Elmore Leonard

Novelist + Screenwriter
Born Oct 11, 1925

Elmore John Leonard Jr. is an American novelist and screenwriter. His earliest published novels in the 1950s were westerns, but Leonard went on to specialize in crime fiction and suspense thrillers, many of which have been adapted into motion pictures. Among his best-known works are Get Shorty, Out of Sight, Hombre, Mr. Majestyk and Rum Punch, which was filmed as Jackie Brown.… Read More

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News + Updates

Browse recent news and stories about Elmore Leonard.

  • How To Win Those Pesky Book Challenges
    Huffington Post - Dec 14, 2016
  • Shivshankar Menon On Books And Writing
    Huffington Post - Oct 30, 2016
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    'the Drifter,' A Conversation With Nicholas Petrie
    Huffington Post - Jan 14, 2016
  • S default mini
    'written In Fire,' A Conversation With Marcus Sakey
    Huffington Post - Jan 12, 2016


Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of Elmore Leonard.


1925 Birth Born on October 11, 1925.


1943 17 Years Old He graduated from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School in 1943 and immediately joined the Navy, where he served with the Seabees for three years in the South Pacific (gaining the nickname "Dutch", after pitcher Dutch Leonard).


1946 20 Years Old Enrolling at the University of Detroit in 1946, he pursued writing more seriously, entering his work in short story contests and sending it off to magazines.
1949 23 Years Old He married Beverly Clare Cline in 1949, and they had five children together—three daughters and two sons—before divorcing in 1977.
1950 24 Years Old He graduated in 1950 with a bachelor's degree in English and philosophy. … Read More
1951 25 Years Old Leonard had his first success in 1951 when Argosy published the short story "Trail of the Apaches". … Read More
1953 27 Years Old He wrote his first novel, The Bounty Hunters, in 1953 and followed this with four other novels. … Read More


1969 43 Years Old He went on to write seventeen novels and stories in the mystery, crime, and more topical genres which were made into movies between 1969 and 2013. … Read More


1979 53 Years Old His second marriage in 1979, to Joan Leanne Lancaster (aka Joan Shepard), ended with her death in 1993.


2012 86 Years Old Later that same year, he married Christine Kent, and they divorced in 2012.
2013 87 Years Old 1 More Event
Leonard spent the last years of his life with his family in Oakland County, Michigan. He suffered a stroke on July 29, 2013.
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