Richard Yates was born in Yonkers, New York in 1926. Yates was a well-known American novelist and short-story writer. Yates first became interested in writing and journalism while attending Avon Old Farms School in Avon, Connecticut. After Yates' return from France and Germany after serving in the army, he worked as a journalist, publicity writer, and freelance ghost writer. It was not until 1961 that his career as a novelist was officially launched with the publication of his first novel, Revolutionary Road. Revolutionary Road was a finalist for the National Book Award and was subsequently made into a movie in 2008. Yates also taught writing at several universities and institutions including Columbia University, Boston University, Wichita State University, and the University of Southern California Master of Professional Writing Program. Yates was divorced twice and has three daughters: Sharon, Monica, and Gina. He died in 1992 in Birmingham, Alabama of emphysema and complications from a minor surgery.
Novelist and screenwriter Richard Russo was born in Johnstown, New York on July 15, 1949. He received a Bachelor's degree, a Master of Fine Arts degree, and a Doctor of Philosophy degree from the University of Arizona. He taught at numerous colleges including Southern Illinois University Carbondale and Colby College. He has written numerous books including Mokawk, The Risk Pool, Straight Man, Bridge of Sighs, and That Old Cape Magic, as well as a short story collection, The Whore's Child. His novel Empire Falls won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and Nobody's Fool was made into a movie starring Paul Newman, Bruce Willis and Melanie Griffith. He also co-wrote the 1998 film Twilight with director Robert Benton and the teleplay for the HBO adaptation of Empire Falls.