Tin(II)O-ethylxanthate [Sn(S2COEt)2] was prepared and used as a single-source precursor for the deposition of SnS thin films by a melt method. Polycrystalline, (111) orientated, orthorhombic-SnS films with controllable elemental stoichiometries (of between Sn1.3S and SnS) were reliably produced by selecting heating temperatures between 200 and 400 °C. The direct optical band gaps of the SnS films ranged from 1.26 to 1.88 eV and were strongly influenced by its Sn/S ratio. The precursor [Sn(S2COEt)2] were characterised by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR). The as-prepared SnS films were characterised by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) spectroscopy, powder X-ray diffractometry (p-XRD), Raman spectroscopy and UV-Vis spectroscopy.