Author biography

Margery Williams Bianco, Author of The Velveteen Rabbit

Margery Williams Bianco (July 22, 1881 – September 4, 1944) was a British-American author and translator, best known for children’s books. Her most enduring work is The Velveteen Rabbit (1922). She received the Newbery Honor for Winterbound.

Margery William’s interest in writing was fueled by the encouragement she received from her father. As a renowned barrister and scholar, her father inspired his daughters to read and write, and by extension, fueled her passion to become a writer. Read More→

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Eulalie Spence, Playwright of the Harlem Renaissance Era

Eulalie Spence (June 11, 1894 – March 7, 1981) was an award-winning American playwright, stage director, actress, and educator. As a prolific Black writer in the first half of the twentieth century, Spence was most active during the Harlem Renaissance era.

She was so esteemed and  prolific in her heyday that her relative obscurity today is unfathomable. Like many of her contemporaries who blossomed during the Harlem Renaissance years, she was multitalented — a writer and playwright, as well as an actress and teacher. She authored some fourteen plays, five of which were preserved in print; nearly all were staged. 

An immigrant from the British West Indies, Spence went against the prevailing trend of her time among Black creatives, which was to use the arts in all forms to press for racial justice. She believed that plays were for entertainment and considered herself a “folk dramatist.”  Read More→

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Marguerite Duras, author of The Lover

Marguerite Duras (April 4, 1914 – March 3, 1996), born Marguerite Germaine Marie Donnadieu, was a French novelist, screenwriter, playwright, filmmaker, and essayist.

Her work was largely shaped by her childhood in present-day Vietnam and received several awards, including the Prix Goncourt for her novel The Lover, and an Academy Award nomination for the screenplay of Hiroshima Mon Amour.

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Anita Brookner, author of Hotel du Lac

Do you know of anyone who wrote twenty-six novels after a successful career as a professor and art historian? Or who won the prestigious Booker Prize for her fourth novel? All that is true of British author Anita Brookner (July 16, 1928 – March 10, 2016), which is why I enjoy her books so much — she entertains as well as educates.

I liken Brookner’s beautifully crafted stories to fine needlework, and I’ve recently started collecting her books, as I know I will reread them over the years.    Read More→

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bell hooks, Poet, Essayist, & Public Intellectual

In her lifetime of sixty-nine years, bell hooks (born Gloria Jean Watkins, September 25, 1952 – December 15, 2021) became internationally recognized and highly acclaimed as a prolific writer, beloved poet, university professor, public intellectual, social activist, and cultural critic. Photo at right courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Her legacy of written work (which included forty books) and her contributions to the public discourse on the intersectionality of race, gender, love, feminism, and capitalism is inestimable.

Margaret Atwood, author of The Handmaid’s Tale stated, “Her impact extended far beyond the United States; many women from all over the world owe her a great debt.” Read More→

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