar 25, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, March 24, 2022
300
"The easiest way to attract a crowd is to let it be known that at a given time and a given place someone is going to attempt something that in the event of failure will result in sudden death." –Harry Houdini, born on this day 1874.
Mar 24, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, March 23, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of filmmaker Akira Kurosawa, born in Tokyo, Japan (1910). Best known for his film “Rashomon.” George Lucas said he lifted the plot of Star Wars from Kurosawa’s epic, “Hidden Fortress.
Mar 23, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, March 22, 2022
300
“While the novelist is banging on his typewriter, the poet is watching a fly in the window pane.” – poet Billy Collins, born on this day in 1941.
Mar 22, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, March 21, 2022
300
Today in 1965 thousands of marchers left Selma, Alabama, headed to Montgomery, to protest the disenfranchisement of African-American voters.
Mar 21, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, March 20, 2022
300
On this day in 1852, “Uncle Tom's Cabin” by Harriet Beecher Stowe was published. It sold 10,000 copies in its first week and about 2 million copies by 1857.
Mar 20, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, March 19, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of Nikolai Gogol, born in Great Sorochintsy, Ukraine (1809). His works were very popular in Russia and strongly influenced Dostoevsky and other Russian writers of the 19th century.
Mar 19, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, March 18, 2022
300
"There is nothing but beauty — and beauty has only one perfect expression, Poetry. All the rest is a lie." -- French poet Stéphane Mallarmé, born on this day 1842.
Mar 18, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, March 17, 2022
300
Novelist and children’s author Penelope Lively was born on this day in Cairo, Egypt (1933). She’s the author of "Moon Tiger" and most recently a memoir "Life in the Garden."
Mar 17, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, March 16 , 2022
300
Today is the birthday of César Vallejo born in Peru, in 1892. A poet, he only published two books in his lifetime but was hailed as a revolutionary innovator of the form.
Mar 16, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, March 15, 2022
300
“Literature may come from a specific place, but it always lives in its own unique kingdom.” –Ben Okri, born in Minna, Nigeria on this day, 1959.
Mar 15, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, March 14, 2022
300
Sylvia Beach was born on this day in 1887. She founded the bookstore “Shakespeare and Company” in Paris which became an influential gathering place for English writers in the 1920s.
Mar 14, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, March 13, 2022
300
Today in 1892 Jannet Flanner was born. She became a journalist who wrote a column called “Letters From Paris” starting in 1925, and also served as a WWII war correspondent.
Mar 13, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, March 12, 2022
300
"Poetry calls us to pause. There is so much we overlook, while the abundance around us continues to shimmer, on its own." -- Naomi Shihab Nye, celebrating 70 years of life today.
Mar 12, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, March 11, 2022
300
On this day in 1959 Lorraine Hansberry’s play “A Raisin in the Sun” opened on Broadway. New York Times called it “the play that changed American theater forever.”
Mar 11, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, March 10, 2022
300
It's the birthday of the author of the style guide known as "Fowler's Modern English Usage"--Henry Watson Fowler, born in Tonbridge, England (1858).
Mar 10, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, March 9, 2022
300
It's the birthday of writer Vita Sackville-West (1892), and also the publication date of her lover Virginia Woolf’s first novel “The Voyage Out” (1913).
Mar 09, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, March 8, 2022
300
Writer John McPhee celebrates his 91st birthday today. A writer of non-fiction, his work spans a vast range of subjects from the making of canoes, to military stories, to his own genealogy.
Mar 08, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, March 7, 2022
300
“The woods are lovely, dark, and deep/But I have promises to keep/And miles to go before I sleep" Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening," published on this day in 1923.
Mar 07, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, March 6, 2022
300
"What matters in life is not what happens to you but what you remember and how you remember it." --Gabriel García Márquez, born this day in Colombia, 1927.
Mar 06, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, March 5, 2022
300
Gerardus Mercator is not a household name. Born in 1512, he developed the “Mercator projection,” distorting a map so latitude and longitude lines were at right angles. It revolutionized navigation, and is still used today.
Mar 05, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, March 4, 2022
300
Frances Perkins became the first female U.S. Secretary of Labor on this date in 1933. She led the elimination of Child Labor, the 40-hour workweek, and Social Security.
Mar 04, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, March 3, 2022
300
220 years ago on this day, Ludwig van Beethoven published the "Moonlight" Sonata. Of its popularity, he said, "Surely I've written better things."
Mar 03, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, March 2 , 2022
300
"Life is a dream for the wise, a game for the fool, a comedy for the rich, a tragedy for the poor."-- Sholem Aleichem, born on this day in Ukraine, 1859.
Mar 02, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, March 1, 2022
300
Today we celebrate the birth of two poets, Robert Lowell (1917) and Richard Wilbur (1921), both two-time winners of the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry.
Mar 01, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, February 28, 2022
300
Colum McCann celebrates his 57th birthday today. His latest work, “Apeirogon,” is a novel about a friendship between two men, one Israeli and one Palestinian.
Feb 28, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, February 27, 2022
300
Novelist John Steinbeck was born on this day in 1902. "The writer must believe that what he is doing is the most important thing in the world. And he must hold to this illusion even when he knows it is not true."
Feb 27, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, February 26, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of Fats Domino (1928) who sold more records in the 1950’s than anyone other than Elvis Presley.
Feb 26, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, February 25, 2022
300
"Every grain of experience is food for the greedy growing soul of the artist." -- Anthony Burgess (1972), best known as the author of the dystopian novel “A Clockwork Orange.”
Feb 25, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, February 24, 2022
300
"Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart." – Steve Jobs, born on this day (1955).
Feb 24, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, February 23, 2022
300
On this day in 1898 the French novelist Émile Zola was found guilty of libel for writing "J'accuse," an exposee on how the French Government had convicted an innocent man.
Feb 23, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, February 22, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of poet Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892). Millay performed her poem "Renascence" and a woman was so impressed that she paid Edna's college tuition.
Feb 22, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, February 21, 2022
300
This day in 1925 the first edition of The New Yorker magazine was published. The first cover was drawn by Rea Irvin. The image was a dandy in a top hat looking at a butterfly through a monocle.
Feb 21, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, February 20, 2022
300
On this day in 1902, Ansel Adams was born in San Francisco. His photographs of Yosemite and other wilderness areas would become familiar to millions of people.
Feb 20, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, February 19, 2022
300
It’s the 70th birthday of author Amy Tan, author of “The Joy Luck Club” and other novels.
Feb 19, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, February 18, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of Toni Morrison (1931). Her first novel, “The Bluest Eye,” was published when she was 38 years old, a story about a black girl who wanted blue eyes.
Feb 18, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, February 17, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of science fiction writer Andre Norton (1912) who legally changed her name from Alice Mary Norton because she thought a man’s name would help her sell more books.
Feb 17, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, February 16, 2022
300
In the year 1740, a boy named Giambattista Bodoni was born in Saluzzo, Italy. He came from a family of engravers, and he had personally designed almost 300 typefaces.
Feb 16, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, February 15, 2022
300
Cartoonist Matt Groening celebrates his birthday today. Born in 1954, Groening is best known for creating “The Simpsons.”
Feb 15, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, February 14, 2022
300
On this Valentine's Day, we remember Zelda Sayer and F. Scott Fitzgerald, a couple so famous in their day they were known by their first names, Scott and Zelda.
Feb 14, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, February 13, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of religious historian Elaine Pagels, author of The Gnostic Gospel, and most recently, Why Religion? A Personal Story.
Feb 13, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, February 12, 2022
300
Judy Blume, who for decades has written memorable and provoking books for young people (and a few for adults), celebrates 84 years on earth today.
Feb 12, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, February 11, 2022
300
It’s the birthday of Pico Iyer (1957) who said writing should “be as spontaneous and urgent as a letter to a lover, or a message to a friend who has just lost a parent”
Feb 11, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, February 10, 2022
300
"Art is not a mirror held up to reality but a hammer with which to shape it." –Bertolt Brecht, poet & playwright born on this day in 1898.
Feb 10, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, February 9, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of Alice Walker (1944), author of “The Color Purple.” Her memoir “Gathering Blossums Under Fire: The Journals of Alice Walker, 1965-2000,” will be published this spring.
