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E. Lynn Harris was not only a mentor to me, but a friend. He encouraged me to share my stories and helped me to understand the power of my words, and voice. As a fan of Lynn, in reading his works, I felt he embodied the Harlem Renaissance, the spirit of the social activism of James Baldwin, the cunning and wit of Langston Hughes, the romance of Countee Cullen, and the ingenious storytelling of Zora Neal Hurston. His works spoke volumes in regards to the complex, yet unique love we have in our community. His books not only changed the landscape of gay fiction, but gay life, and the black community. He empowered and inspired many men, and women, to live their lives proudly and boldly.
This July LambdaLiterary.org will be honoring the memory of author E. Lynn Harris, who passed away last year. As a part of our tribute, we asked his friends and peers to tell us about the important legacy of his work and his incredible impact on the community.