Everyone has their quirks, even famous authors. But here are 13 fun facts about them that you probably didn’t know, and might make you see them differently.
1. Dan Brown, the famed author of Da Vinci Code, was previously a pop singer and had once written a song about phone sex.
2. The author of Famous Five and Secret Seven Series, Enid Blyton, hated kids and got hopping mad whenever children made a racket in her neighborhood. Even her younger daughter Imogen called her, “arrogant, insecure, pretentious and without a trace of maternal instinct.”
3. The accomplished horror writer Stephen King has triskaidekaphobia, irrational fear of number 13. He’s so terrified of it that he wouldn’t pause reading or writing if he’s on page 13 or it’s multiples till he reaches a safe number.
5. Lewis Carroll allegedly proposed to the real 11-year-old Alice and was also thought to be a “heavily repressed pedophile”.
6. Charles Dickens was so fascinated with dead bodies that he’d spend most of his time at the Paris Morgue.
7. On May 16, 1836, Edgar Allan Poe married his first cousin Virginia Eliza Clemm. He was 26 at that time, and she was 13.
8. William S. Burroughs, the author of Naked Lunch, shot his wife in the head during a drunken attempt at playing William Tell. The controversial beat writer had also once chopped the top joint of his finger to gift his ex-boyfriend but instead presented it to his psychiatrist, who freaked out and committed him to a private clinic.
9. Two young school girls tricked Sherlock Holmes’s author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle into believing in the existence of fairies.
10. Jonathan Swift, the creator of Gulliver’s Travels, was first to coin the name Vanessa.
11. Alexandre Dumas‘s pants fell off during his first duel at age 23.
12. J.R.R Tolkien was known to be a wacky prankster who once dressed as an ax-wielding Anglo-Saxon warrior and chased his neighbor.
13. Maya Angelou once worked as a sex worker and a ‘madam’, and chronicled her experiences in her memoir Gather Together in My Name.