The Friends of the Library continue their lecture series in December with author Leo W. Banks presenting his lecture, “Writing Arizona: From Journalism to Fiction,” on Wednesday, Dec. 20, at 2 p.m. in the R.H. Johnson Lecture Hall, 19803 R.H. Johnson Blvd.
This lecture is a free event, but tickets are required and can be picked up from the checkout desk at the R.H. Johnson Library. Books from the author will also be available for purchase.
During this lecture, Leo will talk about getting his start in journalism at the Arizona Daily Star in Tucson and moving on from there to writing more than 300 stories for Arizona Highways magazine. Throughout that time, he wrote fiction on the side, producing hundreds of pages of text that did not sell. He broke through in 2018 with his first novel, “Double Wide.” To learn more about Leo and his most recent works such as “The Flying Z,” visit his website at

About Leo W. Banks

About Leo W. Banks

After earning a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Arizona. Leo began his career as a reporter for the Arizona Daily Star in Tucson. He has been a correspondent for the L.A. Times and the Boston Globe, and has written frequently for Sports Illustrated, the Wall Street Journal and many other publications. Leo wrote for Arizona Highways magazine for 20 years, doing more than 300 stories for them and five books. He has won 38 statewide, regional, and national journalism awards.

In 2017, he switched to fiction. His first novel, Double Wide, won two Spur awards from the Western Writers of America – for Best First Novel and Best Western Contemporary Novel. The sequel, Champagne Cowboys, received a starred review from Publishers Weekly. Both are mystery novels set in Tucson.

Leo’s latest book, The Flying Z, is a contemporary western crime novel that’s also part love story. It describes the lives of southern Arizona rancher Will Zachary and newly arrived Harvard grad Merry O’Hara as they try to build a life together while battling a brutal drug cartel trying to take over the ranch.

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