Feb 09, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, February 8, 2022
300
Poet Elizabeth Bishop was born on this day in 1910. She published only 101 poems in her lifetime, and reworked her poem "The Moose" for 25 years.
Feb 08, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, February 7, 2022
300
Today is 210 years since the birth of Charles Dickens, one of the most famous writers in the English language.
Feb 07, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, February 5, 2022
300
Today marks the birth of William S. Burroughs, 1914. The American novelist, poet, and painter is best known for his novel “Naked Lunch.”
Feb 05, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, February 4, 2022
300
Novelist MacKinlay Kantor was born on this day in 1904. He won the Pulitzer Prize for his novel “Andersonville” (1955), about a Confederate prison camp, which he spent 25 years researching.
Feb 04, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, February 3, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of painter Norman Rockwell (1894), the first female doctor Elizabeth Blackwell (1821), and writer Gertrude Stein (1874).
Feb 03, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, February 6, 2022
300
Food and plant centered non-fiction writer, Michael Pollan, celebrates his 67th birthday today. He urges, “Don't eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn't recognize as food.”
Feb 03, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, February 2, 2022
300
The author of “Ulysses” and “Finnegans Wake,” James Joyce, was born on this day 140 years ago in Dublin 1882. One of his Parisian friends remarked, "He had not taste, only genius."
Feb 02, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, February 1, 2022
300
Poet Langston Hughes was born on this day in 1902, 120 years ago. He said, “Writing is like travelling. It's wonderful to go somewhere, but you get tired of staying.”
Feb 01, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, January 31, 2022
300
This day in 1923 Norman Mailer was born, author of “The Naked and the Dead,” “The Armies of the Night,” and “The Executioner’s Song.”
Jan 31, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, January 30, 2022
300
Fifty years ago today British army parachutists shot 27 unarmed civil rights demonstrators in Derry, Northern Ireland — an event known as "Bloody Sunday."
Jan 30, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, January 29, 2022
300
It was on this day in 1845 that Edgar Allan Poe's poem "The Raven" was published in the New York Evening Mirror. Poe only earned $9 for the poem.
Jan 29, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, January 28, 2022
300
It’s the birthday of Collette (1873) who said, "Sit down and put down everything that comes into your head and then you're a writer. But an author is one who can judge his own stuff's worth, without pity, and destroy most of it."
Jan 28, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, January 27, 2022
300
This day in 1832 marked the birth of Lewis Carroll, best known as the author of “Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.”
Jan 27, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, January 26, 2022
300
It's the 92nd birthday of Jules Feiffer, born in the Bronx (1929). His career as a satirist included being a cartoonist, novelist, and playwright.
Jan 26, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, January 25, 2022
300
Today we celebrate the 140th anniversary of the birth of Adeline Virginia Stephen, better known as Virginia Woolf.
Jan 25, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, January 24, 2022
300
"There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that receives it."
--Edith Wharton, born on this day in New York City, 1862.
Jan 24, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, January 23, 2022
300
For every poet it is always morning in the world… the fate of poetry is to fall in love with the world, in spite of History." -- poet Derek Walcott, born on this day 1930.
Jan 23, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, January 22, 2022
300
It was on this day in 1938 that Thornton Wilder's play “Our Town” was premiered at the McCarter Theatre in Princeton, New Jersey.
Jan 22, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, January 21, 2022
300
“I just try, like any writer, to be entertaining and interesting. I want people to get some pleasure and to learn something.”--Louis Menand (1952), American Critic and essayist.
Jan 21, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, January 20, 2022
300
Novelist Tami Hoag was born on this day, 1959. One good thing about being a writer, she said, is “I’m not obligated to look good on a daily basis.”
Jan 20, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, January 19, 2022
300
Today is the 76th birthday of Dolly Parton, author of thousands of songs, an autobiography in 2021, as well as the children's book “Coat of Many Colors” (2019).
Jan 19, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, January 18, 2022
300
It’s the birthday of A.A. Milne (1882), who created Winnie-the Pooh. The iconic “bear of very little brain” entered the public domain this year, 2022.
Jan 18, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, January 17, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of the youngest of the Brontë sisters, Anne Brontë. At age 29 she was the third of the four Bronte children to die of Tuberculosis.
Jan 17, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, January 16, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of three very different modern writers: food writer Ruth Reichl (1948), poet Mary Karr (1955), and activist Susan Sontag (1933).
Jan 16, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, January 15, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr. (1929). He said, "If a man hasn't discovered something that he will die for, he isn't fit to live."
Jan 15, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, January 14, 2022
300
Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd celebrates her 70th birthday today. She said, "The minute you settle for less than you deserve, you get even less than you settled for."
Jan 14, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, January 13, 2022
300
On this day in 1968 country musician, Johnny Cash recorded a live concert at Folsom Prison in California.
Jan 13, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, January 12, 2022
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Myself, I'm a very realistic person. [...]But when I write, I write weird." --novelist Haruki Murakami, born on this day in Kyoto, Japan,1949.
Jan 12, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, January 11, 2022
300
"The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook" — psychologist and philosopher William James, born on this day 1842.
Jan 11, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, January 10, 2022
300
It's the birthday of Stephen Ambrose, who said of why he chose to become a historian “[It] occurred to me that I could add to the sum of the world's knowledge."
Jan 10, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, January 9, 2022
300
"The writer of originality, unless dead, is always shocking, scandalous; novelty disturbs and repels." –Simone de Beauvoir, born this day in Paris, 1980.
Jan 09, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, January 8, 2022
300
My goal is simple. It is a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all." – Stephen Hawking, born on this day, 1942.
Jan 08, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, January 7, 2022
300
Africain American filmmaker, author, and anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston was born in Alabama on this day in 1891. Author of “Their Eyes Were Watching God.”
Jan 07, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, January 6, 2022
300
“I write pieces, and move them around. And the fun of it is watching the truthful parts slide together. What is false won’t fit.” --Elizabeth Strout, novelist, born on this day in 1956.
Jan 06, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, January 5, 2022
300
Today is the birthday of literary and social activist Ngugi wa Thiong'o, born in Kenya, 1938. He writes in his native Kikuyu language to celebrate his heritage and protest Kenya’s use of English as the official language.
Jan 05, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, January 4, 2022
300
Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin celebrates her 79th birthday today. About her work she has said, “As a historian, what I trust is my ability to take a mass of information and tell a story shaped around it.”
Jan 04, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, January 3, 2022
300
"A whale ship was my Yale College and my Harvard." said Herman Melville, author of “Moby Dick,” who went to sea on the whaler Acushnet on this day, 1841.
Jan 03, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, January 2, 2022
300
American Cartoonist Lynda Barry turns 65 today. And,it’s the birthday of author Isaac Asimov (1920) who has books in all 10 categories of the Dewey Decimal System.
Jan 02, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, January 1, 2022
300
New Years Day is the birthday of J.D. Salinger,born in New York City (1919), author of “The Catcher in the Rye” which has sold more than 60 million copies.
Jan 01, 2022
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, December 31, 2021
300
On New Years' Eve, 1879, Thomas Edison demonstrated the first incandescent light bulb for 3,000 spectators, who were awed and delighted with the invention.
Dec 31, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, December 30, 2021
300
Today is the 75th birthday of Patti Smith. Sometimes known as “the godmother of punk,” Smith is also the author of poetry collections, art, and memoir.
Dec 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, December 29, 2021
300
Today is the anniversary of the massacre at Wounded Knee, resulting in the death of over 150 native Lakota Sioux people, including Chief Sitting Bull.
Dec 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, December 28, 2021
300
Comedian Sam Levenson was born on this day in New York, 1911. “It's so simple to be wise. Just think of something stupid to say and say the opposite.
Dec 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, December 27, 2021
300
James Barrie’s play “Peter Pan, the Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up” had its opening night on this day in 1904.
Dec 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, December 26, 2021
300
Today is the first day of Kwanzaa, also the birth of humorist David Sedaris (1956) whose latest book “A Carnival of Snackery” came out in October.
Dec 26, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, December 25, 2021
300
Christmas Day. Also the birthday of Dorothy Wordsworth, sister of William Wordsworth, whom we now know used some of his sister’s writings in his poems.
Dec 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, December 24, 2021
300
For Christmas Eve we discuss the story "Dancing Dan's Christmas" by Damon Runyon.
