"A time came three decades ago, when I found I must choose between going out into the wider world or traveling widely in the microcosmos of Sac Prairie. I had been away from Sac Prairie scarcely half a year, immured in a city at editorial work, and I could ill bear separation from the village, the river, the hills, and the lowlands among which I had put down roots and with which I had come to terms of a sort ... When the opportunity came, I went back to Sac Prairie without regret ... I set about to write so that I might afford the leisure in which to improve my acquaintance with the setting and the inhabitants--hills, trees, ponds, people, birds, animals, sun, moon, stars--of the region I had chosen to inhabit, not as a retreat, but as a base of operations into a life more full in the knowledge of what went on in the woods as well as in the houses along the streets of Sac Prairie and in the human heart." - August Derleth, "Prologue" to Walden West
"Home is one's ideal setting if one is to develop one's best attributes … A man belongs where he has roots--where the landscape & milieu have some relation to his thoughts & feelings, by virtue of having formed them." - H. P. Lovecraft (Letter to August Derleth, October 6, 1929)
WISCONSIN IN HIS BONES
By Boyd White and Lloyd Currey
For scholars, collectors, and readers, August Derleth (1909-1971) unfortunately begins and ends with Arkham House. Derleth is primarily remembered for preserving the literary legacy of H. P. Lovecraft, as well as Robert E. Howard and Clark Ashton Smith, in addition to publishing first books by Ray Bradbury, Robert Bloch, Fritz Leiber, and Ramsey Campbell. A relentless self-promoter, somewhat understandably given the non-existent profit margins of specialty press publishing, Derleth flirted with self-parody throughout his career, particularly after the demise of Weird Tales in 1954 when his focus became codifying and exploiting the Cthulhu Mythos as the defining element of Lovecraft's fiction in order to keep flagging public interest in the author's work--and by extension Arkham House--alive, providing a template for an unending flood of bad Lovecraft pastiches in a variety of media that shows no signs of abating even today.
By devoting so much energy and resources to ensuring Lovecraft's legacy, keeping Arkham House afloat, financially supporting an older generation of all but forgotten pulp writers, and encouraging promising new talent, Derleth inadvertently sabotaged his own literary career, ensuring his reputation as an author with substantial contributions to American literature would be overshadowed and neglected. Derleth considered his supernatural fiction mediocre at best, derivative and formulaic work that, along with his mystery stories and detective novels, provided him not only with the means to be a full-time writer with the leisure to pursue his more literary ambitions but also, later in his career, with the ability to meet his obligations as a publisher. "My prolificacy," he once wrote, "is a matter of economic necessity, and I have no doubt that the quality of my work has suffered to some extent because of its necessary quantity."
In "The Un-Demonizing of August Derleth," Peter Ruber notes that Derleth is the only member of the Weird Tales circle "who had the ability, ambition, and determination to rise above the level of a pulp writer," a sentiment shared by H. P. Lovecraft. When Derleth's story "Five Alone," first published in Pagany, received a three-star mention in Edward J. O'Brien's Honor Roll in The Best American Short Stories of 1932, Lovecraft wrote to E. Hoffmann Price, "You will see in these things a writer absolutely alien to the facile little hack who grinds out minor W.T. [Weird Tales] junk. There is nothing in common betwixt Derleth A and Derleth B--no point of contact in their mental worlds--and yet one brain houses them both … artist and businessman … Nearly all the gang agree that the kid will go far in literature--probably farther than any of the rest." Lovecraft's remarks, however, also highlight the tension that would haunt Derleth throughout his career as his continued immersion in the cesspool of market-driven fantastic fiction kept him from being recognized as a major Midwestern author of the twentieth century. As Peter Ruber states, "To the world outside his home state, Derleth was a man of many literary personas, and they frequently clashed: the critical establishment looked down on Derleth's continued involvement with pulp-type writing and ignored his serious works. They simply didn't understand his versatility."
