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John F. Kennedy is sworn in as President.

Children's novelist and poet Angela Johnson is born on June 18 in Tuskegee, Alabama.

Harlan Ellison publishes the novels Spider Kiss and Memos From Purgatory. The short stories he publishes this year are "Children of the Streets" and "Gentleman Junkie."

Rod Serling receives his second Emmy from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) for Outstanding Writing Achievement in Drama for The Twilight Zone.

Russian Yuri Gagarin is the first man in space.

Old Ramon, a novel by Jack Schaefer, wins the Ohioana Book Award and is chosen as an American Library Association Notable Book.

Herbert Gold's short fiction "The Day They Got Boston" is published in the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction.

The Berlin Wall is built.

Langston Hughes publishes the book The Best of Simple.

Andre Norton's book Star Hunter is published.

Writer and novelist Mark Winegardner is born on November 24 in Bryan, Ohio.

John Jakes publishes the novel Strike the Black Flag under the pen name of Jay Scotland, and the novel Make Mine Mavis, under the name of William Ard.

Humorist and cartoonist James Thurber dies of pneumonia on November 2 following a stroke.


On February 20, Ohioan John Glenn piloted the Mercury-Atlas 6 "Friendship 7" spacecraft on the first manned orbital mission from the United States. It was launched at 9:47 a.m. from Cape Canaveral's complex 14 (renamed Cape Kennedy), Florida. He completed three orbits around the earth. He later addressed a joint session of Congress and returned to a hero's welcome in New York City for his ticker-tape parade.

A film version of Ambrose Bierce's story "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" is produced. The film wins an Academy Award and wins first prize at the Cannes Film Festival.

Seven Days in May, a suspense novel coauthored by Fletcher Knebel and Charles W. Bailey II, is published.

Langston Hughes publishes his classic poem "Ask Your Mama: 12 Moods for Jazz."

Thomas Berger's book Reinhart in Love is published.

Allan Eckert publishes a ten-unit correspondence course titled The Writer's Digest Course in Article Writing.

Rod Serling wins his third straight Hugo Award from the World Science Fiction Society. Also this year, Serling teaches dramatic writing at Antioch College.

Harlan Ellison's collection of short stories, Ellison Wonderland, is published

Quantities, Richard Howard's first book of poetry, is published.

Conrad Richter's autobiographical novel, A Simple Honorable Man, is published.

John Jakes publishes two novels under the name of Jay Scotland: Sir Scoundrel and Veils of Salome. Also this year, he uses the pen name William Ard for the novel And So to Bed.


Allan Eckert publishes his first nature novel The Great Auk.

Zane Grey's novel Boulder Dam is published.

The Elves, Gnomes and Little Men's Science Fiction Chowder and Marching Society presents Andre Norton with the Invisible Little Man Award for Life Achievements. Norton is the first woman to receive this honor. Also that year, her book The Witch World is published.

Helen Hooven Santmyer publishes Ohio Town: A Portrait of Xenia. The book includes essays that were published in previous years in the Antioch Review.

The Plainsmen, written by Jack Schaefer and illustrated by Lorence Bjorklund, is published.

Poet James Wright publishes his poetry collection The Branch Will Not Break.

President John F. Kennedy is assassinated in Dallas on November 22.


Thomas Berger's epic novel Little Big Man is published.

Langston Hughes's anthology New Negro Poets: USA is published.

Margaret Peterson Haddix is born April 9 in Washington Court House, Ohio.

The movie Seven Days in May is released and features an all-star cast. The film is based on a novel coauthored by Fletcher Knebel and is adapted for film by Rod Serling.

Conrad Richter's book The Post Reader of Fantasy and Science Fiction is published.

Dawn Powell receives the Marjorie Peabody Waite Award for lifetime achievement in literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

John Crowe Ransom receives the National Book Award for his work titled Selected Poems.

Helen Hooven Santmyer receives the Florence Roberts Hood Memorial Award from the Ohioana Library Association for her novel Ohio Town.

Harlan Ellison's novel Earthman, Go Home! is published. Also, two of his stories, "Demon With a Glass Hand" and "Soldier" are used on the television show The Outer Limits.

On August 7, the United States begins military presence in Vietnam.


Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is awarded an honorary degree of humane letters by Oberlin College.

Allan Eckert's narrative historical book, A Time of Terror: The Great Dayton Flood, is published. Also published by Eckert this year is his second nature novel, The Silent Sky: The Incredible Extinction of the Passenger Pigeon.

Novelist and satirist Dawn Powell dies in New York in November. The cause is colon cancer.

