Williams writes of the Southern experience in his works, developing themes that go beyond race and social class. His writing interest began at a young age in his hometown of Burgaw, and he channeled this interest into creative writing as a student at Morgan State College in Baltimore. After graduating, Williams moved to New York to pursue a career in the arts. For several years he wrote plays that were produced in obscure off-Broadway locations. In 1978, he finished his first successful play, HOME, but several years passed before it came to the attention of major producers, who took it to Broadway in 1980. Now that he has achieved success with this play, Williams is receiving new recognition for his other work.