Elmer Kelton (1926–2009) was an award-winning author of more than forty novels. He won seven Spur Awards from Western Writers of America and four Western Heritage Awards from the National Cowboy Hall of Fame. He was also the recipient of the Owen Wister Lifetime Achievement award. His novel The Good Old Boys was made into a television film starring Tommy Lee Jones. He also wrote sixteen works of nonfiction. He grew up on a ranch near Crane, Texas, served in the infantry in World War II, and earned a journalism degree from the University of Texas. His first novel, Hot Iron, was published in 1956. In addition to his novels, he worked as an agricultural journalist for forty-two years.