Howard Phillips Lovecraft was an American fantasy and horror writer best known for his 'Cthulhu Mythos' short fiction which appeared in the pulp magazine Weird Tales in the 1920s and 1930s. He is widely considered the second most influential American horror fiction writer after Edgar Allan Poe.
Lovecraft admired many of the authors that he is often compared to, like Lord Dunsany, Arthur Machen, and Algernon Blackwood. He referred to Poe as his "God of Fiction." However, the most important influences upon his fiction were his dreams and his belief in Cosmicism, both of which are prevalent throughout his corpus of work.
H.P. Lovecraft is often criticized for his attitudes towards non-Anglo Saxons, but later in his life, largely a direct result of marrying a Jewish woman, his opinions softened. He expressed sympathy for non-whites who were culturally assimilated, and was vocal about victims of colonization preserving their native cultures.
Lovecraft died of cancer in 1937, but his life and work have inspired artists, writers, and other creators ever since, even spawning "Lovecraftian Studies" in some universities. His headstone reads, "I am Providence," reflecting a relationship with his hometown that echoes Poe's relationship with Baltimore.