Suspense Writers

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1.
Richard Matheson
Writer, I Am Legend
Richard Matheson has written novels and short stories, as well as screenplays for both film and television. He has sometimes written under the pen name, "Logan Swanson". His prose has often been adapted for the screen by others and sometimes by Matheson, himself. Notably, he is among the few writers who contributed to Rod Serling's classic television series...
 
2.
Charles Beaumont
Writer, Brain Dead
Charles Beaumont was the pseudonym for Charles Leroy Nutt, born on Chicago's North Side on January 2 1929. He also occasionally wrote under the names Charles McNutt and E.T. Beaumont (the latter apparently based on the name of a Texas town). Tragically short-lived, Beaumont was a dynamic and imaginative author and screenwriter of macabre...
 
3.
Ray Bradbury
Ray Bradbury was an American science fiction writer whose works were translated in more than 40 languages and sold millions of copies around the world. Although he created a world of new technical and intellectual ideas, he never obtained a driver's license and had never driven a car. He was born Ray Douglas Bradbury on August 22...
 
4.
H.G. Wells
H.G. Wells, born in the London suburb of Bromley in 1866, began his literary career in earnest in 1895 with the publication of his first novel, "The Time Machine." Until this first success his life had been a patchwork of unsatisfactory drapery and chemist apprenticeships that were interrupted by stints as a teacher's assistant...
 
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Stephen King
Stephen Edwin King was born on September 21, 1947, at the Maine General Hospital in Portland. His parents were Nellie Ruth (Pillsbury), who worked as a caregiver at a mental institute, and Donald Edwin King, a merchant seaman. His father was born under the surname "Pollock", but used the last name "King"...
 
8.
Edgar Allan Poe
Edgar Allan Poe was born on January 19, 1809, in Boston, Massachusetts. His father, named David Poe Jr., and his mother, named Elizabeth Arnold Hopkins Poe, were touring actors. Both parents died in 1811, and Poe became an orphan before he was 3 years old. He was adopted by John Allan, a tobacco merchant in Richmond...
 
10.
H.P. Lovecraft
Born in Providence, Lovecraft was a sickly child whose parents died insane. When he was 16, he wrote the astronomy column in the Providence Tribune. Between 1908 and 1923, he wrote short stories for Weird Tales magazine, among others. He died in Providence, in poverty, on March 15, 1937. His most famous novel is considered to be "At the Mountains of Madness," about an expedition to the South Pole...
 
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Mary Shelley
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (née Godwin; 30 August 1797 - 1 February 1851) was an English novelist, short story writer, dramatist, essayist, biographer, and travel writer, best known for her Gothic novel "Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus" (1818). She also edited and promoted the works of her husband...
 
14.
Tom Clancy
Tom Clancy became one of the best-selling writers of the late 20th and early 21st Centuries, starting with the publication of his 1984 thriller, The Hunt for Red October. Born in Baltimore to a U.S. Post Office employee and his wife on April 12, 1947, Clancy graduated from Loyola Blakefield, a Catholic private high school...
 
15.
Harlan Ellison
Miscellaneous Crew, Babylon 5
Harlan Ellison was raised in Ohio by Serita Rosenthal Ellison and Louis Laverne Ellison. He has an older sister, Beverly. Mr. Ellison has been married five times. He lives in Sherman Oaks at "Ellison Wonderland". He has had the same address and phone number for twenty-six years. He is a non-smoker, non-drinker and has never used drugs.
 
16.
John Grisham
A graduate of Mississippi State University and Ole Miss Law School, John Grisham obtained his law degree in 1981 and practiced law for about 10 years, specializing in criminal defense and personal injury litigation. He was elected to the Mississippi House of Representatives in 1983 and served until 1990...
 
17.
Robert A. Heinlein
At the age of 17, Heinlein graduated from Central High School in Kansas City, Missouri. He spent one year at the University of Missouri before he entered the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, from which he graduated as the 20th best among the 243 cadets. He spent five years in the Pacific Ocean until he had to retire because of tuberculosis in 1934...
 
18.
Rod Serling
John Phillips is the name used by longtime television and film writer Rod Serling when he asked that his real name be removed as the writer of the pilot episode of the series "The New People" in 1969. While Serling's name remained as series developer, he was sufficiently annoyed with ABC- TV's editing of the pilot-- it was cut from 52 to 45 minutes to fit into a 90 minute time slot...
 
19.
Jack Finney
Walter Braden "Jack" Finney was an American writer, mainly known for his contributions to the science-fiction genre. His most popular novels are "The Body Snatchers" (1955) and "Time and Again} (1970), although throughout his career he published nearly 50 novels that encompass the noir, thriller and comedy genres...
 
