Margaret Anderson, 33, founder and publisher of the six-year-old magazine The Little Review, doesn’t want to have to be here.
But her magazine needs money. Again. And this is one of the only ways she knows how to get it.
The lawyer she is waiting to see, patron of the arts John Quinn, 50, has been a key source of her funding for the past few years. The magazine’s foreign editor, American ex-pat poet Ezra Pound, 34, had brought them together. The first time they met, three years ago, at Quinn’s fashionable penthouse apartment, looking out over Central Park West, Anderson had been impressed. Quinn wanted to help bankroll the magazine, but also felt he could tell them how to run it. On an art collector-lawyer’s budget. Not realistic for a semi-monthly publication produced out of the Greenwich Village apartment she shares with her partner, Jane Heap, 36, editor of The Little Review.
Quinn had pulled together some American investors and given Pound money to find and pay Europe’s best poetry contributors for the magazine.
More recently, The Little Review has attracted the attention of the authorities, particularly the US Post Office. Quinn had defended the first charge brought against them for publishing an allegedly obscene short story which was distributed through the mails. Now their serialization of Ulysses, the latest work by Pound’s find, James Joyce, 38, the Irish writer living in Paris, has been under threat of confiscation. Quinn is going to defend them again, if needs be. Anderson hopes.
Now she needs more cash. She hadn’t even bothered to phone Quinn to ask if she could come by his office. Anderson is wearing one of her best grey suits; her blonde hair is tucked under her little black hat; she’s lost some weight; she’s learned the way to smile at Quinn to make him think that she just might be interested in him. [She isn’t.]
The Little Review is once again in danger of going under. Could Quinn go back to some of the original investors he’d rounded up and see if any is willing to provide more support? Being the first to publish Joyce’s work in America is a real coup.
Quinn is tired of asking his friends for cash. He gives Anderson a check for $200 and sends her away. He’s determined that this will be his last contribution to The Little Review. And regrets having given them this one.
“Such Friends”: 100 Years Ago… is the basis for the book, “Such Friends”: The Literary 1920s, to be published by K. Donnelly Communications. For more information, email me at email@example.com.
My presentation, “Such Friends”: Dorothy Parker and the Algonquin Round Table, is available to view on the website of PICT Classic Theatre. The program begins at the 11 minute mark, and my presentation at 16 minutes.
Manager as Muse, about Scribner’s editor Maxwell Perkins’ relationships with F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway and Thomas Wolfe, is available on Amazon in both print and Kindle versions.
This fall I will be talking about writers’ salons in Ireland, England, France and America before and after the Great War in the Osher Lifelong Learning programs at the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie-Mellon University.
.If you want to walk with me through Bloomsbury, you can download my audio walking tour, “Such Friends”: Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group.