Dec 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, December 23, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of Minnesota poet Robert Bly, who died just a month ago, Nov. 21st, a month shy of his 95th birthday. We feature his poem “The Call Away.”
Dec 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, December 22, 2021
300
It's the birthday Kenneth Rexroth (1905). He published more than 50 books of poetry and once said, "Man thrives where angels would die of ecstasy and where pigs would die of disgust."
Dec 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, December 21, 2021
300
Today in 1879, the world premiere of Henrik Ibsen's play “A Doll's House” took place at the Royal Theatre in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Dec 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, December 20, 2021
300
“If it were denied me to write, I imagine I would die,” for through writing she makes sense of her own deepest experiences. --Elizabeth Benedict, born on this day in 1954.
Dec 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, December 19, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1843 that Charles Dickens published "A Christmas Carol: A Ghost Story of Christmas." Introducing the world to Scrooge, Marley's Ghost, and Tiny Tim.
Dec 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, December 18, 2021
300
Methodist hymn writer Charles Wesley was born on this day, 1707, in Epworth England. His hymns include “Love Divine, All Loves Excelling” and “Hark! the Herald Angels Sing.”
Dec 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, December 17, 2021
300
200 years ago Kentucky became the first state to abolish debtor's prison, where often people were imprisoned simply for being poor. Bankruptcy was set up to deal instead with unpayable debts.
Dec 17, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, December 16, 2021
300
Jane Austen was born on this day, 1775, in England. Author of "Pride and Prejudice", "Emma" and "Persuasion."
Dec 16, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, December 15, 2021
300
230 years ago the Bill of Rights was ratified by the United States of America. These powerful statements were spearheaded by James Madison, later the 4th president of the United States.
Dec 15, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, December 14, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1911 that the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen and his team became the first people ever to reach the South Pole.
Dec 14, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, December 13, 2021
300
"The Romans would never have found time to conquer the world if they had been obliged first to learn Latin." -- Heinrich Heine, born in Germany on this day in 1797.
Dec 13, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, December 12, 2021
300
"Be regular and orderly in your life so that you may be violent and original in your work." -- Gustave Flaubert, born on this day in France, 1821. Best known for “Madame Bovary”
Dec 12, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, December 11, 2021
300
“The best training is to read and write, no matter what…Write what will stop your breath if you don’t write.” -- Grace Paley (born 1922).
Dec 11, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, December 10, 2021
300
“Hope is the thing with feathers/That perches in the soul/And sings the tune without the words/And never stops at all.” ― Emily Dickinson, born on this day in 1830.
Dec 10, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, December 9, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of poet John Milton (1608), author of the epic poem “Paradise Lost.” We feature Milton’s poem “On His Blindness.”
Dec 09, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, December 8, 2021
300
The Roman lyric poet, and soldier, Horace was born on this day 65BCE He lived during the time of Caesar Augustus (Octavian), writing his Odes on many topics.
Dec 08, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, December 7, 2021
300
Willa Cather was born on this day, 1913. On writing, she said, “If I made a chore of it, my enthusiasm would die…I make it an adventure every day.”
Dec 07, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, December 6, 2021
300
It’s children's writer Susanna Moodie’s birthday today. Born 1903 in England, she wrote about frontier life in Canada, compared to the Little House books, but with the goal of discouraging English people from undertaking the adventure.
Dec 06, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Sunday, December 5, 2021
300
"Do not whine... Do not complain. Work harder. Spend more time alone." – Joan Didion, born on this day in 1934.
Dec 05, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Saturday, December 4, 2021
300
It's the birthday of mystery writer Cornell Woolrich (1903) whose stories were often adapted for radio and film, including “The Bride Wore Black” and “Night Has a Thousand Eyes.”
Dec 04, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Friday, December 3, 2021
300
This day in 1947 the play “A Streetcar Named Desire” by Tennessee Williams premiered on Broadway at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre.
Dec 03, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Thursday, December 2, 2021
300
“People like to ask me if writing can be taught, and I say yes… but I can't teach you how to have something to say."—Ann Patchett, born on this day 1963.
Dec 02, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Wednesday, December 1, 2021
300
On this day in 1860 the first two chapters of Charles Dickens' novel “Great Expectations” were published.
Dec 01, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Tuesday, November 30, 2021
300
"A successful book is not made of what is in it, but of what is left out of it"-- Mark Twain, born Samuel Clemens in Florida, Missouri on this day in 1835.
Nov 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac for Monday, November 29, 2021
300
November 29th celebrates the birth of Madeleine L’Engle author of “A Wrinkle in Time,”and Louisa May Alcott author of “Little Women”, and C.S. Lewis, author of “The Chronicles of Narnia.”
Nov 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, November 28, 2021
300
It's the birthday of poet and artist William Blake, (1757). "Without minute neatness of execution, the sublime cannot exist! Grandeur of ideas is founded on precision of ideas."
Nov 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, November 27, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Swedish astronomer Anders Celsius, (1701) who invented the Celsius temperature scale.
Nov 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, November 26, 2021
300
“The human situation is beautiful and strange. …The working of the mind is astonishing and beautiful.”-- Marilynne Robinson, born on this day,1943.
Nov 26, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, November 25, 2021
300
Happy Thanksgiving from The Writer’s Almanac! We feature the November poem “Murmuration” by Barbara Crooker.”
Nov 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, November 24, 2021
300
“I am a teller of stories. For me, that’s the only way I can make sense of the world.”-- Arundhati Roy, Indian author and political activist born on this day in 1961.
Nov 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, November 23, 2021
300
On this date in the year 534 B.C.E., Thespis reportedly became the first Western actor to portray a character onstage. Prior to that theater was chorus based storytelling.
Nov 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, November 22, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of novelist George Eliot, born Mary Ann Evans in England (1819). She took a male pseudonym to be taken seriously as a writer.
Nov 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, November 21, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of playwright and philosopher Voltaire, born François-Marie Arouet in Paris (1694).
Nov 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, November 20, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of astronomer Edwin Powell Hubble (1889). He discovered that these distant galaxies were moving away from the Milky Way.
Nov 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, November 19, 2021
300
On this date in 1863, Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address at the dedication of the Soldiers' National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
Nov 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, November 18, 2021
300
Today is the 82nd birthday of poet, novelist, activist, and feminist Margaret Atwood, who said, "I read for pleasure and that is the moment I learn the most."
Nov 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, November 17, 2021
300
Today we feature the poem “As Toilsome I Wander'd Virginia's Woods” by Walt Whitman.
Nov 17, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, November 16, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of the Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Paula Vogel (1951). Author “How I Learned to Drive” and “The Baltimore Waltz.”
Nov 16, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, November 15, 2021
300
“Each poem I think will be the last. But something always comes up and catches my fancy.” --Marianne Moore, born on this day in 1887.
Nov 15, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, November 14, 2021
302
It was on this day in 1851 that Moby-Dick was published. This historic work entered the public domain this year and begins with the words “Call me Ishmael.”
Nov 14, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, November 13, 2021
301
It was on this day in 1789 that Ben Franklin wrote his famous phrase “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”
Nov 13, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, November 12, 2021
301
Today is the birthday of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, an author, speaker, and activist promoter of womens rights and sufferage.
Nov 12, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, November 11, 2021
301
Today is the birthday of Kurt Vonnegut (1922), author of many books including “Slaughterhouse-Five,” “Jailbird,” and “Welcome to the Monkey House.”
Nov 11, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, November 10, 2021
301
It was on this day in 1956 that American jazz singer Billie Holiday performed a legendary concert at Carnegie Hall after a three-year absence.
Nov 10, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, November 9, 2021
301
Poet Anne Sexton was born on this day in 1928. “The beautiful feeling after writing a poem is on the whole better even than after sex, and that’s saying a lot.”
Nov 09, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, November 8, 2021
300
"In a weak moment, I have written a book." said Margaret Mitchell of her epic novel “Gone With the Wind.” She was born on this day in 1937.
Nov 08, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, November 7, 2021
301
Today marks the birth of Canadian songstress and painter Joni Mitchell (1943), as well as of Polish physicist and chemist Marie Curie (1867).
Nov 07, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, November 6, 2021
301
It’s the birthday of poet Anne Porter (1911). She published her first collection, “An Altogether Different Language” in 1994 when she was 83 years old.
