Goodbye Mr. Harris! Thank you so much for all the wonderful writing that you leave behind. Characters like Basil, Yancey, Raymond, Nicole and Trent will live on forever!
I first discovered the novel, “Invisible Life” your writing in the summer of 1995, after my 2nd year in college. A good friend has ended a relationship with a “questionable” dude and I called her after I’d read 2 chapters of the book. I remember exactly what I said to her, “Guuuuuurl, you’ve been dating Raymond!!”. After explaining the context to her, we laughed ourselves into tears!
As an avid reader, I continued to follow Mr. Harris’s novels. During the summer of 2002, on a publicity tour for “Any Way the Wind Blows”, I had the pleasure of hearing him read and meeting him at Olssons Books and Records in Washington, D.C. I wish I could find the picture that we took. I still have the book that he signed for me. We were able to chat for a hot second and when he heard that I was an aspiring author, he told me, “Drop the word aspiring author. You ARE an author!” And then he wrote this inside my novel, “Mrs. TDJ, You are a writer. Use your words and claim your destiny!” Sadly enough, I read the words when he wrote them, thanked him and kept it moving. It would be 4 years before I picked up my abandoned fiction novel. I didn’t read his inscription again until Saturday morning as I was reflecting on his death.
Although he passed at the young age of 54, his writing and life story impacted many. I’m happy to have enjoyed his writing and happier yet to have had the brief opportunity to meet him. As instructed, I will continue to use my words and claim my destiny. I AM A WRITER! Thank you Mr. Harri!