Leda & the Swan    

Table of Contents    


Illuminating Manuscripts

About the Author

Novel Thoughts

Leda's Online Library



The Harpsichord

History of Harmony

Johann Sebastian Bach

Man of Genius


Alessandro Scarlatti



A Lecterphile in Florence

Do You Know Florence?


Fine Art

Museo Virtuale

Faces of Leda

Every Vermeer in the World



Leda & The Swan - An Online Literary Journal   

About the Author

A Profile of Thomas Harris

Author Thomas HarrisThomas Harris was born in Tennessee but grew up in the small town of Rich, Mississippi. His mother, Polly, moved there to be near relatives in 1940 when Thomas Sr. went off to war. Thomas Jr. spent his early years in Rich with his parents, attending the local school where his mom taught biology.

In high school, Thomas went to live with his aunt in Cleveland, Mississippi and later attended Baylor University in Waco, Texas. He received his degree in English and in addition to his studies wrote stories for magazines like Argosy and True. His devotion to detail was evident even in these early works. Harris worked for the Waco Tribune Herald on the crime desk in the early 60's.

After leaving Waco, Harris got a job with the Associated Press in NY, where he continued to cover crime and also worked as an assistant editor.  He left behind a daughter and an ex-wife when he moved North.

Harris is famously reclusive, refusing to give interviews or attend book signings. Biographical information on his books reveals only that he is a Mississippi native who began his career as a journalist covering crime in the US and Mexico. He is in his early 60's and resides in Miami Beach with his girlfriend, Pace Barnes. Friends describe him as being soft-spoken, thoughtful, and well-mannered.

Harris approaches his writing in a notoriously unhurried manner he has published only 4 books since 1975 and has a penchant for meticulous research. He has spent countless hours with criminal profilers and forensic experts and attends law enforcement conventions. Harris also spent time at the trial of Pietro Pacciani in Florence in 1994, basing his Il Mostro in Hannibal on this real-life killer.

His first novel was published in 1975. Black Sunday, a story about terrorists at the Super Bowl, was originally conceived as a collaborative effort and outlined with colleagues, but it was Harris alone who ended up writing the book after quitting his job to pursue a career writing fiction.

Red Dragon, the book that introduced Hannibal Lecter, followed in 1981 and then Silence of the Lambs in 1988. His fourth novel, Hannibal, was published almost 10 years later in 1999.

Hannibal is the first in a two-book contract that Harris signed after the phenomenal success of Silence. 

Copyright 2001 by Hannah


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