Derleth always referred to his literary efforts as his "serious work." His greatest achievement in this vein is the Sac Prairie Saga, a deeply personal, frank, detailed account of the rural Midwest that draws upon his lifetime of personal experiences in and around the twin Wisconsin villages of Sauk City and Prairie du Sac. Derleth originally conceived of this saga as a sequence of fifty books consisting of novels, novellas, short stories, poetry, journal extracts, and nature writing. In an interview with Norbert Blei from 1971, Derleth remarks of his hometown, "This is the microcosm that reflects the macrocosm. Everything is to be found here--hate, greed, lust, love, sacrifice, courage. I saw it. It's all here! I can find every kind of perversity, sexual or otherwise." From the publication of Place of Hawks in 1935 to Return to Walden West in 1970, the Sac Prairie Saga reflects Derleth’s adherence to the transcendentalism of Emerson and Thoreau and the literary influences of Thomas Hardy, Sherwood Anderson, Edgar Lee Masters, and Robert Frost. Displaying Derleth's vast knowledge of regional history and nature, Sac Prairie, Wisconsin, is as fully rendered as Willa Cather's Nebraska plains or William Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha County. Novels such as Still Is the Summer Night (1937), short story collections such as Country Growth (1940), and volumes of poetry such as West of Morning (1960) are infused with the rhythms of the land and the people who live there, what is locked away in their hearts and the region itself, a beautiful but unforgiving landscape in which the villagers of Sac Prairie struggle with frustrated ambitions and lost ideals, a world fraught with loneliness, insanity, alcoholism, and suicide. In a 1945 article in Esquire, Nobel laureate Sinclair Lewis writes of Derleth, "His series of the 'Sac Prairie Saga,' most of them novels, is already formidable. He has not trotted off to New York literary cocktail parties or to the Hollywood studios. He has stayed home and built up a solid work that demands the attention of anybody who believes that American fiction is at last growing up … He is a champion and justification of regionalism." Likewise, John O. Stark describes Walden West (1961) and Return to Walden West, Derleth's masterpieces, "as the closest thing we have to essential literary illuminations of life in Wisconsin … In both books Derleth alternates descriptions of nature and vignettes about Sac Prairie people … Derleth compares the human and natural realms, pointing out the transience of the former, the constancy of the latter, the desperation of the former, the peace of the latter."
Key works from the Sac Prairie Saga include the short story collections that Derleth considered his finest works--Country Growth, Sac Prairie People (1948), and Wisconsin in Their Bones--as well as Walden West and Return to Walden West. The intimate, poetic observations of village life in these books introduce readers to finely drawn heartbreaking characters portrayed with sincere pathos, including Ella Bickford, who goes insane when her parents prevent her from marrying, and Norman Kralz, whose mother tries to poison him. Far more chilling than Derleth's supernatural fiction are the superb midwestern Gothics scattered throughout the Sac Prairie Saga, particularly the studies of aberrant psychology in The House of Moonlight (1953), which traces the mental and physical breakdown of concert pianist Joel Merrihew when he returns to Sac Prairie after a long absence, and "Where the Worm Dieth Not" (from Sac Prairie People) in which young lovers Horace Burdace and Laura Kelton run afoul of Horace's murderous uncle Anson Nohr. Historical novels such as The House on the Mound (1958) and The Shadow on the Glass (1963) form the backdrop against which Derleth develops the Sac Prairie Saga as they chronicle the lives of prominent Wisconsinites from the state's formative years, including Hercules Dousman, a fur trader and real estate speculator who became a millionaire, and Nelson Dewey, Wisconsin's first governor who oversaw the transition from territorial to state government. Collections of poetry, including Here on a Darkling Plain (1940), Rind of Earth (1942), and The Edge of Night (1945), feature some of Derleth's most carefully crafted, moving writing, such as his epitaph for Effie Kahlmann, who "left behind in needlework most exquisitely made, her tears, her loneliness, the hidden places of her heart."
