Thursday 20 September 2012

Elmore Leonard wins Lifetime Achievement Award

Novelist Elmore Leonard – the skilful crime writer who produced such high-paced classics of the genre as “Out of Sight” and “Rum Punch” – is to become the latest recipient of a prestigious lifetime achievement award.

The 86 year old will receive the National Book Foundation’s Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, in New York on November 14th.

In receiving the coveted – if slightly longwinded – award, Leonard joins a list of luminaries that includes John Updike, Norman Mailer and Tom Wolfe.

After the news broke, Leonard answered questions about the award with characteristic humility;

"I was very surprised,” he said. “I didn't ever count on winning this kind of an award; I’ve won a lot of awards but not like this one.”

Leonard is expected to make a speech at the National Book Awards on the same evening, the organisers of which are requesting her trims down to only six minutes. We’ll see if he manages to adhere to such a limitation.

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