Language Arts C
February 4, 2000
Harper Lee was born in Monroeville, Alabama, on April 28, 1926. She is the youngest of three children of Amassa Coleman Lee(a lawyer) and Francis (Finch) Lee. Her education came from the Monroeville public schools. Following this, she went to Huntington College for a year, and then University of Alabama for five years to study law. There, from 1945 to 1950, she studied law, but did not get to complete her law degree, because she had left early in 1950. While at the University of Alabama, Lee didn't only study law, she also wrote for several student publications and for one year was editor of the Rammer-Jammer. After her studies at the university, she started working on her first novel. She considered her law studies to be very helpful in her writing careers. She completed her first draft for her only novel, To Kill A Mockingbird, in 1957.
After three years of rewriting and editing, it was published in 1960. Her novel was a very well written masterpiece. People started recognizing Harper Lee's talent, and she started getting awarded for it. "A year after it was published in 1960, "To Kill A Mockingbird" won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction"; she was the first woman since 1942 to get this prize. (http://www.news- observer.com/daily/1997/11/12/day00.html) "It sold more than two and a half million copies that first year and went through 14 printings!" (http://www.chebucto.ns.ca/Culture/HarperLee/publishing.html)
The book also won the Literacy Guild selection, Book-of-the-Month book and a Reader's Digest Condensed Book. In 1961, Harper Lee was awarded the Alabama Litrary Association Award, Best Sellers' Paperback of the Year 1962, and also the Brotherhood Award of National Conference of Christians and News in 1961. The book was on the bestseller lists for about eighty weeks,