Dalton TrumboDalton Trumbo (December 9, 1905 – September 10, 1976) was among the most prolific and important literary figures of his time. One of the famous Hollywood Ten, he refused to testify about his alleged communist affiliations before the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1947. Blacklisted from the film industry and charged with contempt of Congress, he served an eleven-month prison sentence. Johnny Got His Gun, the most highly acclaimed work of Trumbo’s extraordinary career, won a National Book award (then known as an American Book Sellers Award) in 1939. The idea for the novel came to Trumbo after he learned of a British soldier who was seriously injured during World War I. In 2015 the acclaimed film “Trumbo,” starring Bryan Cranston, spurred renewed interest in the author’s life and works.
E. L. Doctorow’s works of fiction include Homer & Langley, The March, Billy Bathgate, Ragtime, The Book of Daniel, City of God, Welcome to Hard Times, Loon Lake, World’s Fair, The Waterworks, and All the Time in the World. Among his honors are the National Book Award, three National Book Critics Circle Awards, two PEN Faulkner Awards, the Edith Wharton Citation for Fiction and the presidentially-conferred National Humanities Medal. In 2009 he was short listed for the Man Booker International Prize honoring a writer’s lifetime achievement in fiction, and in 2012 he won the PEN Saul Bellow Award given to an author whose “scale of achievement over a sustained career places him in the highest rank of American Literature.” In 2013 the American Academy of Arts and Letters awarded him the Gold Medal for Fiction.