Donald Douglas Harington (December 22, 1935 – November 7, 2009) was an American author and visual artist. All but the first of his novels either take place in or have an important connection to "Stay More," a fictional Ozark Mountains town based somewhat on Drakes Creek, Arkansas, where Harington spent summers as a child.
Harington was born and raised in Little Rock, Arkansas. He lost nearly all of his hearing at age 12 due to meningitis. This did not prevent him from picking up and remembering the vocabulary and modes of expression among the Ozark denizens, nor in conducting his teaching career as an adult.
Though he intended to be a novelist from a very early age, his course of study and his teaching career were in art and art history. He taught art history in New York City, New England, and South Dakota before returning to the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, his alma mater, where he taught for 22 years before his retirement on May 1, 2008.
Entertainment Weekly called him "America's greatest unknown writer." The novelist and critic Fred Chappell said of him "Donald Harington isn't an unknown writer. He's an undiscovered continent." Novelist James Sallis, writing in the Boston Globe: "Harington's books are of a piece -- the quirkiest, most original body of work in contemporary U.S. letters."
Harington died of pneumonia, after a long illness, in Springdale on November 7, 2009.
A 2013 biopic of Harington titled Stay More: The World of Donald Harington was created by filmmaker Brian Walter based upon interviews with Harington and his wife during 2006-2007, which was released in 2013 and is distributed by the University of Arkansas Press.[needs update]