The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 59, July 1955 - April, 1956 Page: 130
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
being written in the area. Since a goodly number of these stories
are dependent on their locale for only a small portion of their
effect, it is the latter function which this collection performs.
And it is a highly commendable function, for writers, partic-
ularly the more serious ones, have need of outlets for their work.
Many of the writers in this collection have not had any of their
stories published in book form before, so that their reading
public has been limited to the readers of the periodicals in which
they have published. And the periodical market for short stories
is limited, again particularly for the serious writer. Three period-
icals, the Southwest Review, the defunct Southern Review, and
Harper's Magazine, published almost all of the stories of the
"quality" caliber in this collection.
The commercial short story, the sort bought by the mass cir-
culation magazines to provide glossy diversion among the pages
of advertising, is also represented in the anthology, but these
stories are usually of only minor interest to anyone concerned
with the short story as a literary form. Their counterpart in the
novel is well described in the Sylvan Karchmer story.
Unfortunately the short story has had a difficult time in get-
ting itself recognized as anything but a stepchild of the novel,
a sort of exercise in fiction to be performed by the apprentice
novelist. But as Jerome Weidman, a non-Texan but an accom-
plished writer of short stories, has said, one might as well tell the
prospective writer of an epic poem to become a master of the
limerick as to tell the novelist to train on the short story. This
collection shows clearly that, although receptive of a variety of
treatments and forms, the short story is a specialized type of
writing and a separate art in itself. Something of the variety
possible in the form is exhibited in the book, and the editor fully
recognizes the value and importance of the genre. Perhaps its
printing will win more admirers for the form among those who
read the book solely because of their "love of things Texan."
Almost no given reader is entirely pleased with the selections
in an anthology; every editor knows that he cannot publish all
things for all people. But this collection seems at fault in two
respects in particular. The editor has overlooked at least three
early Texas writers who might well have been represented. John
C. Duval, Andy Adams, and Alexander Sweet, each of whom has
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 59, July 1955 - April, 1956, periodical, 1956; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101162/m1/148/: accessed March 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.