Monday, January 10, 2011

Ruth Cavin, R. I. P.

I just got the news that Ruth Cavin has passed away. Ruth was the mystery editor at Walker Books when she read the partial manuscript of the first Sheriff Rhodes book. When she wrote and said she wanted to buy the book, she said, "You are working on a sequel, aren't you?" So it's no exaggeration to say that Ruth is pretty much responsible for my career. While she was at Walker, she bought the first Carl Burns book, and when she moved to St. Martin's, Sheriff Rhodes and Carl made the move, too. She was a lovely woman, one of the nicest people I've met in publishing, and she continued to work until very recently, well into her nineties. It's no exaggeration to say that she was a publishing legend, but her accomplishments go way beyond that. My sympathies go out to her family and friends and to all the writers she nurtured and cared about. Judy and I will miss her tremendously.

There's a very fine tribute here.


  1. i didn't have the pleasure of working professionally with Ruth, but whenever we crossed paths she was always gracious and encouraging. A wonderful person. She will be missed.

  2. Gerard10:38 AM

    My thanks to her for taking on Sheriff Rhodes.

  3. Gar Haywood10:46 AM

    She was my first editor, too. What a smart and gracious lady. We were lucky to have her in our corner, Bill.

  4. That's the truth, Gar!

  5. Anonymous2:50 PM

    I remember when Jackie and Judy almost strongarmed you into visiting Ruth in her office in the Flatiron Building (it was the next stop after the Museum of Sex).

    Good times.

    She will be missed.


  6. I remember it well, and I'm very glad they did it.

  7. Sorry, folks. She certainly worked with good people and at houses trying to do good work.