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Perkins, Max[Well] Evarts

The Oxford Companion to American Literature

James D. Hart,

Phillip W. Leininger

Perkins, Max[Well] Evarts 


book editor whose name became synonymous with what every aspiring young editor wanted to be: discoverer and nurturer of genius. Perkins's career was entirely with Charles Scribner's Sons, where he was editor for Lardner, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Thomas Wolfe, and James Jones. All of these except Wolfe published exclusively with Scribner's. Perkins worked beyond the line of duty in helping Wolfe to cut and shape Look Homeward, Angel, by Wolfe's own testimony. Later Wolfe became sensitive to assertions that Perkins was helping too much, and took his last works to Harper, where another editor did the yeoman's work required for publication standards. Perkins's correspondence with his authors was published in 1950 as Editor to Author.

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