Talking Book

A First Collective Endeavour


Later on, I came to hear that he had submitted another short story manuscript entitled “Rena Walden” to the offices of Houghton Mifflin, where I then worked, along with the respectable Francis J. Garrison – a true son of his abolitionist father, William Lloyd! – and George H. Mifflin himself. This work was good, but Houghton Mifflin rejected it with a number of stipulations. I felt this out to be quite a shame, so I considered it in my highest interests to acquaint more closely with Mr. Chestnutt. Together, we worked on Rena Walden till it was fleshed out into the form we published under the name The House Behind The Cedars. Admittedly, the literary world seemed to be somehow split on this depiction of the many quandaries that accompany mixed individual in our complicated South. Some gentleman from The Chicago Daily Tribune noted he preferred the short story to our novelized version, and perhaps that is fair, as the novel was not a particularly robust success. However, I anticipate that Chestnutt will be an invaluable colleague for some time to come – I will do my best to nurture his voice and keep him near. 

Return to game