20.
Philip K. Dick
Writer, Blade Runner
Philip Kindred Dick was born in Chicago in December 1928, along with a twin sister, Jane. Jane died less than eight weeks later, allegedly from an allergy to mother's milk. Dick's parents split up during his childhood, and he moved with his mother to Berkeley, California, where he lived for most of the rest of his life...
 
21.
Alexandre Dumas
His paternal grandparents were Marie Cessete Dumas (a Haitian slave) and Marquis Antoine Davy de la Pailleterie. Antoine disapproved of their son, Thomas-Alexandre, joining the French army under the "Davy de la Pailleterie" name, so Thomas-Alexandre used his mother's surname instead. He became a valued general of Napoleon...
 
22.
Thomas Harris
Thomas Harris was born in 1940 in Jackson, Mississippi, USA. He was raised in the town of Rich where his father worked as a farmer. He earned his bachelor's degree in English from Baylor University in Texas in 1964. While attending school, he also worked for the local newspaper. After graduating, Harris traveled Europe for a time...
 
23.
Roger Corman
Producer, Death Race
Roger William Corman was born April 5, 1926, in Detroit, Michigan. Initially following in his father's footsteps, Corman studied engineering at Stanford University but while in school, he began to lose interest in the profession and developed a growing passion for film. Upon graduation, he worked a total of three days as an engineer at US Electrical Motors...
 
24.
James Cameron
Writer, Aliens
James Francis Cameron was born on August 16, 1954 in Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada. He moved to the United States in 1971. The son of an engineer, he majored in physics at California State University before switching to English, and eventually dropping out. He then drove a truck to support his screenwriting ambition...
 
25.
Roald Dahl
Roald Dahl was a famous short story writer who became one of the most successful and beloved children's writers of all time. He also wrote several screenplays. Born in Wales to Norwegian parents, he attended British schools, but never went to university, opting to go work for the Shell Oil Company instead...
 
26.
Wes Craven
Director, Scream
Wes Craven has become synonymous with genre bending and innovative horror, challenging audiences with his bold vision. Wesley Earl Craven was born in Cleveland, Ohio, to Caroline (Miller) and Paul Eugene Craven. He had a midwestern suburban upbringing. His first feature film was The Last House on the Left, which he wrote...
 
27.
William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare's birthdate is assumed from his baptism on April 25. His father John was the son of a farmer who became a successful tradesman; his mother Mary Arden was gentry. He studied Latin works at Stratford Grammar School, leaving at about age 15. About this time his father suffered an unknown financial setback...
 
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Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Hemingway was an American writer who won the Pulitzer Prize (1953) and the Nobel Prize in Literature (1954) for his novel The Old Man and the Sea, which was made into a 1958 film The Old Man and the Sea. He was born into the hands of his physician father. He was the second of six children of Dr. Clarence Hemingway and Grace Hemingway (the daughter of English immigrants)...
 
30.
Tod Browning
Director, Dracula
Belonging to a well-situated family, Charles Browning fell in love at the age of 16 with a dancer of a circus. Following her began his itinerary of being clown, jockey and director of a variety theater which ended when he met D.W. Griffith and became an actor. He made his debut in Intolerance: Love's Struggle Throughout the Ages...
 
31.
Mario Puzo
Mario Puzo was born October 15, 1920, in "Hell's Kitchen" on Manhattan's (NY) West Side and, following military service in World War II, attended New York's New School for Social Research and Columbia University. His best-known novel, "The Godfather," was preceded by two critically acclaimed novels...
 
32.
Joss Whedon
Writer, The Avengers
Joss Whedon is the middle of five brothers - his younger brothers are Jed Whedon and Zack Whedon. Both his father, Tom Whedon and his grandfather, John Whedon were successful television writers. Joss' mother, Lee Stearns, was a history teacher and she also wrote novels as Lee Whedon...
 
33.
Mick Garris
Writer, Hocus Pocus
Born in Santa Monica, California, on December 4, 1951, Mick Garris grew up with his mother in the San Fernando Valley neighborhood of Van Nuys from age 12, following his parents' divorce. Garris was making his own 8mm home movies around that time, and when he got older be became a freelance critic for a number of film and music celebrities...
 
34.
Curt Siodmak
Writer, The Wolfman
Born in Dresden, Germany, in 1902, Curt Siodmak worked as an engineer and a newspaper reporter before entering the literary and movie fields. It was as a reporter that he got his first break (of sorts) in films: in 1926 he and his reporter-wife hired on as extras on Fritz Lang's Metropolis in order to get a story on the director and his film...
 
35.
Peter Benchley
Writer, Jaws
Grandson of famed humorist and actor Robert Benchley and the son of highly respected children's books author Nathaniel Benchley, novelist Peter Benchley's book were decidedly more dramatic in their content and style than his father's, and usually centered on the world's oceans as a backdrop to his vigorous plots...
 
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