Harlan Ellison receives a Nebula Award for his short story "'Repent, Harlequin!' Said the Ticktockman." The Nebula Award is presented by the Science Fiction Writers of America (SFWA) to acknowledge excellence in science fiction writing. Also this year, Ellison receives the Writers Guild of America Award for his script "Demon with a Glass Hand" for the television series The Outer Limits.

Roger Zelazny wins two Nebula Awards. He Who Shapes gets Best Novella, and The Doors of His Face, the Lamps of His Mouth wins for Best Novellette.

Screenwriter Suzanne Clauser's first Bonanza script, "Woman of Fire," airs.

Jane Louise Curry's first book, a collection of Indian tales titled Down From the Lonely Mountain, is published.

John Jakes publishes the novel Brak the Barbarian, the first in the Brak the Barbarian series.

Andre Norton publishes three books: Three Against the Witch World, The X Factor, and Year of the Unicorn.


Natalie Babbitt and her husband Samuel publish their first book, The Forty-Ninth Magician. Natalie illustrated the book, which was written by Samuel.

Hart Crane's The Complete Poems and Selected Letters and Prose is published.

Daniel Keyes's novel Flowers For Algernon is published.

Roger Zelazny wins a Hugo Award for best novel for The Immortal. The Hugo Award is a science fiction achievement award given by the World Science Fiction Society.

Dav Pilkey is born on March 4 in Cleveland, Ohio.

Conrad Richter publishes two novels: The Awakening Land and A Country of Strangers.

Cynthia Rylant publishes Margaret, Frank and Andy: Three Writers' Stories, a book for young children about the lives of the authors of three books for young children. The authors are Margaret Wise Brown (Goodnight Moon), L. Frank Baum (The Wizard of Oz), and E. B. White aka Andy (Charlotte's Web).

Broadway producer and writer Russel Crouse dies on April 3. Crouse won the Pulitzer Prize for drama in 1946 for the play State of the Union.


The Science Fiction Writers of America could not decide which novel should receive this year's Nebula Award, so two authors were chosen. One was Daniel Keyes for his novel Flowers for Algernon.

Thomas Berger's novel Killing Time is published.

Allan Eckert publishes three novels: Wild Season, Bayou Backwaters, and The Frontiersmen, which is the first book of his six-volume Winning of America series.

Harlan Ellison receives a Writers Guild of America Award for his story "The City on the Edge of Forever," an episode on the television series Star Trek. Also this year, Ellison publishes a novel, Doomsman, and several short stories: "I Have No Mouth & I Must Scream," and "From the Land of Fear."

Nikki Giovanni organizes the first Cincinnati Black Arts Festival.

Erma Bombeck's collection of columns titled At Wit's End is published.

Herbert Gold publishes Fathers: A Novel in the Form of a Memoir, which has been cited as one of his most important works.

Richard Howard's second collection of poetry, The Damages, is published.

Langston Hughes dies as the result of complications of prostate cancer surgery. Released this year before his death is another Hughes anthology, The Best Short Stories by Negro Writers, 1899-1967. His book, The Panther and the Lash: Poems of Our Times, is published posthumously. In this book, Hughes addresses the issue of the politics of racism.

Two books are published this year by Jack Schaefer: Mavericks and The Short Novels of Jack Schaefer.

John Jakes publishes two nonfiction works: Great War Correspondents and Famous Firsts in Sports.

Playwrights Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee receive the Moss Hart Memorial Award for Plays of a Free World.

Andre Norton's book Wizard's Worlds is published.

Roger Zelazny publishes Lord of Light, which is often cited as his best novel, and a story collection titled A Rose for Ecclesiastes.

Virginia Hamilton's first novel, Zeely, is published, launching the career of one of literature's most honored writers and storytellers.


On April 8, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is assassinated. Unrest and civil disorders erupt in 124 cities across the country, including cities throughout Ohio.

On April 11, President Lyndon Baines Johnson signs the Civil Rights Act of 1968, which is aimed at curbing discrimination in housing.

Allan Eckert receives the Ohioana Library Association Book of the Year Award.

Two books by Arnold Adoff are published: I am the Darker Brother: An Anthology of Modern Poems by Negro Americans and Black on Black.

On June 5, Senator Robert Kennedy, brother of the late president, is assassinated.

Rod Serling and Michael Wilson write the screenplay for the film Planet of the Apes.

Langston Hughes's play, The Panther and The Lash: Poems of Our Times, opens.