Nov 06, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, November 5, 2021
301
“I do not remember when I did not expect to be a writer,” wrote Ella Wheeler Wilcox, American poet, born on this day in 1850.
Nov 05, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, November 4, 2021
301
Today is the birthday of Pulitzer Prize winning American poet C.K. Williams (1936) and of humorist, actor, and vaudeville performer Will Rogers (1879).
Nov 04, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, November 3, 2021
301
The last public execution at London's Tyburn Gallows took place on this date in 1783. And 100 years later, 1883, the outlaw who called himself "Black Bart the poet" robbed his last stagecoach.
Nov 03, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, November 2, 2021
301
Today is the birthday of the ill fated, and much maligned, Queen of France Marie-Antoinette (1755) who lost her head to the French Revolution.
Nov 02, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, November 1, 2021
301
The first medical school for women opened in Boston, Massachusetts, on this date in 1848. It was started by Samuel Gregory who named it the Boston Female Medical College.
Nov 01, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, October 31, 2021
300
“My queerness is not a vice, is not deliberate, and harms no one.”-- Natalie Clifford Barney, an American writer born in 1876 who lived an openly lesbian life in Paris.
Oct 31, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, October 30, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Ezra Pound (1885). He coined the term “imagism” for poetry which sought clarity of expression through the use of precise images.
Oct 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, October 29, 2021
300
Today is the birthday Harriet Powers (1937). Folk artist and quilt maker she was born into slavery outside Athens, Georgia (1837). Her quilts hang in the Smithsonian and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.
Oct 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, October 28, 2021
300
It's the birthday of Dr. Jonas Salk (1914), inventor of the polio vaccine. Released in 1955, the number of people infected by polio declined from 10,000+ a year to less than 100.
Oct 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, October 27, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of poet Sylvia Plath (1932-1963) who said, "The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt."
Oct 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, October 26, 2021
300
On this day in 1900 Henry James gave writing advice to Edith Wharton, then a young novelist. "Be tethered in native pastures, even if it reduces [you] to a back-yard in New York."
Oct 26, 2021
The Writer's Amanac - Monday, October 25, 2021
300
Novelist Anne Tyler celebrates her 80th year today. She is author of the Pulitzer Prize winning “Breathing Lessons,” and “Longlist,” winner of the Man Booker Prize.
Oct 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, October 24, 2021
300
"I'm not very good at praying, but what I experience when I'm writing a poem is close to prayer." --Poet Denise Levertov, born this day in 1923.
Oct 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, October 23, 2021
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Today is the 60th birthday of author Laurie Halse Anderson who writes books for children and young adults on challenging topics. Books such as “Speak” and “Chains”.
Oct 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, October 22, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Doris Lessing, 1919. Lessing said "A writer falls in love with an idea and gets carried away…If you can imagine the sheer bloody pleasure of having an idea and taking it! It's one of the great pleasures in my life."
Oct 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, October 21, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of the inventor of dynamite, Alfred Nobel (1833). Nobel, to prevent his legacy from being one of death, established the Nobel Prizes to celebrate humankind's greatest achievements.
Oct 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, October 20, 2021
300
“Reading a poem silently instead of saying a poem is like the difference between staring at sheet music and actually humming or playing the music on an instrument." –Robert Pinsky (1940)
Oct 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, October 19, 2021
300
"I have always written what I wanted to write. I have never considered the audience for one second. … Before publication, I am a despot."—Philip Pullman (1946)
Oct 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, October 18, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Chuck Berry (1926). The singer-songwriter broke into the charts in 1955 with “Maybellene,” and in 1958 “Johnny B. Goode.”
Oct 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, October 17, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Shinichi Suzuki (1898). He taught children to play violin by listening and imitating, the way they learn to speak. A method that now bears his name, Suzuki Violin Method.
Oct 17, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, October 16, 2021
300
"An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all." -- Oscar Wilde, born on this day in 1854.
Oct 16, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, October 15, 2021
300
Novelist P.G. Wodehouse was born this day in 1881. Author of more than 100 books about Bertie Wooster and his butler Jeeves.
Oct 15, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, October 14, 2021
300
It's the birthday of poet E.E. Cummings (1884), and for his birthday we feature the poem “All in green went my love riding.”
Oct 14, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, October 13, 2021
300
Singer and songwriter Paul Simon celebrates his 80th birthday today. His first hit, with partner Art Garfunkel, was “The Sounds of Silence.”
Oct 13, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, October 12, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1892 that the Pledge of Allegiance was recited en masse for the first time, by more than 2 million students.
Oct 12, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, October 11, 2021
300
"You wouldn't worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do." – Eleanor Roosevelt, born October 11, 1884.
Oct 11, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, October 10, 2021
300
It's the birthday of playwright Harold Pinter (1930), whose use of dramatic pauses, noted in the text of his plays, has entered the dictionary as "Pinteresque."
Oct 10, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, October 9, 2021
300
John Lennon would have been 81 years old today. Songwriter of “Strawberry Fields Forever,” “Imagine,” and “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.”
Oct 09, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, October 8, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of the creator of the “Fear Street” and “Goosebumps” books. That’s R.L. Stine, who turns 78 years old today.
Oct 08, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, October 7, 2021
300
"It began in mystery, and it will end in mystery, but what a savage and beautiful country lies in between." Diane Ackerman. Celebrating her 73rd birthday today.
Oct 07, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, October 6, 2021
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California’s Redwood National Park was established on this day in 1968. These massive trees have this year been threatened by fires burning in California.
Oct 06, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, October 5, 2021
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On this day in 1877 Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce surrendered to the US Cavalry, and uttered the famous words, “My heart is sick and sad. From where the sun now stands I will fight no more forever.”
Oct 05, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, October 4, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of Buster Keaton (1895). Born to vaudevillian parents, he became a deadpan and impressively physical comedian.
Oct 04, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, October 3, 2021
300
"Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter what fork you use." --Emily Post, born Emily Price on this day in Baltimore, 1873.
Oct 03, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, October 2, 2021
301
The comic "Peanuts" by Charles M. Schulz, which brought the world the iconic characters of Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and Lucy, was first published on this day in 1950.
Oct 02, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, October 1, 2021
300
Today is the 97th birthday of President Jimmy Carter who has written more than 2 dozen books and won the Nobel Peace prize in his post-presidential career.
Oct 01, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, September 30, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of W. S. Merwin (1927), whose poetry was called “luminous, often tender poems that focus on the profound power of memory” by the Pulitzer Prize Committee.
Sep 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, September 29, 2021
300
The author of “Don Quixote,” Miguel de Cervantes, was born on this day in Alcalá de Henares (1547).
Sep 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, September 28, 2021
300
On this day in 1066 CE, William the Conqueror arrived on British soil. His rule brought the use of French at court and words such as mansion, beef, and royal entered the English language.
Sep 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, September 27, 2021
300
Rachel Carson’s groundbreaking book “Silent Spring” was published on this date in 1962. It exposed the environmental effects of pesticides to a wide audience.
Sep 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, September 26, 2021
300
“True music must reflect the thought and aspirations of the people and time. My people are Americans. My time is today.” --George Gershwin (1898)
Sep 26, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, September 25, 2021
300
Forty years ago today Sandra Day O'Connor was sworn in as a justice in the Supreme Court of the United States, becoming the first woman to hold that office.
Sep 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, September 24, 2021
300
“The loneliest moment in someone’s life is when they are watching their whole world fall apart, and all they can do is stare blankly.” ― F. Scott Fitzgerald, born on this day in 1896.
Sep 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, September 23, 2021
300
It's the birthday of Mongol emperor Kublai Khan born in Mongolia in 1215. The explorer Marco Polo’s journal contains most that is known about this ruler.
Sep 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, September 22, 2021
300
On this day in 1862 President Abraham Lincoln signed his preliminary Emancipation Proclamation. It did not not free all slaves, only those within the confederacy.
Sep 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, September 21, 2021
300
Steven King celebrates his 74th birthday today. When asked why he writes, he said "The answer to that is fairly simple — there was nothing else I was made to do."
Sep 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, September 20, 2021
300
On this day in 1973 Billie Jean King defeated Bobby Riggs in a tennis match that was billed as the “Battle of the Sexes.”
