(1914 - 1997)
Czech writer Bohumil Hrabal enjoyed spending time a bar in Prague called the Golden Tiger, where he preferred to be known as a beer drinker rather than a writer. He studied law at Prague’s Charles University until the Nazis invaded and closed the school. He subsequently found work as a law clerk, railroad worker, salesperson, paper salvager, and stagehand. For most of his writing career, Hrabal dealt with Czech and Soviet censors: he wrote the first version of what became one of his most famous novels, Closely Watched Trains, in 1949, but it was only published, with significant revisions, in 1965. He died after falling from a fifth-floor hospital-room window from which he was trying to feed the pigeons.