Allan Eckert receives The Friends of American Writers, the highest award of the year, for The Frontiersmen and Wild Season. It was the first time in the organization's forty-year history that they had to decide between two novels by the same author, so they gave him two awards. Works by Eckert that are published this year include: Wilderness Empire, The Crossbreed, The Dreaming Tree, and Blue Jacket -- War Chief of the Shawnees.

Harlan Ellison receives a Nova Award for the most outstanding contribution to the field of science fiction. Also this year, he gets a Hugo Award for his short story "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream." The Hugo Award is a science fiction achievement award given by the World Science Fiction Society.

Black Feeling, Black Talk/Black Judgement, a collection of poems by Nikki Giovanni, is published.

John Jakes's novel Making It Big, aka Johnny Havoc and The Siren in Red, is published.

Roger Zelazny's Lord of Light receives the Hugo Award for best novel. The Hugo Award is a science fiction achievement award given by the World Science Fiction Society.

On October 30, Conrad Richter dies in Pottsville, Pennsylvania.

Daniel Keyes's acclaimed novel Flowers for Algernon is made into a television movie titled Charly and his novel The Touch is published.

Shall We Gather At the River by James Wright is published. The volume is called his "darkest work."

Andre Norton's book Sorceress of the Witch World is published.

Virginia Hamilton receives the Edgar Allan Poe Award for The House of Dies Drear.


The Search for Delicious by Natalie Babbitt is published.

Rod Serling's Night Gallery debuts on television. The series ran until 1972, and Serling was nominated for two Emmys. Also this year, Rod Serling writes the screenplay for The President's Plane Is Missing, a novel written by his brother Robert.

Jane Louise Curry's novel The Sleepers is published.

Paul Laurence Dunbar's novel The Fanatics is published.

Allan Eckert's novel In Search of a Whale is published.

Harlan Ellison's short story "The Beast That Shouted Love at the Heart of the World" is published and wins a Hugo Award. The Hugo Award is a science fiction achievement award given by the World Science Fiction Society. Also this year, Ellison's novella A Boy and His Dog receives a Nebula Award.

On June 20, Ohioan Neil Armstrong became the first human to walk on the moon. The historical Apollo 11 lunar mission was launched July 16. Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Edwin Aldrin landed on the moon's surface.

Zane Grey's short story "The Horses of Bostil's Ford" is published.

Herbert Gold's novel The Great American Jackpot is published.

Richard Howard's critical essay, Alone with America: Essays of the Art of Poetry in the United States since 1950, is published.

Two works by Langston Hughes are published this year: a play titled Good Morning Revolution: Uncollected Writings of Social Protest, and the book Black Misery.

John Jakes publishes a number of novels this year, including: Brak the Barbarian Versus the Mark of the Demons, The Hybrid, Tonight We Steal the Stars, The Last Magicians, and The Planet Wizard.

Virginia Hamilton's novel collection, The Time-Ago Tales of Jahdu, is published.


Thomas Berger's epic novel Little Big Man is made into a movie.

Arnold Adoff publishes three books: Black and Loud: Malcolm X, An Anthology of Modern Poems by Black Americans, and Brothers and Sisters: Modern Stories by Black Americans.

Toni Morrison publishes her first novel, The Bluest Eye.

Natalie Babbitt's book The Something is published.

On May 4, four students are killed by the National Guard at Kent State University after protesting against the Vietnam War. In 1975, a Federal jury in Cleveland, Ohio, would exonerate Governor James A. Rhodes, twenty-seven Ohio National guardsmen, and former President of Kent State of any responsibility in the shootings.

William Matthews publishes his first book of poems, Ruining the New Road.

Two novels by Jane Louise Curry are published: The Change Child and The Daybreakers.

Allan Eckert wins an Emmy Award for writing over 225 television shows for Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom series. Also this year, his novel The Twilight of Empire is published.

Harlan Ellison's story "The Whimper of Whipped Dogs" is used for the television series The Young Lawyers.

Nikki Giovanni publishes three books: Re: Creation, Poem of Angela Yvonne Davis, and Night Comes Softly.

Roger Zelazny publishes his first book in the first part of his Amber Chronicles. The book is titled Nine Princes in Amber.

Poet Richard Howard's third collection, Untitled Subjects, is published and receives a Pulitzer Prize.

Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee receive the Pegasus Award from the Ohioana Library Association for "creative works in the living theatre."

The books Ice Crown and Dread Companion, both by Andre Norton, are published.

John Jakes publishes five novels: Black in Time, Six-Gun Planet, The Mark of the Demons, Mask of Chaos, and Monte Cristo #99.

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