Sep 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, September 19, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1819 that 24-year-old John Keats wrote the ode "To Autumn."
Sep 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, September 18, 2021
300
On this day in 1870, the "Old Faithful" geyser in Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming was discovered by the Washburn-Langford-Doane Expedition.
Sep 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, September 17, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of poet William Carlos Williams (1883) who said, “A poem is a complete little universe.” We feature his poem “Pastoral.”
Sep 17, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, September 16, 2021
300
Lauren Bacall was born Betty Joan Perske on this day in New York City (1924). She met Humphrey Bogart in the 1944 movie “To Have and Have Not” and later married him.
Sep 16, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, September 15, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of Agatha Christie (1890). In the World Wars she worked at a hospital dispensary; this gave her a knowledge of drugs that she later used in her murder mysteries.
Sep 15, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, September 14, 2021
300
"No woman can call herself free until she can choose consciously whether she will or will not be a mother." – Margaret Sanger, born this day in 1879. Founder of Planned Parenthood.
Sep 14, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, September 13, 2021
300
"My imagination can picture no fairer happiness than to continue living for art."-- Clara Schumann, pianist and composer. Born Clara Wieck on this day in 1819.
Sep 13, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, September 12, 2021
300
Irène Joliot-Curie, daughter of Pierre and Marie Curie, was born in Paris on this day 1897. Like her mother, she won a Nobel Prize for her work with radioactive elements, and like her mother, she died of leukemia as a result of that work.
Sep 12, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, September 11, 2021
300
Twenty years ago 19 al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked four commercial airplanes intending to crash them into New York's World Trade Center, The Pentagon, and The White House. Three out of four-hit their targets and nearly 3000 people lost their lives.
Sep 11, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, September 10, 2021
300
Poet Mary Oliver was born on this day 1935. “One thing I do know is that poetry, to be understood, must be clear. It mustn’t be fancy.” She must have been right, as her poetry was consistently on the Best Sellers lists.
Sep 10, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, September 9, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of singer-songwriter Otis Redding (1941), known for soulful songs like “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay” and “Try a Little Tenderness.”
Sep 09, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, September 8, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1952 that Ernest Hemingway published “The Old Man and the Sea,” the last book published during his lifetime.
Sep 08, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, September 7, 2021
300
Anna Mary Robertson, the painter known as Grandma Moses, was born on this day 1860. Took up painting at age 77. Produced 115 paintings before her death at age 101.
Sep 07, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, September 6, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Alice Sebold (1963), who gets up every day at 4 a.m. to write because, she says, “If you start in the dark, the judges are all asleep.”
Sep 06, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, September 5, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1975 that Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme, a devoted follower of Charles Manson, pointed a loaded .45-caliber pistol at President Gerald Ford.
Sep 05, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, September 4, 2021
300
George Eastman received a patent for the first film camera, which he called Kodak, on this date in 1888. Later developing cellulose film, he eliminated the need for plates in photography.
Sep 04, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, September 3, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of the man who said, “Form follows function.” That’s American architect Louis Henry Sullivan, born in Boston (1856).
Sep 03, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, September 2, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1901 that Theodore Roosevelt uttered his famous words "Speak softly and carry a big stick" at the Minnesota State Fair.
Sep 02, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, September 1, 2021
300
This day, 1773, Phillis Wheatley published “Poems on Various Subjects Religious and Moral,” the first book ever published by a former American slave.
Sep 01, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, August 31, 2021
300
Manga artist Yumiko Oshima was born on this day, 1947. A member of the Year 24 Flower Group, who revolutionized “shojo manga,” comics for girls.
Aug 31, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, August 30, 2021
300
"Satire is the weapon of the powerless against the powerful." –Molly Ivins, born on this day 1944.
Aug 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, August 29, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Karen Hesse (1952). Published her first book “Wish on a Unicorn” at age 39 and won the 1998 Newbery Medal for her book “Out of the Dust.”
Aug 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, August 28, 2021
300
It is the 50th anniversary of the opening of the restaurant Chez Paisse. Opened by Berkley alum Alice Waters, who has written over a dozen cookbooks.
Aug 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, August 27, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of the man Stephen King once called "the Swiss watchmaker of suspense novels," Ira Levin (1929). His novels include “The Stepford Wives” and “Rosemary's Baby.”
Aug 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac -Thursday, August 26, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of the NASA Mathematician Katherine Johnson (1918) who ran the calculations for the moon missions by hand.
Aug 26, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, August 25, 2021
300
Today is the 100th birthday of the Irish novelist Brian Moore, not well known, he was respected by authors such as Graham Greene. He also wrote screenplays for people like Alfred Hitchcock.
Aug 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, August 24, 2021
300
“Gather ye rosebuds while ye may, / Old Time is still a-flying, / And this same flower that smiles to-day / To-morrow will be dying.” --Robert Herrick, baptized this day 1591.
Aug 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, August 23, 2021
300
It's the birthday of the author who gave us "The Spoon River Anthology," Edgar Le Masters (1868). The work lost him friends in Spoon River, but earned him enough to live as a writer.
Aug 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, August 22, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of novelist Annie Proulx (1935), who won the Pulitzer Prize for her second novel, “The Shipping News” (1993).
Aug 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, August 21, 2021
300
“Poetry…answers to no one, it crosses borders without a passport, and it speaks the truth... it is one of the most powerful of the arts."-- Ellen Hinsey, born in 1960.
Aug 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, August 20, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1940 that Winston Churchill delivered a speech to the House of Commons with the famous line: "Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few."
Aug 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, August 19, 2021
300
Today is the 100th birthday of Gene Roddenberry, most famous as the creator of “Star Trek,” the first sci-fi series to depict a generally peaceful future.
Aug 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, August 18, 2021
300
Vladimir Nabokov's “Lolita” was published in the United States on this day in 1958 and, in 1920, on this day the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution was ratified.
Aug 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, August 17, 2021
300
“…the physical body, so to speak, of poetry, is the treatment by which the poet tries to reconcile that pain with the world." –Ted Kooser, born on this day in 1930.
Aug 17, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, August 16, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Charles Bukowski, born in Germany in 1920. His first rejection note read, “Possibly we will print you sometime, but I don’t know exactly when. That depends on you.”
Aug 16, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, August 15, 2021
300
This day in 1969 the three-day concert known as Woodstock began. A beautiful weekend of music and togetherness in a time of societal anger and war.
Aug 15, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, August 14, 2021
300
It's the birthday of blockbuster best-selling romance novelist Danielle Steel (1947), who has written 185 books, 141 of which are novels.
Aug 14, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, August 13, 2021
300
It’s the 60th birthday of author Tom Perrotta, whose novel “The Leftovers,” a story of what happens to those left behind after the rapture, is also a successful television show.
Aug 13, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, August 12, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of investigative journalist Katherine Boo, 1984, who was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service in 2000 for articles around abuse of the intellectually disabled.
Aug 12, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, August 11, 2021
300
"I have no fancy idea about poetry. It's not like embroidery or painting or silk. It doesn't come to you on the wings of a dove. It's something you have to work hard at." – Louise Bogan (1897)
Aug 11, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, August 10, 2021
300
On this day in 1912 writer Virginia Stephen married Leonard Woolf in London. Their stable marriage enabled Virginia Woolf to flourish as a writer.
Aug 10, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, August 9, 2021
300
It is the birthday of science fiction author Daniel Keyes (1927). Keyes authored "Flowers for Algernon” which won the Hugo Award for Best Short Story in 1960.
Aug 09, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, August 8, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of American Novelist Valerie Sayers, 1952, whose advice to young writers is, "Have some fun. What the hell."
Aug 08, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, August 7, 2021
300
On this day in 1960 Ethiopian marathon runner Abebe Bikila became the first Black African to win an Olympic gold medal in any sport.
Aug 07, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, August 6, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of Sir Alexander Fleming, born in Scotland in 1881. He was a bacteriologist and discovered the antibacterial properties of penicillin.
Aug 06, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, August 5, 2021
300
It’s the 87th birthday of poet, novelist, and environmentalist Wendell Berry. He believes that art is not the most important thing in life, and you must keep it in perspective.
