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I was actually surprised to discover that there are a bunch of planets out there that were named after famous authors. Everyone from Orwell and Dickens to Clarke, Asimov, Tolkien, Mark Twain, Jane Austen, Lewis Carrol and even Jack London have their own planets. Granted, most of these planets are pretty minor in the grand scheme of things and there are so many of them out there, but still, imagine how awesome it would be to have an entire planet named after you. However, spare a thought for the authors who did not get an entire planet named after them, but only an impact crater somewhere on Mercury. Authors who have had this dubious honor include Rudyard Kipling, William Shakespeare, Leo Tolstoy, Anton Chekhov and Fyodor Dostoyevsky. Don't feel too bad for Kipling, though, as he has already got enough things on our own planet named after him. These include a lake, as well as two towns in the USA, named Rudyard and Kipling respectively. Apparently Kipling himself wrote a thank you note to the railroad general manager who named these towns after his famous author.
I wasn't allowed to play Dungeons & Dragons because everyone thought it was evil and satanic, but nobody monitored my reading too closely, so I was free to read gamebooks. These were the closest I could get to D&D and my favorite was the Lone Wolf series by Joe Dever. The covers for the books were a bit more tame compared to the Fighting Fantasy books, which often featured gory or evil looking covers if I remember correctly. The fun I had reading about Lone Wolf, the last of the Kai Lords, made me a lifelong fan of fantasy novels as well as an avoid role playing gamer. Dever released about 30 books in the series and I believe all of them are now available for free, so anyone can experience them in HTML form without having to spend a dime. A mobile game was also released about the character, but to me nothing will ever beat the original books.
If you mean authors who focus their work on American pop culture, then Charles John Klosterman or "Chuck" as he is commonly known is one that springs to mind. I know that he mostly writes for places like Esquire and so on, but he's also written a number of books, including two novels. I would recommend reading Downtown Owl: A Novel and The Visible Man, but also check out his non-fiction stuff, like I Wear the Black Hat: Grappling with Villains (Real and Imagined), and But What If We're Wrong? Thinking About the Present As if It Were the Past. He's got a really sharp mind and the ability to tap into pop culture to make his points.
Although he isn't "out there" anymore due to the fact that he passed away in 2011 from diabetes, I still consider Lain Blair to be one of the all time greats. He wrote under the pen name of Emma Blair for many years and produced some really fine romantic novels. I still remember the shock of finding out that Emma is actually Lain back in 1998 because of his novel, Flower of Scotland. It actually received a nomination for "Romantic Novel of the Year" which prompted him to reveal his true identity.

If you have read romance novels like The Red Shawl, Story Bay, The Restless Spirit, Portrait of Charlotte, The Long Way Home, The Restless Heart, Secrets of the Sea, Reach for Tomorrow, Dangerous Shores, Stay With Me, Secrets of a Whitby Girl and many, many others, then you will know that they were written by Jessica Blair. What you may or may not know is that Jessica Blair was actually William John Duncan Spence, or "Bill" to his friends. Spence didn't just have an impressive resume of historical romances under his belt, but he also wrote war novels and Westerns, all under different pseudonyms. His romances were by far the most successful, though. Not bad for a World War II veteran!
It's always funny to me how people say Poe or Lovecraft are not scary, but they read the books in broad daylight with their televisions blaring in the background as they browse their social media feeds between pages. I can only imagine how terrifying these books were back in the days when they were written if people read them at night. Give these books a spin when you are alone at home late at night with only a candle to light your surroundings and they will take on a whole new meaning. I know that the archaic words can make it a little tough if you are not used to them, but after a few chapters it all falls into place and you can experience the stories in all their terrifying glory.

As for Stephen King, I've got nothing against him, but I feel like his output has been very inconsistent over the years and half of his novels that people describe as terrifying barely feels like horror in my opinion. Don't get me wrong, he's got a couple of really good books and even a few horror classics, but nothing that he has written has ever kept me up at night.
Dani Haviland - A Beautiful Love Story Set in the Alaskan Wilderness
FEATURED AUTHOR - Determined to get her story published, Dani Haviland jumped into the newly discovered ocean of self-publishing in 2011 and has been surfing it ever since, having reached USA Today Bestselling author twice in the last three years. Although she grew up in Arizona, Dani now splits her time between Alaska and Oregon, writing, publishing, and promoting while claiming to be 'retired.' As our Author of the Day, Haviland tells us all about her book, One Arctic Summer Please give us a short… Read more