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POSTED BY Buzz ON Aug 24, 2013 AT 01:06 IST ,  Edited At: Aug 24, 2013 01:06 IST

Janet Maslin in the NYT: Elmore Leonard: A Man of Few, Yet Perfect, Words:

Mr. Leonard, who died [last] Tuesday, will forever be admired for the sheer irresistibility of the stories he told. But his legacy is much larger. He was the most influential, widely imitated crime writer of his era, and his career was a long one: more than 60 years.

After he had worked in advertising long enough to learn to appreciate brevity and catchiness, he began writing pulp westerns. They weren’t that different from the crime books that would come later. The talk was tight and crisp, the action even more so, though Mr. Leonard also kept readers slightly off balance.

“You come to see me. How do you know I’m here?” the title character is asked in “Valdez Is Coming” (1970).

“You or somebody else,” Valdez replies. “It doesn’t matter.”

Mr. Leonard’s books did most of their work through dialogue, some of it hard-boiled, some delectably funny. Either way, the syntax was contagious, to the point where Mr. Leonard’s writing voice echoes every time another crime writer drops a subject or pronoun, links unrelated clauses with just a comma.

Martin Amis called attention to Mr. Leonard’s much-copied use of the present participle: “Warren Ganz, living up in Manalapan” was his way of saying “Warren Ganz lived up in Manalapan.” Just as distinctive were his capsule descriptions, like this one from “Djibouti,” about Somali pirates: “They on the sauce gettin millions for their ransom notes.” 

Read on at the NYT: Elmore Leonard: A Man of Few, Yet Perfect, Words

And, of course, we have his Ten Rules of Writing:

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FILED IN:  Literature|Obituaries
POSTED BY Buzz ON Aug 24, 2013 AT 01:06 IST, Edited At: Aug 24, 2013 01:06 IST
POSTED BY Buzz ON Nov 12, 2012 AT 20:15 IST ,  Edited At: Nov 12, 2012 20:15 IST

Finally, 15 years after the literary feud between Salman Rushdie and John Le Carré erupted in the letters pages of the Guardian in 1997, the latter has told the London Times "that their mutual loathing has finally come to an end."

Back in 1997, Rushdie had accused Le Carré  of promoting censorship and had gone on to characterise him as a "dunce" and a " pompous ass.'' Christopher Hitchens too had jumped in the exchange and said that Mr Le Carré 's conduct reminded him " that of a man who, having relieved himself in his own hat, makes haste to clamp the brimming chapeau on his head." 

"Two rabid ayatollahs could not have done a better job. But will the friendship last?" Mr Le Carré had countered, pointing out that he was more concerned about saving lives than about Mr Rushdie's royalties, and that Mr Rushdie was ''self-canonizing'' and ''arrogant.''

Mr Rushdie was allowed the last word by the newspaper, and had gone on to say about Mr Le Carré:  It's true I did call him a pompous ass, which I thought pretty mild in the circumstances. "Ignorant" and "semi-literate" are dunces' caps he has skilfully fitted on his own head.

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POSTED BY Buzz ON Nov 12, 2012 AT 20:15 IST, Edited At: Nov 12, 2012 20:15 IST
POSTED BY Sundeep Dougal ON Jun 06, 2012 AT 21:00 IST ,  Edited At: Jun 06, 2012 21:00 IST


"Telling the Truth," the keynote address of The Sixth Annual Writer's Symposium by the Sea, sponsored by Point Loma Nazarene University. 2001

"Libraries raised me. I don't believe in colleges and universities. I believe in libraries because most students don't have any money. When I graduated from high school, it was during the Depression and we had no money. I couldn't go to college, so I went to the library three days a week for 10 years... I read everything in the library. I read everything. I took out 10 books a week so I had a couple of hundred books a year I read, on literature, poetry, plays, and I read all the great short stories, hundreds of them. I graduated from the library when I was 28 years old. That library educated me, not the college."

Ray Bradbury's daughter Alexandra stated that he passed away in California on June 5, 2012, at the age of 91 

 

“When I was born in 1920,” he told the New York Times Magazine in 2000, “the auto was only 20 years old. Radio didn't exist. TV didn't exist. I was born at just the right time to write about all of these things.”

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POSTED BY Sundeep Dougal ON Jun 06, 2012 AT 21:00 IST, Edited At: Jun 06, 2012 21:00 IST
POSTED BY Sundeep Dougal ON Jul 16, 2011 AT 01:06 IST ,  Edited At: Jul 16, 2011 01:06 IST

Thanks to @PENamerican Via @shreedaisy on Twitter

Tolstoy saws tree, rides horse, carried in coffin on YouTube. Yes, that Tolstoy. http://ow.ly/5FDQZ via @CKlosterman @Grantland33

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FILED IN:  Books|Literature|Russia
POSTED BY Sundeep Dougal ON Jul 16, 2011 AT 01:06 IST, Edited At: Jul 16, 2011 01:06 IST
POSTED BY Buzz ON Jun 08, 2011 AT 06:26 IST ,  Edited At: Jun 08, 2011 06:26 IST
POSTED BY Buzz ON Jun 08, 2011 AT 06:26 IST, Edited At: Jun 08, 2011 06:26 IST
     
 
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