Aug 05, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, August 4, 2021
300
On this day in 1964 the bodies of three murdered civil rights workers were found in Mississippi. The murders influenced passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Aug 04, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, August 3, 2021
300
"Much of our lives involves the word 'no….But art is the big yes. In art, you get a chance to make something where there was nothing." –Marvin Bell, poet, born 1937.
Aug 03, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, August 2, 2021
300
On this day in 1776 the Declaration of Independence was signed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, not on the fourth of July as is popularly believed.
Aug 02, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, August 1, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of Maria Mitchell, born in 1818. A devoted anti-slavery activist and suffragette, she became the first acknowledged female astronomer.
Aug 01, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, July 31, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of poet Kim Addonizio, born in 1954. We feature her poem “High Desert, New Mexico.”
Jul 31, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, July 30, 2021
300
Author of “Wuthering Heights,” Emily Brontë was born on this day, 1818
Jul 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, July 29, 2021
300
Poet Stanley Kunitz was born on this day in 1905 in in Worcester, Massachusetts. He was appointed the poet laureate of the United States when he was 95 years old.
Jul 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, July 28, 2021
300
"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." – Karl Popper, born 1902
Jul 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, July 27, 2021
300
"When I am dead, I hope it may be said: His sins were scarlet, but his books were read." –Hilaire Belloc, born 1870
Jul 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, July 26, 2021
300
"The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them: That's the essence of inhumanity." –George Bernard Shaw, born 1856
Jul 26, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, July 25, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1972 that Jean Heller of the Associated Press broke the news that the federal government had let hundreds of Black men in rural Alabama go untreated for syphilis for 40 years in the now infamous Tuskegee study.
Jul 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, July 24, 2021
300
Poet Robert Graves was born on this day in 1895. He is well known as well for his historical novels, but always preferred poetry.
Jul 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, July 23, 2021
300
“Each one of you can change the world, for you are made of star stuff, and you are connected to the universe.” – Vera Rubin, American Astronomer. Born 1928.
Jul 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, July 22, 2021
300
Author of “Even Cowgirls Get the Blues” and “Jitterbug Perfume,” Tom Robbins celebrates his 89th birthday today.
Jul 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, July 21, 2021
300
"Do not worry. You have always written before and you will write now. All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know” - Ernest Hemingway, born 1899.
Jul 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, July 20, 2021
300
The first Special Olympics were held in Chicago on this day in 1968. Organized by Eunice Kennedy Shriver and inspired by her love for her sister Rosemary, who was intellectually disabled.
Jul 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, July 19, 2021
300
On this date in 1799 French soldiers discovered the Rosetta Stone. Containing the same message in Ancient Greek, demotic, and hieroglyphics, it enabled deciphering ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs.
Jul 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, July 18, 2021
300
Nadia Comaneci, the first gymnast to be given a “Perfect 10,” was born on this day in Romaina, 1976. She is the author of a memoir, “Letters to a Young Gymnast.”
Jul 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, July 17, 2021
300
Comedian and actress Phyllis Diller was born on this day in 1917. She donated her jokes to the Smithsonian, more than 50,000 of them.
Jul 17, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, July 16, 2021
300
This day in 1862, Ida B Wells was born into slavery in Mississippi. She became a journalist and activist supporting women’s sufferage and exposing the lynchings of African Americans.
Jul 16, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, July 15, 2021
300
The first U.S. citizen to become a saint, Frances Xavier Cabrini, was born on this day in 1850 in Italy. She and her fellow Sisters aided the Italian immigrants of New York City.
Jul 15, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, July 14, 2021
300
“Anyone who uses more than two chords is just showing off.” – Woody Guthrie. Guthrie, an American troubadour, was born this day 1912.
Jul 14, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, July 13, 2021
300
Today we remember the birth in 1793 of the English Poet John Clare. A success in his own time, success could not save him from a life of madness.
Jul 13, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, July 12, 2021
300
Henry David Thoreau was born on this day in 1817. His classic work “Walden” was written while living on property owned by Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Jul 12, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, July 11, 2021
300
The author of “Stuart Little” and “Charlotte's Web”, E.B. White, was born on this day 1899. He was also a prolific essayist and contributor to the New Yorker magazine.
Jul 11, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, July 10, 2021
300
It’s the 90th birthday of Alice Munro, a Canadian short-story writer who won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2013.
Jul 10, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, July 9, 2021
300
Neurologist and author Oliver Sacks was born on this day in 1933. He wrote about complicated medical mysteries of the brain to appeal beyond academia.
Jul 09, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, July 8, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of the columnist and best-selling novelist Anna Quindlen (1953), author of “How Reading Changed My Life” and “A Short Guide to a Happy Life.”
Jul 08, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, July 7, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of American genetics pioneer Nettie Stevens (1861) who discovered that the combinations XX and XY in chromosomes determined the sex of an organism.
Jul 07, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, July 6, 2021
300
Louis Pasteur successfully tested his rabies vaccine on this day in 1885 on a nine-year-old boy named Joseph Meister who was bitten by a rabid dog.
Jul 06, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, July 5, 2021
300
“Listen carefully to first criticisms made of your work… then cultivate it. That’s the only part of your work that’s individual and worth keeping.” -- Jean Cocteau, born 1889.
Jul 05, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, July 4, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of Nathaniel Hawthorne, 1804. Author of “The Scarlett Letter” one of the first mass-produced books in America.
Jul 04, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, July 3, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of Franz Kafka (1883), author of “The Metamorphosis” which reads “Calm —indeed the calmest— reflection might be better than the most confused decisions.”
Jul 03, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, July 2, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1937 that pilot Amelia Earhart was last heard from, somewhere over the Pacific. Her last transmission was,"We are running north and south."
Jul 02, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, July 1, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of the “father of gospel music,” Thomas A. Dorsey, born in Villa
Rica, Georgia, in 1899.
Jul 01, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, June 30, 2021
300
Nobel Prize winning poet Czeslaw Milosz was born on this day in Lithuania, 1911. He once said, “Language is the only homeland.”
Jun 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, June 29, 2021
300
Today in the year 1900 French writer and aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was born in France (1900). A pilot turned writer of the children’s novella, “Le Petit Prince.”
Jun 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, June 28, 2021
300
In the early hours of this day in 1969 the Stonewall riots broke out in New York City, marking the beginning of the gay rights movement.
Jun 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, June 27, 2021
300
On this day in 1787 English historian Edward Gibbon completed the final volume of The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.
Jun 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, June 26, 2021
300
It's the birthday of writer Pearl S. Buck (1892), Nobel Prize-winning author of “The Good Earth,” published 90 years ago.
Jun 26, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, June 25, 2021
300
Today would have been the 92nd birthday of Eric Carle, author of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” and many other children’s books. He died May 23, 2021.
Jun 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, June 24, 2021
300
“I just went on writing it (English) because I always wanted to belong to this world of books."-- Anita Desai, novelist, born this day in 1937.
Jun 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, June 23, 2021
300
It's the birthday of the Russian poet Anna Akhmatova, 1889. Came to fame for the poems of her love affair, and later, after her son’s imprisonment, wrote a 10-poem cycle "Requiem."
Jun 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, June 22, 2021
300
Erich Maria Remarque , author of the anti-war novel “All Quiet on the Western Front “ was born this day in 1898.
Jun 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, June 21, 2021
300
“Money may not buy happiness, but I'd rather cry in a Jaguar than on a bus.” -- French novelist and playwright Françoise Sagan, born this day in 1958.
Jun 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, June 20, 2021
300
On this day in 1893, Lizzie Borden was acquitted of the hatchet murders of her father and stepmother at their home in Fall River, Massachusetts, about 50 miles south of Boston.
Jun 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, June 19, 2021
300
Today is Juneteenth, also known as "Freedom Day" or "Emancipation Day." It's a holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.
Jun 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, June 18, 2021
300
On this day in 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte met his final defeat at the Battle of Waterloo, in Belgium.
Jun 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, June 17, 2021
300
“99 percent of every beautiful thing you ever knew escaped and went back out into the world where you vaguely remembered it.”― Ron Padgett, born this day in 1942.
Jun 17, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, June 16, 2021
300
Today is "Bloomsday," the annual celebration of that 1904 day featured in James Joyce's novel Ulysses. Named after protagonist Leopold Bloom, the book follows him during an ordinary day in Dublin.
Jun 16, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, June 15, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of one of the masters of the Japanese form of poetry called haiku, Japanese poet Kobayashi Issa (1736).
