Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Letters of William Gilmore Simms. Vol. 6, Supplement >> 116a Sarah Lawrence Drew Griffin >> Page 34

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Correspondence | U of South Carolina P | 2012
Transcription 34 THE SIMMS LETTERS
to define to your readers what you require for a prose tale, of what length &c.10 A small prize for the best essay of two or three pages might also be of good results. Of course you have the privilege of publishing such as you please of the unsuccessful articles. Mr. Hart has a subscriber for you, for whom you must send a copy. He, Mr. H., suggests that you should send a show copy of the work to him. He is an excellent man and will make a good agent.
I do not know what your calculations are. I trust you may not decieve yourself. I suppose you see the Magnolia." I think it not possible that such a work can be successful. It wants variety. Yours has enough; but subscriptions in the South are bad things, and correspondents not to be relied on. Your chance is better as your book is larger, better looking, and promises to compete on equal grounds with the Northern journals of the same class. In the number of pages you beat both the N. Y. Companion & Godey's Lady's Book.1z I have just bought one of your first books for children. I think it very good. It is not improbable that your Class Books for the South will take the lead of all others.—"
At this moment I am a laborer at the mill. I have some literary engagements with Northern publishers which scarcely leave me time for sleep. I have written you this scrawl, with tremulous fingers, after penning 20 pages foolscap. In the early part of the season
reprinted Simms'"Invocation" and followed it with seven other sonnets: "Contemplation,""Autumn Twilight,""Beauty Visions,""Minstrel Yearnings,""Continued,""The Peace of the Woods," and "The Rivulet."
10In her "Editorial Department," p. 64, Mrs. Griffin writes, "We would call the attention of writers to our advertisement for prize pieces.—See cover." In the only copy to which we have had access (that in the Emory University Library) the cover is not preserved. In her "Editorial Department" in the number for Jan. 15, 1841 (I, 256), she offers $200 for the best tale and $50 for the best poem submitted for publication in the Family Companion; she specifies no length, "as merit alone will be considered in the decision.""At this time Philip Coleman Pendleton was editor and publisher of the Magnolia (Savannah, Ga.). See note 79, Dec. 1, 1840 (95).
"Simms was a contributor to the Lathes' Companion (New York) and Godey's Lady's Book (Philadelphia).
"Mrs. Griffin was the author of The Southern Primary Reolor, The Southern Second Class Book, and The Southern Third Class Book, all published by her husband. See Bertram Holland Flanders, Early Georgia Magazines (Athens: The University of Georgia Press, 1941), p. 62.