Sometimes authors don't shuffle off this mortal coil quietly or -- for want of a better word -- normally. Sometimes they meet a sticky and untimely end, and sometimes myths build up around an author's demise and we come to accept legend as fact.
Begging for blurbs is one of the more misery-producing aspects of being published. It can leave us desperate and depressed. It's humiliating to have to grovel for blurbs, rather than have your publisher secure them for you.
On a family vacation from Wisconsin to Dauphin Island, Alabama, we stopped at Lincoln's home in Springfield, IL to take a tour. In the front parlor there was a photograph of Honest Abe hanging on the wall.
An aspect of Twain's legacy that many aren't aware of is that he was America's first notable animal rights activist. Animals were always central to Twain's writing, from his first stories through his final years.