Now a few words about novelist Anne Rice, who turns 75 this week. Born in New Orleans on Oct. 4, 1941, she was given her father's name at birth: Howard O'Brien. She legally changed Howard to Anne in 1947. Rice has said she has written stories all her life, but her professional career took off in 1973, when she wrote Interview with the Vampire while grieving her 5-year-old daughter's death from leukemia. Her series of novels, The Vampire Chronicles, brought her international fame. Two of her 30 books were made into feature films: Interview with the Vampire (1994) and Queen of the Damned (2002). Rice returned to New Orleans in the 1980s (once owning six properties here, including St. Elizabeth's Orphanage) but left again after the 2002 death of her husband, Stan. She now lives in California as does her son Christopher, who also is a best-selling author.