Eric Payne began writing at the age of 7 when he wrote, produced and co-directed a play based on Charlie Brown and the Peanuts comic strip for his 2nd-grade class. His work has appeared in print and online publications such as Timbooktu.com, Fyah.com, and Papyrus as well as various poetry anthologies.
He graduated from Cornell and Binghamton Universities for undergraduate and master’s degree programs in psychology respectively and is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.
Originally from Chicago, Illinois, Eric currently lives in New York City. He has held a range of jobs as a construction worker, an insurance salesman and claims adjustor, an auditor, a sales rep for an AM radio station and a managing editor at an Internet company.
It took several of Eric’s friends along the way to inform him that he was a writer. He hated English classes growing up and initially didn’t consider literature and poetry as something that black men did. During his sophomore year in college, he began keeping a journal. He kept on writing until he completed the journal and went on to fill three notebooks with poems and short stories exploring the job hunting and dating blues that he met upon entering the real world. He then enrolled in the Gotham Writers’ Workshop in New York City. It was when his teacher invited him back to take an advanced class that he finally accepted what his friends and family had been telling him all along.