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A teenage stint in jail turned him into a crime novelist.
Born in Los Angeles, Edward Bunker (1933-2005) spent many years in prison before finding success as a novelist. He began writing while serving time at San Quentin, inspired by his proximity to the infamous death-row inmate Caryl Chessman. Bunker was still in jail when his first book, No Beast So Fierce, was published in 1973. After his release, he spent the rest of his life writing novels that drew on his prison experience. He played Mr. Blue in the film Reservoir Dogs.