Jun 15, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, June 14, 2021
300
It’s the birthday of Harriet Beecher Stowe (1811), abolitionist author of “Uncle Tom's Cabin; or, Life Among the Lowly.”
Jun 14, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, June 13, 2021
300
On this day in 1967 President Lyndon Johnson named the first African-American justice, Thurgood Marshall, to the Supreme Court.
Jun 13, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, June 12, 2021
300
"Readers are plentiful; thinkers are rare." A quote by sociologist and writer Harriet Martineau, born this day in England, 1802.
Jun 12, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, June 11, 2021
300
Ben Jonson, author, playwright, friend of William Shakespeare, was born on this day in London, probably in 1572.
Jun 11, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, June 10, 2021
300
Pulitzer Prize winning novelist Saul Bellow was born on this day in 1913. “Human beings can lose their lives in libraries. They ought to be warned.”
Jun 10, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, June 9, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of the man who wrote the songs "I Get a Kick Out of You," "You're the Top," and "Let's Do It, Let's Fall In Love": Cole Porter (1891).
Jun 09, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, June 8, 2021
300
It's the birthday of best-selling crime novelist Sara Paretsky (1947), who invented a smart, sexual, hard-boiled female detective, V.I. Warshawski, in her novel “Indemnity Only.”
Jun 08, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, June 7, 2021
300
“Writers don’t write from experience … If you wrote from experience, you’d get maybe one book, maybe three poems. Writers write from empathy.” -- Nikki Giovanni (1943)
Jun 07, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, June 6, 2021
300
Poet Maxine Kumin was born this day in 1925. She said, "Until the Women's Movement, it was commonplace to be told by an editor that he'd like to publish more of my poems, but he'd already published one by a woman that month."
Jun 06, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, June 5, 2021
300
Harriet Beecher Stowe's “Uncle Tom's Cabin” began its serial run in abolitionist newspaper the National Era on this date in 1851.
Jun 05, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, June 4, 2021
300
The Nineteenth Amendment was originally drafted by Susan B. Anthony. On June 4, 1919 it passed the Senate, sending it to the states for ratification. Fifteen months later it was ratified, giving American women the right to vote.
Jun 04, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, June 3, 2021
300
"Poetry is not an expression of the party line. It's that time of night, lying in bed, thinking what you really think, making the private world public, that's what the poet does." -- Allen Ginsberg (1926)
Jun 03, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, June 2, 2021
300
Novelist and poet Thomas Hardy was born on this day in 1840. A risky and bold writer, his works are said to have a “painterly” quality that lends them well to becoming films.
Jun 02, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, June 1, 2021
300
One hundred years ago today in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the thriving black neighborhood of Greenwood was destroyed, its population massacred by an angry white mob. No one was ever prosecuted.
Jun 01, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, May 31, 2021
300
This Memorial Day has us remember Walt Whitman on his birthday with a poem written for civil war soldiers and remembering Whitman’s service caring for them on the battlefield.
May 31, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, May 30, 2021
300
It was on this day in 1431 that Joan of Arc was burned at the stake for heresy in Rouen, France. A pesant girl, who heard the voice of god, and rose to lead an army.
May 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, May 29, 2021
300
"When power leads man toward arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations." – John F. Kennedy, born on this day in 1917.
May 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, May 28, 2021
300
“Youth is given. One must put it away/like a doll in a closet,/take it out and play with it only/on holidays.” May Swenson, born this day in 1913.
May 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, May 27, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Julia Ward Howe (1819). A writer, a suffragist, and an abolitionist. Best known for the lyrics to “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”
May 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, May 26, 2021
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Today marks 70 years since the birth of Sally Ride (1951-2012). The first American woman in space, who remembered space as “The most fun I will ever have in my life.”
May 26, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, May 25, 2021
300
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson, born this day in 1903.
May 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, May 24, 2021
300
It’s the 80th birthday of Robert Zimmerman, better known as Bob Dylan. The Poet musician won the Nobel Prize in literature in 2016.
May 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, May 23, 2021
300
Today marks the birth of poet Jane Kenyon (1974). She said, “Be a good steward of your gifts. Protect your time. Feed your inner life.”
May 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, May 22, 2021
300
“Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” premiered on this day in 1967. The creation of Fred Rogers, a minister and puppeteer, who spoke to children of peace, patience, and diversity.
May 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, May 21, 2021
300
One hundred forty years ago Clara Barton founded the American Red Cross after caring for the wounded in the U.S. Civil War and recognizing the need for aid was more than government could provide.
May 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, May 20, 2021
300
Honoré de Balzac was born this day in 1799. A prolific novelist and playwright, he is recognized as one of the fathers of literary realism.
May 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, May 19, 2021
300
Today would have been the 80th birthday of Nora Ephron, author of classic movies such as When Harry Met Sally (1989), and Sleepless in Seattle (1993). She said, “Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.”
May 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, May 18, 2021
300
Today is the birthday of Tina Fey (1970) an actress and writer of humor for print, stage, and screen. She said in her book “Bossypants,” “Do your thing and don't care if they like it."
May 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, May 17, 2021
300
Author Gary Paulsen is celebrating his 82nd birthday today. Author of “Hatchet” and “Dogsong” and other books mostly about coming of age and the wilderness.
May 17, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, May 16, 2021
300
"Poetry is the liquid voice that can wear through stone." –Adrienne Rich, born May 16, 1929.
May 16, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, May 15, 2021
300
"The Dyings have been too deep for me, and before I could raise my heart from one, another has come." –Emily Dickinson, died May 15, 1886.
May 15, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, May 14, 2021
300
“It might be possible that the world itself is without meaning,” and “To love makes one solitary.” – quotes from “Mrs Dalloway” published May 14, 1925.
May 14, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, May 13, 2021
300
The first American colony, Jamestown, was founded on this day 1607 in the territory of the Powhatan Algonquian people.
May 13, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, May 12, 2021
300
“Writing, getting something down on the page, is a gratification that, like a child faced with a candy bar and an empty stomach, I have trouble postponing.” –Rosellen Brown, 1939
May 12, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, May 11, 2021
300
It was on this day in the year 868 A.D. that the Diamond Sutra was printed. It is the world's oldest book bearing a specific date of publication.
May 11, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, May 10, 2021
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It's the birthday of Suzan-Lori Parks (1963), the first African-American playwright to win the Pulitzer Prize for drama, for her play Topdog/Underdog in 2002.
May 10, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, May 9, 2021
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It’s the 100th birthday of Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Mona Van Duyn (1921). She said, "I believe that good poetry can be as ornate as a cathedral or as bare as a pottingshed, as long as it confronts the self with honesty and fullness.”
May 09, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, May 8, 2021
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Poet and Zen practitioner Gary Snyder, was born in San Francisco on this day in 1930. His most recent book is one of essays, “The Practice of the Wild,” published in 2020.
May 08, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, May 7, 2021
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Today is the birthday of Johannes Brahms (1833), Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1876), and Robert Browning (1812).
May 07, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, May 6, 2021
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On this day in 1935 Franklin Roosevelt created the Works Progress Administration. The WPA employed 8.5 million out-of-work people on 1.4 million individual projects.
May 06, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, May 5, 2021
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Nellie Bly was born May 5th, 1864. She reinvented investigative journalism with her exposé on life in a New York asylum, to which she got herself committed for ten days.
May 05, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, May 4, 2021
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Horace Mann was born this day in 1796. An advocate of public education and an opponent of slavery, he said, “Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity.”
May 04, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, May 2, 2021
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Almost 500 years later we’re still talking about her. On this day in 1536 Anne Boleyn was arrested and imprisoned for high treason, incest, and adultery.
May 02, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, May 1, 2021
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The author of the novel “Catch-22” Joseph Heller was born in Brooklyn on this day in 1923.
May 01, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, April 30, 2021
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It’s the birthday of writer Annie Dillard (1945). She read voraciously as a child and has said, “I opened books like jars.” Her latest is “The Abundance: Narrative Essays Old and New” (2016).
Apr 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, April 29, 2021
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American soldiers liberated 30,000 prisoners from a concentration camp in Dachau, Germany on this date in 1945. It was the first concentration camp the Nazis established.
