William Neal "Bill" Harrison was born on October 23, 1933, in Dallas, Texas.
Harrison earned a bachelor’s in journalism from Texas Christian University and studied creative writing at the University of Iowa.
Harrison started teaching at the University of Arkansas's department of English in 1964. He established the creative writing program in 1966. In addition to writing eight novels, Harrison wrote numerous short stories and screenplays. His most famous work is the screenplay for Rollerball, which is based on his short story, "Roller Ball Murder."
Harrison was awarded a Columbia School of Journalism prize in 1971, a Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship in 1974, and a National Endowment for the Arts grant in 1977.
Harrison passed away on October 22, 2013.