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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

July 31 Birthday Meme

This time last year, I asked my class,"Who can tell me whose birthday it is today?" One of my students, the younger brother of my previous student, book clubber Dylan, called out,"My brother's!"  and of course, it was, and I felt sorry I had forgotten. If you read this, Dylan, hope it was wonderful!

But I had someone else in mind, someone whose writing had not only given a lot of children and teens great pleasure, but who had persuaded adults to read children's books and see how good they are. I meant J.K. Rowling, of course, and I posted about it, and alas, hardly anyone read it at the time, so if you want to read a great post on this subject, check out my archives for this date in 2012.

So tonight, as my last post for July, I will use other things that happened in July. There are plenty of them, but I will skip the disasters and the battles and just mention a couple of book-related incidents.

According to Wikipedia, in 1703, poor Daniel Defoe, author of Robinson Crusoe, journalist and spy, got into trouble for writing something satirical and was put into the pillory, where normally people were pelted with disgusting stuff, but he was pelted with flowers! Nice to know he had fans in his lifetime, though while I was researching him for my children's book on spies, Your Cat Could Be A Spy, I read that he spent a lot of time running away from his creditors and when he died, nobody bothered to turn up to the funeral. Still, he was quite a character, and I have no trouble imagining him writing things that the powers that be didn't like!

A sad thing that happened on July 31 in this century was the death of Poul Anderson, spec fic writer extraordinaire. I love his books. I have found, over the years, that whatever I was in the mood for, he'd written a book about it, whether it was SF, high fantasy, humour, space opera, adventure, romance. And he was a top filker, too. And big in the SCA. I discovered him in my twenties and have never lost my love for his work, though some books are better than others, but hey, when you write as many novels and short stories as he did some are bound to be better than others.

So, hurray for July 31!

Anyone else got a bookish July 31 event?


Tariro Thando Bhebe said...

Don't worry I forgot too. AND IT WAS IN MY DIARY. Happy birthday Dylan. <3

Sue Bursztynski said...

I'm sure you made it up to him, Thando! :) And VCE is a stressful time, I wouldn't be surprised if HE forgot it.