Back to top

Just a Number: Ageless Authors

Judy blume

November 15, 2019

Recently, a coworker and I started talking about a very popular author who had just died. My coworker expressed shock at how old the author had been. Unlike actors, or other celebrities who keep a high profile, many authors seem to age without our knowledge. Unless they regularly make public appearances, we can be completely oblivious to the fact that they no longer look like their book jackets. As long as their writing remains fresh and current, it’s like they are ageless!

Do you know exactly how old your favorite author is? See if the age of any of the following authors surprises you:

  • James Patterson – One of the most prolific and commercially successful authors, like, ever. He seems to put a new novel out every week. Not bad for a man who is currently 72 years young!
  • Danielle Steel seems to have been around forever. Yet her novels remain just as popular as they were when she first burst onto the scene all those years ago. She shares the same birth year as the aforementioned Mr. Patterson and is a delightful 72 as well.
  • Stephen King – The master of horror. To this day, he is still thrilling readers and watching his books be made into hit movies. There must be something about the year 1947 because he is part of the 72-year-old club too!
  • Judy Blume – This one shocked me—more for what it says about my age than hers! Like a lot of people my age, I grew up with Judy Blume. Her books remain a timeless part of many people’s childhoods, so it came as quite a shock to find out that she is 81 years old!
  • R. L. Stine. – Here’s one for the generation that came after mine. Stine’s Goosebumps series remain popular to this day, and several of his stories are getting the movie treatment right now. His ability to still connect with young people is fantastic considering he is…76!
  • Clive Cussler – If you’re a thriller fan, then Clive is your man. He continues to bring the action and adventure to his devoted readers, releasing yet another new novel this year. I hope that I am just as spry at…88!
  • Stuart Woods – Edgar Award-winner Woods will have yet another novel on the shelves next year. Treason, his new Stone Barrington adventure, will be released as the author celebrates his 82nd birthday. 
  • Margaret Atwood – Having just released a sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale called The Testaments, Atwood has now also won the prestigious Man Booker Prize. Another thing to celebrate along with her birthday this month. Happy 80th, Margaret!
  • Dean Koontz – A perfect author to read in the fall, his books combine suspense with horror and fantasy mixed in. This year, the father of Odd Thomas celebrated birthday number 74.
  • Nora Roberts – And now for the baby of the group! A woman who writes under not one, but two names (some know her as J. D. Robb). Whatever the name, she is looking to celebrate number 70 next year.

The ages of all these great authors are a reminder of how it is never too late to start that novel you’ve always wanted to write. And, with this being the month of NaNaWriMo, take inspiration from these Septuagenarians and Octogenarians. Pick up that pen or grab that laptop and get writing!

Pamela M.
Antioch Branch


With the first of his 10 Flavia de Luce novels published at 69!

From PJ Yeomans (not verified)
Tue, 12/10/2019 - 04:10pm

Add new comment

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.

View All Blogs

Read Similar Blogs:
Books and Reading

Resources You May Also Like


Learn history in a dynamic multimedia experience.
More Info

Your Next Read

No matter the age range or specific needs, we’re here to help you find Your Next Read.
More Info

Blogs You May Also Like

Banned Books Week: Books Unite Us. Censorship Divides Us.
Read More

Banned Books Week: Books Unite Us. Censorship Divides Us.

The classic 1953 science fiction novel
It’s Written in the Stars . . .  READ!
Read More

It’s Written in the Stars . . . READ!

Mid-Continent Public Library will be honoring the 20th anniversary of Teen Read Week™ on October 7 – 13.
Building Block Awards: Vote on Your Favorite Picture Book!
Read More

Building Block Awards: Vote on Your Favorite Picture Book!

Did you know that each year, kids ages 0-6 in Missouri vote for their favorite picture book?
Explore the Stacks: Celebrity Memoirs and Autobiographies
Read More

Explore the Stacks: Celebrity Memoirs and Autobiographies

Have you ever wanted to peek inside the lives of the famous?

Was this page helpful? Yes No