A Mystery Writers of America Grand Master, Lawrence Block is a four-time winner of the Edgar Allan Poe and Shamus Awards, as well as a recipient of prizes in France, Germany, and Japan. He received the Diamond Dagger from the British Crime Writer's Association - only the third American writer to do so. The author of more than fifty books and numerous short stories, he is a devout New Yorker who spends much of his time traveling.
Lawrence Block has been writing crime, mystery, and suspense fiction for more than half a century. He has published in excess of 100 books, and no end of short stories.
He is best known for two long-running New York-set series, about the recovering alcoholic P.I. Matthew Scudder and gentleman burglar Bernie Rhodenbarr, respectively.
Born in Buffalo, N.Y., LB attended Antioch College, but left before completing his studies; school authorities advised him that they felt he'd be happier elsewhere, and he thought this was remarkably perceptive of them. His earliest work, published pseudonymously in the late 1950s, was mostly in the field of midcentury erotica, an apprenticeship he shared with Donald E. Westlake and Robert Silverberg.
The first time Lawrence Block's name appeared in print was when his short story You Can't Lose was published in the February 1958 issue of Manhunt. The first book published under his own name was Mona (1961); it was reissued several times over the years, once as Sweet Slow Death.
His monthly instructional column ran in Writer's Digest for 14 years, and led to a string of books for writers, including the classics Telling Lies for Fun & Profit and The Liar's Bible. He has also written episodic television (Tilt!) and the Wong Kar-wai film, My Blueberry Nights.
Several of LB's books have been filmed. The latest, A Walk Among the Tombstones, stars Liam Neeson as Matthew Scudder.
Block and his wife Lynne are enthusiastic New Yorkers and relentless world travelers; the two are members of the Travelers Century Club, and have visited around 160 countries.
This biography was last updated on 10/20/2014.
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