Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Working with Tony Hillerman

Rosemary Herbert worked on two anthologies with the great Tony Hillerman. And she loves sharing her stories about him, and his insights on his craft. 'It may seem that his use of landscape was effortless, but one day, as Tony in typically trusting manner turned on his computer and revealed to me his then-current novel in progress, he told me about how he made sure to make his descriptions of landscape advance the plot, rather than serve as self-indulgent digressions. “What I want to do here is develop the character of these of these two by what they stop to look at…They’re going to cross the Hopi reservation,” Tony said, describing the work in progress. “Okay, from this road there you can see literally miles of sagebrush on this great flat [expanse] and the hills roll away, and you can see San Francisco Peaks sixty, seventy miles away. Not a tree, not a bush, not a shrub! It’s really pure sagebrush country. And on the fence there, somebody’s painted a real neat sign that said, ‘Woodcutting Prohibited'."' More...

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