Howard Phillips Lovecraft – born today, August 20, 1890
He wrote many essays and poems early in his career, but gradually focused on the writing of horror stories. After the advent in 1923 of the pulp magazine Weird Tales, he contributed most of his fiction therein.
His relatively small corpus of fiction; three short novels and about sixty short stories, has nevertheless exercised a wide influence on subsequent work in the field. Though virtually unknown before his death, he is now regarded as one of the most significant 20th-century authors in his genre.
“The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear. And the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown.”
Forbidden, dark, esoterically veiled knowledge is a central theme in many of Lovecraft’s works. Many of his characters are driven by curiosity or scientific endeavor, and in many of his stories the knowledge they uncover proves Promethean in nature, either filling the seeker with regret for what they have learned, destroying them psychically, or completely destroying the person who holds the knowledge.
The Complete Fiction of H.P. Lovecraft
collects the author’s novel, four novellas, and fifty-three short stories. Written between the years 1917 and 1935, this collection features Lovecraft’s trademark fantastical creatures and
supernatural thrills, as well as many horrific and cautionary science-fiction themes,
that have influenced some of today’s writers and filmmakers, including Stephen King, Alan Moore, F. Paul Wilson, Guillermo del Toro, and Neil Gaiman.
“I think it is beyond doubt that H. P. Lovecraft has yet to be surpassed as the twentieth century’s greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale.” -Stephen King The Call of Ctulhu
“I couldn’t live a week without a private library – indeed, I’d part with
all my furniture and squat and sleep on the floor before I’d let go of the 1500
or so books I possess.” ~H.P. Lovecraft
A man after my own heart!
Who can relate?
“The reading of all good books is like a conversation with the finest minds of past centuries.”
René Descartes (1596 – 1650)
A French philosopher, mathematician, scientist and writer of the Age of Reason. He has been called the “Father of Modern Philosophy”, and much of subsequent Western philosophy can be seen as a response to his writings. He is responsible for one of the best-known quotations in philosophy:
“Cogito, ergo sum”
(“I think, therefore I am”).
Meditations on First Philosophy by Rene Descartes is widely considered to be one of the top philosophical books of all time. For many, Meditations on First Philosophy is required reading for various courses and curriculums. And for others who simply enjoy reading timeless pieces of classic philosophical literature, this gem by Rene Descartes is highly recommended.
“If you would be a real seeker after truth, it is necessary that at least once in your life you doubt, as far as possible, all things.”
“It is not enough to have a good mind; the main thing is to use it well.”
“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”
How appropriate that this year UK World Book Day falls on the Birthday of the legendary Dr. Seuss!
Theodor Seuss Geisel was born today March 2 in 1904 in Springfield, MA. The pen nameDr. Seuss was developed during his years at Dartmouth College and the University of Oxford. His first jobs were mainly that of an illustrator, working for such companies as Time magazine, Vanity Fair, and Life. Our beloved Dr. Seuss later became a famous American writer and illustrator; who we know as the author of famous children’s books such as The Cat in The Hat, Oh The Places You Will Go, and How The Grinch Stole Christmas.
Here are a few of my favorites:
“Try them, try them, and you may! Try them and you may, I say.”
One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish
“From there to here, from here to there, funny things are everywhere!”
Horton Hears a Who!
“A persons a person no matter how small.”
The list goes on, and on. I have honestly never read a book by Dr. Seuss
that I did not like, let alone love.
His brilliance and charm have always captured my heart, as well as many others (of all ages and backgrounds.) I believe his clever and inspiring words will continue to have a profound effect on the literary minds of children, the world of education, and serve as an inspiration to those needing to get back to the basics.
Fun Fact: During World War II, he worked in an animation department of the United States Army where he produced several short films, including Design for Death, which later won the 1947 Academy Award for Documentary Feature
Please share about your Dr. Seuss experiences, books you love,
quotes that inspire you, etc.
“Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.”
“The love of learning, the sequestered nooks, And all the sweet serenity of books. “
Born today in 1807:
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
(February 27 – March 24, 1882)
An American poet and educator whose works include “Paul Revere’s Ride”, The Song of Hiawatha, and Evangeline. He was also the first American to translate Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy, and was one of the five Fireside Poets.
“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times
we call a man cold when he is only sad.”
As the most widely known and best-loved American poet of his lifetime, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow achieved a level of national and international prominence previously unequaled in the literary history of the United States.
I adore Longfellow. I fell in love with his poignant yet beautiful poetry early on, and he has remained a favorite of mine. He has a way of mournfully telling you how wonderful life and love are, and someone it makes the meaning stick with a realness that is more lasting. A Psalm of Life was the first poem I ever committed to memory, every line enchanted me.
Afternoon in February The day is ending, The night is descending; The marsh is frozen, The river dead. Through clouds like ashes The red sun flashes On village windows That glimmer red. The snow recommences; The buried fences Mark no longer The road o'er the plain; While through the meadows, Like fearful shadows, Slowly passes A funeral train. The bell is pealing, And every feeling Within me responds To the dismal knell; Shadows are trailing, My heart is bewailing And tolling within Like a funeral bell.
I end with a quote from my all time favorite:
“Let us, then, be up and doing, with a heart for any fate; still achieving,
still pursuing, learn to labor and to wait.”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow