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Bradbury, Ray (22 August 1920–05 June 2012), writer, poet, screenwriter, and cultural critic, was born in Waukegan, Illinois, the third (and second surviving) child of Leonard Spaulding Bradbury, a telephone lineman, and Esther Marie (Moberg) Bradbury. He became interested in science fiction in 1928, during convalescence while recuperating from whooping cough; other childhood interests that endured included the wonders of magic, drama, carnivals, and motion pictures. In 1934 his family moved to Los Angeles as Leonard Bradbury looked for work around the movie studios. Ray Bradbury’s first publication, the poem “In Memory of Will Rogers,” appeared in the 18 August 1936 ...

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Chayefsky, Paddy (29 January 1923–01 August 1981), writer for stage, screen, and television, was born Sidney Chayefsky in the Bronx, New York, the son of Harry Chayefsky, at the time an executive with a dairy, and Gussie Stuchevsky. After school at DeWitt Clinton High School and City College of New York, where he graduated in 1943, Chayefsky was drafted into the army and shipped to Germany. A notoriously sloppy and lazy soldier, Chayefsky earned his nickname, Paddy, when he tried to get out of kitchen duty to attend Catholic mass. After he was injured by a land mine he was shipped to a London hospital, where he and a composer friend wrote a musical, ...

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Fast, Howard (11 November 1914–12 March 2003), writer, was born Howard Melvin Fast in the Bronx, New York, to Barney Fast (né Fastov), a Ukrainian-Jewish immigrant, and Ida Miller Fast, a Lithuanian-born immigrant from London. Barney Fast worked as a laborer, initially at a tin factory and later in the garment district. There was little money, but Ida Fast held the family together with abundant love and prudent household management. Young Howard and his three surviving siblings were therefore devastated by the death of their mother in 1923. Without her to look after them, the family quickly sank into desperate poverty....

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Moore, Donald Wynkoop (1905?–07 April 1986), magazine editor and writer, best known for his work on comic strips and teleplays. His birthplace and his parents’ names and occupations are unknown. He graduated second in his class with a bachelor’s degree in English from Dartmouth College in 1925. For several years after graduation he worked as a journalist, first in his parents’ hometown of Miami, Florida, at the ...

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Tarloff, Frank (04 February 1916–25 June 1999), screen and television writer, was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Samuel Tarlovski and Rachel Yelin Tarlovski, Polish-Jewish immigrants who operated a small newspaper and penny candy store. (The family name was mistakenly recorded as Tarloff by an immigration officer at Ellis Island and was retained by the couple.) They made a modest living until Samuel Tarloff's death in 1928, when the business faltered. “We were poverty-stricken a year before everyone else,” Tarloff quipped, making reference to the Great Depression, which began after the stock market crash of 1929....

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Teichmann, Howard Miles (22 January 1916–07 July 1987), biographer and writer for stage, screen, and radio, was born in Chicago, Illinois. Teichmann graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1938. He then moved to New York City, where he began his professional career as a stage manager for ...