A Weekly Literary Celebration: LitBash 2

Writers who were born, or died, this coming week. Read books, and meet the fascinating people who wrote them. Above all read, because, as Charles Eliot said: “Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counsellors, and the most patient of teachers.”

Born this week:

Stephen Leacock, Writer.
“I detest life-insurance agents: they always argue that I shall some day die, which is not so.”

Paul Bowles, Writer.
“I think we all really thrive on hostility, because it’s the most intense kind of massage the ego can undergo.”

Horacio Quiroga, Writer.
He wrote stories which, in their jungle settings, use the supernatural and the bizarre to show the struggle of man and animal to survive. He also excelled in portraying mental illness and hallucinatory states. His influence can be seen in the Latin American magic realism of Gabriel García Márquez and the postmodern surrealism of Julio Cortázar.

Fumiko Hayashi, Writer.
Many of her works revolve around themes of free spirited women and troubled relationships.

Veijo Meri, Writer.
Author of a series of anti-war novels.

Mariano Azuela, Writer.
A follower of Pancho Villa, he wrote a novel, first-hand description of combat during the Mexican revolution.

J.D. Salinger, Writer.
“There is a marvelous peace in not publishing. … It’s peaceful. Still. Publishing is a terrible invasion of my privacy. I like to write. I live to write. But I write just for myself and my own pleasure. … I don’t necessarily intend to publish posthumously, but I do like to write for myself. … I pay for this kind of attitude. I’m known as a strange, aloof kind of man. But all I’m doing is trying to protect myself and my work.”

Isaak Asimov, Writer.
“The true artist is quite rational as well as imaginative and knows what he is doing; if he does not, his art suffers. The true scientist is quite imaginative as well as rational, and sometimes leaps to solutions where reason can follow only slowly; if he does not, his science suffers.”

Died this week:

Theodore Dreiser, Writer.
“The most futile thing in this world is any attempt, perhaps, at exact definition of character. All individuals are a bundle of contradictions — none more so than the most capable.”

Susan Sontag, Writer.
“The truth is always something that is told, not something that is known. If there were no speaking or writing, there would be no truth about anything. There would only be what is.”

Romain Rolland, Writer.
“Be reverent before the dawning day. Do not think of what will be in a year, or in ten years. Think of to-day. Leave your theories. All theories, you see, even those of virtue, are bad, foolish, mischievous. Do not abuse life. Live in to-day. Be reverent towards each day.”

Aleksis Kivi, Writer.
Noted for the first significant novel written in Finnish and by a Finnish-speaking author.

Paul Adam, Writer.
Wrote a series of historical novels that dealt with the period of the Napoleonic Wars and their aftermath.

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