Derleth's deep connection to his native Wisconsin extends to the author's strongest non-supernatural genre fiction as well. Sac Prairie serves as the setting not only for Derleth's Judge Peck detective novels, such as Murder Stalks the Wakely Family (1934) and The Seven Who Waited (1943), but also for the majority of his books for juveniles, including the Steve-Sim mysteries with the Mill Creek Irregulars. Set in the 1920s, this series follows Stephen "Steve" Grendon and Simoleon "Sim" Jones as they foil a variety of criminal plots during their summer adventures in the Wisconsin River Valley. As Steve’s description of the scene of one of his and Sim’s nighttime rambles illustrates, these young adult mysteries exhibit the same keen attention to the natural word--the light, weather, and water--as Derleth's poetry and fiction for adults: "All along the south now, between us and the river, where the marshes were and the lowland meadows, a thin bank of fog was rising. With moonlight on it, it looked like a distant lake. And with the fireflies flickering on it by the thousands, it looked as if a sunken city lay far beneath the surface of that mysterious lake out of which came the far sound of cow bells from cattle in the night pasture." Not surprisingly, Steve Grendon is August Derleth's fictional alter ego, and his recurrence throughout much of Derleth's fiction--as an adolescent boy detective in The Moon Tenders (1958), a high school student in love in Evening In Spring (1941) and a budding writer in The Shield of the Valiant (1945)--shapes Derleth's work, as does the setting of Sac Prairie, into a living, breathing world subject to the same forces, both good and bad, we all encounter as we age and grow.
In his foreword to 1962’s 100 Books by August Derleth, Donald Wandrei perhaps best sums ups Derleth's career, which still had nearly a decade to go, when he writes, "This variety of interest makes it impossible to identify the work of August Derleth by any label or to classify him easily--he is sui generis … But only the distant verdict of time can determine which of his works will have the most enduring value." As George Feinstein was praising Return to Walden West in The Los Angeles Times by proclaiming, "One needs to be reminded that America has never been all big city. The village plays its role--and in August Derleth--has found a Homer," Derleth's reputation, even as regionalist, was already waning. When he died a year later in 1971, he had received very little of the recognition as a writer that he so desperately craved and deserved. These days, when every cramped note or itemized budget Lovecraft managed to scribble on the back of an envelope is endlessly analyzed and scrupulously annotated, Derleth’s considerable oeuvre, flawed as it is, lies fallow with no major critical overview or appraisal in sight. Upon publication of Hawk on the Wind (1938), Derleth’s first book of poetry, Edgar Lee Masters wrote, "The music and imagination of these poems, the originality of the verse schemes in this day when so many experiments have been made and so many have failed--these cannot be forgotten." The same could easily be said of the best of Derleth’s work. Let us hope this is the case.
MARK SHORER ON AUGUST DERLETH
August Derleth is almost certainly the most prolific of modern American writers and, the author of well over one hundred books, perhaps of American writers in all time. He is also among the most various. Except for the very long poem and the drama, he has probably published in every current literary form, and not once in each but many times. His fiction itself is extremely various, not only in a formal sense--short story, novelette, novel--but also in a generic sense, ranging as it does from the macabre story and the mystery novel to the poetic novelette and the historical chronicle, and, what is more, addressing itself now to an adult, now to a juvenile audience.
He is above all a novelist of place, and the place is his homeplace, which he calls "Sac Prairie" but which is in fact the two little adjoining villages named Sauk City and Prairie du Sac. These little towns on the Wisconsin River are set among marshland, hills, and prairie, and they provide the intimately experienced natural detail of most of Derleth’s writing as they also provide the prototypes for many of his characters. Beyond Sac Prairie is the entire state of Wisconsin and its history since early pioneer times. These two settings, the small one within the larger, divide his most important fiction into two sets of novels which he designates as "Sagas"--the Sac Prairie Saga, consisting of eight novels, and the Wisconsin Saga, consisting of five. But the Sac Prairie Saga spills over into other works, into at least seven books of short stories, at least six works of miscellaneous or discursive prose, and into a dozen volumes of verse.
The novels in the saga series comprise Derleth’s most substantial work. Solidly constructed historical narratives, based on a sure sense of past achievement, evolving growth, and the inevitable currents of change, these novels move through a wide range of effects, from the bucolically comic through the delicately pathetic to the dramatically tragic, and the vast case of characters similarly ranges from country clowns to fabled heroes. Through all their variety there is one constant element, Derleth’s profound feeling for an intimate knowledge of the natural environment, and this feeling works paradoxically in, on the one hand, recreating vividly and with deep affection the particular locality that he has made his own, and on the other, through the universal rhythms of nature, moving his narratives beyond any special time and place into the timeless and enduringly human.
