October 11, 1925 – August 20, 2013
Elmore Leonard said something years ago that stuck with me: When something sounds like writing, I rewrite it.
I think that’s great advice for all of us–no matter what we write.
You can find a number of articles talking about Mr. Leonard and his writing during this time, or you can visit his website. Since I never met him, there’s nothing I can add except this:
Awhile back, I entered a mystery writing contest and asked for a critique. One of my judges wrote the following, and it’s the best compliment I’ve ever received on my writing.
Judge 1: There’s definitely a passion in your writing about the topic. I believe you genuinely are enthusiastic about the characters, and that shines through.You have a streamlined writing style very similar to Elmore Leonard, and it’s excellent. Work on pacing and plot, and your style will carry you far.
Rest in Peace, Mr. Leonard.
We’ll miss you.
And you won’t be forgotten.