The Guardian is reporting that Erich Segal, a screenwriter and novelist best-known for penning both the film and book versions of Love Story, has died at the age of 73 of a heart attack. Segal was a 32-year-old professor when he wrote the iconic tale of the star-crossed romance between a wealthy jock and an eccentric, dying working-class girl. In a story that has become pop-culture lore, Segal originally wrote Love Story as a screenplay but when it didn't sell he took the advice of an executive and turned it into a novel. The novel became a best-seller and then a massively successful motion picture that gave the world, "Love means never having to say you're sorry".

By the time Love Story conquered the world in 1970, Segal had already established himself as a screenwriter with the screenplay for Yellow Submarine. After the success of Love Story, Segal continued to teach as well as write novels and screenplays, including a poorly-received sequel to Love Story entitled Oliver's Story that was turned into a film in 1978.