Dorothy Allison, 1949 - Writer Dorothy Allison was born in 1949 in Greenville, South Carolina to a fourteen-year-old unwed mother. She grew up with an abusive and violent father figure. Allison was the first in her family to graduate from high school. She received a National Merit Scholarship and earned a bachelor's degree from Florida Presbyterian College and a master's from New York's School of Social Research. In 1988, "Trash," a book of short stories was published. Allison followed with "The Women Who Hate Me: Poetry, 1980-1990," which gained her respect in the gay and lesbian community. "Trash" was awarded two Lambda Literary awards: Best Small Press and Best Lesbian Book. "Bastard Out of Carolina" gave her mainstream success and was a National Book Award finalist. The novel tells a tale of poverty, incest, abuse and survival and is centered around the Boatwright family of Greenville County, South Carolina. Allison has also published a collection of essays titled "Skin: Talking About Sex, Class and Literature," which won critical acclaim. "Two or Three Things I Know For Sure" (1995) is a short memoir in which she used text and family photographs. "Cavedweller" is an epic novel that chronicles the lives of four strong women in the difficult terrain of small town Georgia. In addition to writing her books, Allison is a contributor to publications such as The New York Times, Harpers and Allure.