Elmore Leonard was a prolific writer when he was alive, and in death, well, nothing has changed. He’s still got new work coming.
On June 16, William Morrow will publish “Charlie Martz and Other Stories,” a collection of 15 short stories by Leonard, 11 of which have never been published.
Leonard, who died in 2013 at the age of 87, published more than 50 books, starting with “The Bounty Hunters” in 1953. His earliest stories were pulp westerns, but he became known for the witty, swift-moving crime fiction of “Freaky Deaky” and “52 Pickup.”
The stories in the collection mark Leonard’s transition, written early on but never before published. The stories explore “new voices and locations, from the bars of small-town New Mexico and Michigan to a film set in Hollywood, a hotel in Southern Spain, even a military base in Kuala Lumpur,” William Morrow wrote in a news release. “They also introduce us to classic Leonard characters, some who recur throughout the collection, such as aging lawman Charlie Martz and weary former matador Eladio Montoya.”
Films made from Leonard’s work include “Get Shorty” and “Out of Sight.” The television series “Justified,” on which he is credited as a writer, was based on his short story “Fire in the Hole.”
Leonard had rules for writing that he turned into the slender, aptly-named book “Elmore Leonard’s 10 Rules of Writing.” “If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it,” he explained. And, equally important: “Try to leave out the part that readers tend to skip.”
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