“Peter,” is our story this month. Read it on the Willa Cather Archive here: https://cather.unl.edu/writings/shortfiction/ss019
This story is Cather’s first published work of fiction. Her professor, Herbert Bates, submitted it to The Mahogany Tree, a Boston based weekly literary journal. It ran in the May 1892 issue. Cather also published “Peter” in the November 24,1893 issue of The Hesperian, her college paper where she was the literary editor. This is the version/printing we’ll be reading. (See that issue here.)
I peeked at the opening lines of “Peter” and there are “thees” and “thous.” Will this be more of a proper story than a character sketch, as some pointed out about last month’s selection, “Lou, The Prophet“?
Mildred Aldrich (1853-1928)
A note on The Mahogany Tree. It was founded by Mildred Aldrich and produced for a year, from January to December 1892. At the end of that decade, Mildred moved to France where she worked as a foreign correspondent and translator. She became friends with Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas. During and after World War I, she published several nonfiction works related to the war and a novel. A few of these texts are available on Project Gutenberg.
Read “Peter” sometime this month and then come back to discuss it on the response post I’ll have up on the morning of February 24th. Feel free to comment here if you can’t wait.
New to this blog? Learn more about the Willa Cather Short Story Project here. In a nutshell, we’re reading one Cather short story a month. I remind everyone of what story we’re reading on the second Wednesday of the month and then share a response on the fourth Wednesday of the month. Jump in anytime!
P.S. Please note that this project is not intended to be scholarly. It’s a casual reading project.