Substantial as his achievement in the sagas is, Derleth’s own preferences (and those of many of his readers) are for other work. Notable among these in the fiction is his early lyric tale of adolescent love, Evening in Spring. But perhaps even more impressive are two books that are not fiction at all even though they give us the very roots of his fiction, books made up of entries from his journals with sharp observation of village life and the natural life around it. He called them Walden West and Return to Walden West, and it is probable that they are classics of their kind.
From Contemporary Novelists, edited by James Vinson. London: St. James Press, New York, St. Martin's Press, , p. 347. A childhood friend of August Derleth, Mark Shorer (1908-1977) was a leading critic of his time, known for Sinclair Lewis: An American Life (1961), which was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for biography. In the summer of 1931 after August Derleth’s graduation from college, Shorer and Derleth rented a cabin near the Wisconsin River where they spent a few weeks collaborating together, often writing a story a day, most of which were accepted for publication by pulp magazines such as Weird Tales and later collected in Colonel Markesan and Less Pleasant People (1966).
SELECTED FURTHER READING
By L. W. Currey
The more important or informative studies, essays and articles on Arkham House and Derleth's life and work. Items of special interest are marked with an asterisk.
* Archer, Marion Fuller. "The Juvenile Books of August Derleth." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS (1993), pp. 29-43. Reprinted in Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 105-132.
Ashley, Mike. "Hands Across the Ocean." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS (1993), pp. 1-10.
"August Derleth." In: CONTEMPORARY LITERARY CRITICISM. Detroit, MI: Gale, 1985. Volume 31, pp. 126-139.
* AUGUST DERLETH SOCIETY NEWSLETTER. Edited by Richard H. Fawcett, later Kay Price. 1978 (volume 1, number 1) through June 2019 (volume 40, number 2). For contents through volume 17, numbers 1-2, see AUGUST W. DERLETH (1909-1971): A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL CHECKLIST OF HIS WORKS (1996), pp. 60-69.
* Bishop, Zealia. "A Wisconsin Balzac: A Profile of August Derleth." In: THE CURSE OF YIG. Sauk City: Arkham House, 1953, pp. 153-175.
* Blei, Norbert. "August Derleth: Storyteller of Sac Prairie." Chicago Tribune Magazine, 15 August 1971. Collected in Dutch, William, and Others. AUGUST W. DERLETH (1909-1971): A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL CHECKLIST OF HIS WORKS (1996), pp. 9-20.
Blei, Norbert. "Hills, Trees, Ponds, People, Birds, Animals, Sun, Moon, Stars: The Walden Books." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS (1993), pp. 11-19. Reprinted in Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 82-95.
Campbell, Ramsey. "Afterword: The Past Lies in Wait." In: Campbell, Ramsey and August Derleth, LETTERS TO ARKHAM: THE LETTERS OF RAMSEY CAMPBELL AND AUGUST DERLETH, 1961-1971. Hornsea, England: PS Publishing, 2014, pp. 391-395.
Campbell, Ramsey. "Chasing the Unknown." In: Campbell, Ramsey. COLD PRINT. London: Grafton, 1987. [Not seen.]
Copper, Basil. "The Game’s Afoot: August Derleth and Solar Pons." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS VOLUME TWO (1995), pp. 1-6.
* Currey, Lloyd W. "August William Derleth." In: SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY AUTHORS: A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF FIRST PRINTINGS OF THEIR FICTION AND SELECTED NONFICTION. Boston: G. K. Hall & Co., , pp. -155. Revised and corrected, 2002 on searchable CD-ROM.
David, Donna. "The Borrowed Cast: The Use of Characters in August Derleth’s Writings." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS VOLUME TWO (1995), pp. 8-18.
Derleth, August. "American Regional Literature." Madison, WI: College of Agriculture, University of Wisconsin, n.d. [circa 1940], pp. 16.
* Derleth, August. ["Autobiography."] In: Kunitz, Stanley J. and Howard Haycraft, eds., TWENTIETH CENTURY AUTHORS: A BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF MODERN LITERATURE. New York: H. W. Wilson Company, 1942, pp. 373-374; and First Supplement, 1955, p. 275. Autobiographical sketch, plus brief bibliographical checklist of publications.
