E. Lynn Harris

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General Information

Name: E. Lynn Harris

Pen Name: None

Born: 1955 in Flint, Michigan

Died: 2009 in Los Angeles, California

Illinois Connection

Harris lived in Chicago. His book, And This Too Shall Pass, was set in Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

E. Lynn Harris was an American author who rose from self-publishing to best-selling status. He was best known as a pioneer of gay black fiction. He authored ten consecutive books to make The New York Times Best Seller list.

After graduating with honors from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville in 1977, Harris went to work as a sales executive for IBM. Five years later, he quit his job as a computer salesman and used $25,000 of his own money to print Invisible Life. It was published as a Doubleday paperback in 1994 and quickly soared to number one on the Blackboard Bestseller List of African American titles.

Harris also edited two books, Freedom in the Village: Twenty-five years of Black, Gay Men's Writing in 2004 and Gumbo: A Celebration of African American Writers with Marita Golden in 2002.

He founded the E. Lynn Harris Better Days Foundation, a nonprofit company that provides support to aspiring writers and artists.

Published Works

  • Invisible Life, Consortium Books, 1991
  • Just As I Am, A Novel, Doubleday, 1994
  • And This Too Shall Pass, Doubleday, 1996
  • If This World Were Mine, Doubleday, 1997
  • Abide With Me, Doubleday, 1999
  • Not A Day Goes By, A Novel, Doubleday, 2000
  • Any Way the Wind Blows, Doubleday, 2001
  • A Love of My Own, Doubleday, 2002
  • What Becomes of the Brokenhearted, A Memoir, Doubleday, 2003
  • I Say a Little Prayer, Doubleday, 2006
  • Just Too Good To Be True, Doubleday, 2008
  • Basketball Jones, Doubleday, 2009
  • Mama Dearest, Doubleday, 2009 - Released Posthumously
  • In My Father's House, Doubleday, 2010 - Released Posthumously
  • No One in the World: A Novel, Simon and Schuster, 2011 - Released Posthumously

Titles at Your Library

Invisible Life

ISBN: 0786250550
Release Date: 2003-02-02

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Just As I Am

ISBN: 0786250542
Release Date: 2003-04

Find on World Cat

And This Too Shall Pass

ISBN: 0786263636
Release Date: 2004-03-22

Find on World Cat

If This World Were Mine

ISBN: 0786258950
Release Date: 2003-11-02

Find on World Cat

Not a Day Goes By: A Novel

Release Date: 2007-12-18

Any Way the Wind Blows

ISBN: 078625792X
Release Date: 2003-10-02

Find on World Cat

Literary Awards

Body of Work:

  • Novel of the Year prize
  • Blackboard African-American Bestsellers, Inc.
  • NAACP Image Award nominee, 1997
  • SBC Magazine Brother of the Year in literature
  • Harlem Y. Mentor Award
  • BMAD Angel Award

Just As I Am

  • Blackboard's Novel of the Year Award

If This World Were Mine

  • James Baldwin Award for Literary Excellence

Any Way the Wind Blows

  • Blackboard's Novel of the Year Award

A Love Of My Own

  • Blackboard's Novel of the Year Award

What Becomes of the Broken Hearted

  • Lambda Builder Award, 2004

Freedom in This Village

  • Lambda Anthologies Award, 2005

External Links

E. Lynn Harris on WorldCat


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