American novelist and playwright best known for his Civil War-era novels Sassafras and Gambler's Nephew.
He attended Ohio State University and obtained Bachelor's degrees in classics and English and a Master's degree in English.
He won a number of awards over the course of his career, including the 1967 Florence Roberts Head Award, a 1974 Guggenheim Fellowship, and a Major Artist Award from the Ohio Arts Council in 1989.
He had three children with his wife Barbara, to whom he was married for over sixty years.
The award-winning poet William Stafford was an admirer of his work.