* Derleth, August. "Autobiography." www. catholicauthors.com/derleth.html
* Derleth, August. "An Autobiography." In: Dutch, William, and Others. AUGUST W. DERLETH (1909-1971): A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL CHECKLIST OF HIS WORKS (1996), pp. 3-7. Written circa 1961.
Derleth, August. "H. P. Lovecraft: The Making of a Literary Reputation, 1937-1971." Books at Brown 25 (1977), pp. 13-25.
Derleth, August. "My Life in Poetry." See HAWK & WHIPPOORWILL RECALLED (1973).
Derleth, August. "On Publishing a Little Magazine." Hawk & Whippoorwill IV:3 (1963), pp. 79-81.
Derleth, August. 100 BOOKS BY AUGUST DERLETH. Sauk City, WI: Arkham House: Publishers, 1962, pp. 121.
* Derleth, August. THIRTY YEARS OF ARKHAM HOUSE 1939-1969: A HISTORY AND BIBLIOGRAPHY. Sauk City, WI: Arkham House, 1970, pp. 99.
Derleth, August. "The Weird Tale in English Since 1890." The Ghost 3 (May 1945), pp. 5-34. Derleth's B.A. thesis at the University of Wisconsin, 1930, with bibliography and "covering letter" added.
Derleth, August. WRITING FICTION. Boston: The Writer, Inc. Publishers, , pp. xii, 201. "The Imaginative Story," pp. 96-159, is a major early critique of fantastic fiction to place on the shelf next to H. P. Lovecraft's "Supernatural Horror in Literature."
Dutch, William and Others. "A Bibliographical Checklist of the Books of August Derleth." In: Dutch, William and Others. AUGUST W. DERLETH (1909-1971): A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL CHECKLIST OF HIS WORKS (1996), pp. 21-39.
Dyke, Bill, ed. REMEMBERING DERLETH. Sauk City, WI: Published by The August Derleth Society, 1988, pp. 112. A useful miscellany of articles, tributes, reminiscences, and photographs.
* Dziemianowicz, Stefan. "August William Derleth." In: Pringle, David, ed., ST. JAMES GUIDE TO HORROR, GHOST & GOTHIC WRITERS. Detroit, MI: St. James Press, 1998, pp. 177-181.
* Eng, Steve. "August Derleth: Friend of Fantasy Poetry." In: Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 151-160.
Fawcett, Richard. "Middle America in Amber: An Introduction." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS (1993), pp. i-ii.
Ferguson, Malcolm M. "In Re: August Derleth -- A Tribute." The Capital Times, Madison, WI, 5 November 1973.
* Ferguson, Malcolm M. "Walden Rendezvous: A View from Wisconsin." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS (1993), pp. 47-52. Reprinted in Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 96-104.
* Gerberding, Rodger. "The Gentle Engraver: August Derleth & Frank Utpatel." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS VOLUME TWO (1995), pp. 85-96.
Grage, Charles. THE USED BOOK PRICE REFERENCE FOR THE IMPRINTS OF ARKHAM HOUSE. [Atlantic Beach, FL: Charles Grage], 1996, pp. [x], 84.
* Hadji, Robert (Robert Knowlton). "August William Derleth (1909-1971)." In: Sullivan, Jack, ed. THE PENGUIN ENCYCLOPEDIA OF HORROR AND THE SUPERNATURAL. [New York]: Viking, , pp 122-123.
* Haefele, John D. "Arkham House Ephemera: The Modern Years." In: Firsts: The Book Collector's Magazine. September-October 2019 (volume 29, number 9-10), pp. 24-32. A checklist is scheduled to appear in the November-December 2019 issue. There was an earlier article in Firsts on Arkham House ephemera (in the October 2002 issue) which I can't lay my hands on to verify at this moment.
* Haefele, John D. AUGUST DERLETH REDUX: THE WEIRD TALE 1930-1971: A MONOGRAPH. Foreword by Don Herron. N.p. [Denmark]: H. Harksen Productions, 2009, pp. 72.
