January 28


Colette (Sidonie-Gabrielle) (born January 28, 1873) – French novelist – Gigi (1945)

Read a little about Colette in this History Is Made at Night blog post


Read the Authors Calendar biography of Colette


José Martí

José Martí (born January 28, 1853) – Cuban poet, political activist, essayist – A Cuba

Read about José Marti here

Excerpt from Marti's poem Versos Sencillos (1891)

Yo soy un hombre sincero / I am a sincere man
De donde crece la palma, / from where the palms grow
Y antes de morirme quiero / and before I die I want
Echar mis versos del alma. / to call verses from my soul.

Yo vengo de todas partes, / I come from all parts,
Y hacia todas partes voy: / And towards all parts I go:
Arte soy entre las artes, / Art I am with arts,
En los montes, monte soy. / In mountains, I am so.

Yo sé los nombres extraños / I know the foreign names
De las yerbas y las flores, / of herbs and of flowers,
Y de mortales engaños, / Of mortal false claims,
Y de sublimes dolores. / And of sublime sorrows.

Yo he visto en la noche oscura / I have seen in darkest night
Llover sobre mi cabeza / Like rain upon my head
Los rayos de lumbre pura / The rays of pure light
De la divina belleza. / Of beauty's divine stead.

See the Cuban Compay Segundo and his group with Omara Portuondo perform Guantanamera (Europe 1998?) on this Youtube video:

Arnaldur Indriðason

Arnaldur Indriðason (born January 28, 1961) – Icelandic crime fiction novelist

Read a profile of Indridason here

Indridason's incorporation of aspects of the Icelandic literary tradition of saga, such as the sometimes bloodthirsty repercussions of actions down the generations, further root the stories deep in this most idiosyncratic culture and landscape. This attention to local verisimilitude has, paradoxically, seen Indridason become the latest in a line of Scandinavian thriller writers to spectacularly break out of their home markets in recent years. "You would not immediately have thought of Reykjavik as one of Europe's prominent murder centres," wrote Marcel Berlins, but Indridason's Icelandic capital "is as dark, scary and lethal as Ian Rankin's Edinburgh".

Read the PBS "Masterpiece Mystery" description of Indridason and his novels

Q: You’ve said that Alfred Hitchcock is your favorite director—why, and do you have a favorite film?

Indridason: Possibly it is the blend of humor with the murder and mayhem that interests me the most. This is most evident in the first pages of [my book] Silence of the Grave where a toddler is gnawing on a bone of someone who was murdered 60 years before. One of my favorites is Strangers on a Train. It’s absolutely beautiful.

Frank Darabont

Frank Darabont (Born January 28, 1959) U.S. Screenwriter-Director, The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

Read about Frank Darabont here

Frank Darabont grew up mostly in LA from the age of twelve, and before that he bounced back and forth along the coast from San Francisco and back to LA. "I was living in Chicago until the age of five on the immigrant side of town. I was born in France in a Hungarian Refugee Camp. My folks split Hungary when the Russian tanks rolled in 1956 and I was born three years later." It may be easy to leap at the idea of growing up in the shadow of Hollywood as a direct inspiration for a career in films, but Darabont isn’t so sure where the impetus to seek out his fate came from: "I don’t know particularly. I think are things where you’re born with an ingrained love of something and I think I was born with a love for what I’m doing now—basically telling stories mostly as it applies to film."

Frank Darabont talks about his childhood and what influences his writing