St. Louis Authors

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There is a long history of poets, novelists, and essayists who have called St. Louis, 'home'. The dates in parenthesis signify lifespan, not necessarily dates of actual residence in the city.

  • Maya Angelou (1928-Present): Poet - She won the National Book Award for I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1970).
  • William S. Burroughs (1914-1997): Novelist and Essayist - best known for the novel, Naked Lunch (1959).
  • Patti Carr: Screenwriter - Has written television scripts for episodes of Boy Meets World, Kim Possible, Reba, and Til Death.
  • C. J. Cherryh (1942-Present): Novelist - Author of several Science Fiction and Fantasy novels, she won the Hugo Award in 1981 and 1988. An asteroid (77185 Cherryh) was named for her in 2001.
  • Kate Chopin (1851-1904): Novelist - Best known for her novel, The Awakening (1899).
  • T.S. Eliot (1888-1965): Poet - Best known for his poems The Wasteland and The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock, Eliot won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1948.
  • Stanley Elkin (1930-1995): Novelist and Essayist - A professor at Washington University from 1960-1995, his novel The MacGuffin was a finalist for the National Book Award in 1991.
  • Eugene Field (1850-1895): Poet - Best known for children's poems such as Wynken, Blynken and Nod and The Gingham Dog and the Calico Cat.
  • Jonathan Franzen (1959-present): Novelist and Essayist - He won the National Book Award in 2001 for The Corrections.
  • William H. Gass (1924-present): Novelist, Essayist - Winner of the Pushcart Prize four times, Gass founded the International Writers Center at Washington Univeristy in 1990.
  • James Gunn (1970-present): Screenwriter - Wrote the screenplays for Scooby-Doo (2002), Scooby-Doo 2 (2004) and Dawn of the Dead (2004).
  • Laurell K. Hamilton (1963-present): Novelist - Horror and Fantasy author, she is best known for her Anita Blake series of vampire novels, set in St. Louis.
  • A.E. Hotchner (1920-present): Novelist and Playwright, his memoir, King of the Hill was made into a movie in 1993.
  • William Inge (1913-1973): Novelist and Playwright - Won the Pulitzer Prize in 1953 for the play, Picnic.
  • Robert McHenry (1945-present): Encylopedist - Editor-in-Chief of the Encyclopedia Britannica from 1992-1997, and author of How to Know (2004).
  • Marianne Moore (1887-1972): Poet - Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award in 1951 for her poetry, she wrote the liner notes for Muhammad Ali's spoken-word album, I am the Greatest!.
  • Howard Nemerov (1920-1991): Poet - A National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize winner, Nemerov was the US Poet Laureate from 1963-1964 and 1988-1990.
  • Harold Ramis (1944-present): Screenwriter - Screenplays Ramis has worked on include National Lampoon's Animal House, Caddyshack, Stripes, Ghostbusters, and Groundhog Day.
  • Irma Rombauer (1877-1962): Cookbook author - Author of The Joy of Cooking, one of the world's most published cookbooks.
  • Lara Runnels: Screenwriter - Has written television scripts for episodes of Boy Meets World, Kim Possible, Reba, and Til Death.
  • Sara Teasdale (1884-1933): Poet - Winner of the 1918 Columbia University Poetry Society Prize (Renamed the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1922).
  • Mark Twain aka Samuel Langhorne Clemens (1835-1910): Novelist - The author of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn worked briefly as a printer in St. Louis.
  • Mona Van Duyn (1921-2004): Poet - National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize winner, Van Duyn was the US Poet Laureate from 1992-1993.
  • Tennessee Williams (1911-1983): Playwright - Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for A Streetcar Named Desire and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.