Lewis Nordan was born in Forest, Mississippi on August 23, 1939. He received a bachelor's degree from Millsaps College, a master's degree from Mississippi State University, and a Ph.D. from Auburn University. He taught at the University of Arkansas and elsewhere before joining the faculty at the University of Pittsburgh. He retired from there in 2005. His first book, Welcome to the Arrow-Catcher Fair, was published in 1983. His other works include Wolf Whistle, Lightning Song, Sugar among the Freaks, and Boy with Loaded Gun. He died due to complications of pneumonia on April 13, 2012 at the age of 72.