Writer Willie Morris

Celebrities, Celebrity Q&A, People
on September 15, 2002

I saw the movie My Dog Skip and would like some information on Willie Morris, on whose book the movie was based.
—Louise G., Tennessee

Willie Morris, who grew up in Yazoo City, Miss., and poured his love of the South into his books, both fiction and non-fiction, died in 1999 at age 64. He was survived by his wife and son. "I am an American writer who happens to come from the South," he once said. "I've tried to put the South into the larger American perspective." As a student at the University of Texas in Austin, he edited the school newspaper. Morris continued his studies as a Rhodes scholar, studying at England's Oxford University. Upon returning to the United States, he became editor in chief of the Texas Observer. He was named editor of Harper's magazine in 1967, making him the youngest editor of the country's oldest magazine. Morris left after four years. Years later, he served as writer-in-residence at the University of Mississippi in Oxford. He wrote a follow-up to My Dog Skip called My Cat Spit McGee, which was published after his death. Another book, titled Taps, also was published after his death.