Apr 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, April 28, 2021
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Today marks the birth of Harper Lee in 1926. Her book “To Kill a Mockingbird” won the Pulitzer Prize and introduces many young people to the harsh realities of racism in America.
Apr 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, April 27, 2021
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Playwright August Wilson was born on this day in 1945. For decades he brought black voices to the stage, and this past year his play “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” was released as a film.
Apr 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, April 26, 2021
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American performer Carol Burnett turns 88 today. Best known for her variety show “The Carol Burnett Show,” and to younger people as Ms. Hannigan from the musical “Annie.”
Apr 26, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, April 25, 2021
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Poet Ted Kooser turns 82 today. On why he started writing poetry as a teenager he said, “I was desperately interested in being interesting.”
Apr 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, April 24, 2021
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Author Anthony Trollope was born this day in London, 1815. On writing he said, “A small daily task, if it be really daily, will beat the labors of a spasmodic Hercules.”
Apr 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, April 23, 2021
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William Shakespere is believed to have been born on this day in 1564. He gave us the phrases "dead as a doornail," "come what may," "heart's content,” and "wild goose chase."
Apr 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, April 22, 2021
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“Writing is a kind of revenge against circumstance too: bad luck, loss, pain. If you make something out of it, then you’ve no longer been bested by these events.”-- Louise Glück (1943
Apr 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, April 21, 2021
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Today is the 105th birthday of Charlotte Brontë, author of “Jane Eyre” and the last of the literary Brontë siblings to walk this earth.
Apr 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, April 20, 2021
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Today we feature the poem “I Can’t Stop Loving You John Keats” by Kim Addonizio, from her new collection “Now We’re Getting Somewhere.”
Apr 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, April 19, 2021
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On this day in 1824, British poet Lord Byron died while fighting in the Greek War of Independence. A romantic poet, playboy, rogue, Byron’s spirit lives on in the poetic imagination.
Apr 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, April 18, 2021
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It’s birthday of the man who inspired the word "beatnik," poet Bob Kaufman. A man who aspired to be forgotten and was frequently arrested for shouting his poetry in public.
Apr 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, April 17, 2021
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According to legend, it was on this day in 1397 that Geoffrey Chaucer recited The Canterbury Tales to the court of Richard II.
Apr 17, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, April 16, 2021
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Gertrude Chandler Warner, born this day in 1890, gave the world “The Boxcar Children,” a series that has continued to capture the imagination of children to this day
Apr 16, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, April 15, 2021
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Today we feature a poem by Barbara Quick, “Conjuring Nana.” A vision of childhood, memories of family.
Apr 15, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, April 14, 2021
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Today is the birthday of Anne Sullivan (1866), who was the governess to Hellen Keller, teaching her to communicate.
Apr 14, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, April 13, 2021
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One hundred fifteen years ago today the author Samuel Becket was born. His play Waiting for Godot changed the theatrical landscape.
Apr 13, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, April 12, 2021
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Today we remember Beverly Cleary on what would have been her 105th birthday. She died just 18 days ago. Her legacy, bringing children books about regular kids, just like them.
Apr 12, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, April 11, 2021
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Marguerite de Navarre was born in 1492. A writer of verse, prayers, plays, and religious meditations, she promoted the reformation from a privileged place, as sister to King François I of France.
Apr 11, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, April 10, 2021
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F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic “The Great Gatsby” was published on this day in 1925. This year it entered the public domain, joining Fitzgeralds' works “This Side of Paradise” and “The Beautiful and the Damned”.
Apr 10, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, April 9, 2021
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It’s the birthday of scientist Gregory Goodwin Pincus (1903). He co-invented the first oral contraceptive pill with Dr. Min-Chueh Chang, work supported by activist Margaret Sanger.
Apr 09, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, April 8, 2021
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“I’m not a risk-taker in life, generally speaking, but as a writer I definitely choose the fast car, the impossible rock face, the free fall.”—Barbara Kingsolver, born this day in 1955.
Apr 08, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, April 7, 2021
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Poet William Wordsworth was born on this day in England, 1770. We feature his poem “I Have Thoughts that Are Fed by the Sun” for his birthday.
Apr 07, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, April 6, 2021
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Today is the birthday of musician Merle Haggard (1937) who gave the world 250 original songs, including “Mama Tried,” “Hungry Eyes,” and “Workin’ Man Blues.”
Apr 06, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, April 5, 2021
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Dr. Hattie Alexander was born in Baltimore (1901). An American pediatrician and microbiologist who developed the vaccine, known as Hib, to prevent influenzal meningitis.
Apr 05, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, April 4, 2021
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This Easter marks the birthday of two American icons: poet, writer, and activist Maya Angelou (1928), and blues musician and songwriter Muddy Waters (1915).
Apr 04, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, April 3, 2021
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Today is the birthday of author and illustrator Sandra Keith Boynton, 1953. She began her career writing greeting cards, developing her humor and the cohort of animals that populate her dozens of childrens books.
Apr 03, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, April 2, 2021
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Today is the birthday of Giacomo Casanova (1725). He wrote 12 volumes of autobiography, leaving posterity the best record we have of 18th-century society and its customs, and his own womanizing.
Apr 02, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, April 1, 2021
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Anne McCaffrey was born on this day 1926. A pioneer for women in science fiction writing, she was the first female winner of both the Hugo and Nebula awards.
Apr 01, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, March 31, 2021
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Today marks the 85th birthday of Marge Piercy. Author, feminist, and social activist, her latest work is one of poetry, “On the Way Out, Turn Off the Light.”
Mar 31, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, March 30, 2021
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A friend of students and writers, the common pencils with attached eraser was patented this day 1858 by Hymen Lipman. A single pencil can write around 45,000 words.
Mar 30, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, March 29, 2021
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It was on this day in 1944 that Anne Frank made the decision to rewrite her diary as an autobiography so that history might understand what the Jews of Europe had suffered.
Mar 29, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, March 28, 2021
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“The Devil Wears Prada” author Lauren Weisberger celebrates her 44th birthday today. Her a seventh novel, “Where The Grass Is Green And The Girls Are Pretty,” will be released in May.
Mar 28, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, March 27, 2021
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On this date in 1915, Mary Mallon, better known as "Typhoid Mary," was put into quarantine for the first time. A healthy carrier of the Salmonella typhi bacteria, her work as a cook caused multiple outbreaks and deaths.
Mar 27, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, March 26, 2021
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One hundred ten years ago today playwright and author Tennessee Williams was born, 1911. The conflict and pain of his life inspired his plays. He said, “If I got rid of my demons, I’d lose my angels.”
Mar 26, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, March 25, 2021
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Author Flannery O’Connor was born on this day in 1925. A woman of strong opinions, her writing was equally fierce and frequently examined questions of morality through morally flawed characters.
Mar 25, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, March 24, 2021
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Poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti died just a little over one month ago. Today he would have been 102. A poem, he said, “should arise to ecstasy somewhere between speech and song.”
Mar 24, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Tuesday, March 23, 2021
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Today in 1877 writer Josef Čapek was born. Josef invented the word “robot” for a play he wrote about mass-produced human substitutes who are employed as cheap labor.
Mar 23, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Monday, March 22, 2021
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Billy Collins is 80 years old today! Friend and one-time host of The Writer’s Almanac, Billy has been producing The Poetry Broadcast videos on Facebook during the pandemic. He also released a new collection “Whale Day” in September 2020.
Mar 22, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Sunday, March 21, 2021
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Today is the birthday of Johann Sebastian Bach, born in Eisenach, Germany (1685). Known in his day not as a composer but as a skilled organist and repairer of organs.
Mar 21, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Saturday, March 20, 2021
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“It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, a beautiful day for a neighbor. Would you be mine? Could you be mine?” Written by Fred Rogers who was born this day in 1928.
Mar 20, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Friday, March 19, 2021
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One hundred years ago today adventurer, translator, and writer Richard Francis Burton, was born. His accomplishments include translating both “The Arabian Nights” and “The Kama Sutra."
Mar 19, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Thursday, March 18, 2021
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“At the point where you get your writerly vocation you diminish your receptivity to experience. Being able to write becomes a kind of shield, a way of hiding, a way of too instantly transforming pain into honey.” John Updike (1932-2009)
Mar 18, 2021
The Writer's Almanac - Wednesday, March 17, 2021
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