1917: Robert Bloch, American fiction writer primarily of crime, horror, fantasy and science fiction, was born today in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Best known as the writer of Psycho, the basis for the film of the same name by Alfred Hitchcock he had a fondness for puns as evidenced in the titles of his story collections such as Tales in a Jugular Vein, Such Stuff as Screams Are Made Of and Out of the Mouths of Graves.
Bloch wrote hundreds of short stories and over 30 novels. H. P. Lovecraft was Bloch’s mentor and one of the first to seriously encourage his talent. However, while Bloch started his career by emulating Lovecraft and his brand of “cosmic horror”, he later specialized in crime and horror stories dealing with a more psychological approach.
He won the Hugo Award (for his story “That Hell-Bound Train“), the Bram Stoker Award, and the World Fantasy Award.
His favorites among his own novels were The Kidnapper, The Star Stalker, Psycho, Night-World, and Strange Eons. His work has been extensively adapted for the movies and television, comics and audio books.
Bloch died of cancer at the age of 77 in 1994.