Haefele, John D. A LOOK BEHIND THE DERLETH MYTHOS: ORIGINS OF THE "CTHULHU MYTHOS." N.p.: [Published by The Cimmerian Press A Division of LMG Books, 2014], pp. . This edition was preceded by a limited hardbound edition published in 2012 in Denmark by H. Harksen Productions. [Not seen.]
HAWK & WHIPPOORWILL RECALLED. Madison: The Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets, Summer 1973 (volume 1, number 1). This first issue "devoted to the memory of August Derleth" includes Derleth's "My Life in Poetry," excerpts from his final public address, delivered 11 June 1971 at Edgewood College in Madison, Wisconsin, before delegates to the annual convention of the National Federation of State Poetry Societies.
Howard, John. "Somebody Pointed Earth: August Derleth’s Science Fiction." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS VOLUME TWO (1995), pp. 53-59.
Howard, [John] Nic. AUGUST DERLETH’S POETRY: A SURVEY. Haddenham, England: Tumulka Press, 1983. [Not seen.]
Howard, [John] Nic. THE HORRORS OUT OF WISCONSIN: AUGUST DERLETH’S CTHULHU MYTHOS FICTION. Haddenham, England: Tumulka Press, 1986. [Not seen.]
Howard, [John] Nic, ed. MASTERS OF FANTASY 2: AUGUST DERLETH. Birmingham: British Fantasy Society, 1984, pp. 24. Includes Nic Howard's "Derleth: An American Life in Literature," pp. 5-12; 19, and Nic Howard's "Dark Glory: Derleth's Achievements," pp. 13; 19.
IS. October 1971 (number 4). Edited by Tom Collins. The "August Derleth Memorial Issue." Contributions by Robert Bloch, Ray Bradbury, Lin Carter, Fritz Leiber, Frank Belknap Long, E. Hoffmann Price, and others.
Jacobi, Carl. "Memories of August." Is 6 (1972), pp. 25-29.
Jaffery, Sheldon R. THE ARKHAM HOUSE COMPANION: FIFTY YEARS OF ARKHAM HOUSE. A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY AND COLLECTOR'S PRICE GUIDE TO ARKHAM HOUSE / MYCROFT & MORAN INCLUDING THE REVISED AND EXPANDED HORRORS AND UNPLEASANTRIES. [Mercer Island, WA]: Starmont House, Inc., 1989, pp. xvi, 184.
Jaffery, Sheldon R. HORRORS AND UNPLEASANTRIES: A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY & COLLECTOR'S PRICE GUIDE TO ARKHAM HOUSE. [Bowling Green, OH: Bowling Green State University Popular Press, 1982.], pp. 142.
* Joshi, S. T. SIXTY YEARS OF ARKHAM HOUSE: A HISTORY AND BIBLIOGRAPHY. [Sauk City, WI]: Arkham House Publishers, 1999, pp. viii, 281.
* Lewis, Sinclair. "The Sac of Fortune." Esquire, November 1945, pp. 78-79.
Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN. [New York]: Magico Magazine, , pp. 6, vi, 172.
Litersky, Dorothy M. Grobe. DERLETH: HAWK -- AND DOVE, Aurora, CO: National Writers Press, 1997, pp. x, 228.
* Long, Frank Belknap. "The Contributions of August Derleth to the Supernatural Horror Story as Author, Critic, Anthologist and Publisher." In: Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 1-12. Reprinted in Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS VOLUME TWO (1995), pp. 61-70.
* Meudt, Edna. "The Poetry of August Derleth." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS (1993), pp. 57-74. Reprinted in Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 133-150.
* Moore, Harry Thornton. "Derleth of Sac Prairie," The Amateur Writer. November 1939 (volume 1, number 1), pp. 3-6. "An interesting and perceptive article written when Derleth was seemingly on the threshold of fame." - Wilson.
Moskowitz, Sam. "Derleth’s Lament to Love." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS VOLUME TWO (1995), pp. 71-84. Not a very informative article.
Moskowitz, Sam. "I Remember Derleth." Starship 18:1 (Spring 1981), pp. 7-14.
* Olsen, T. V. "August Derleth's Historical Novels." In: Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 30-68. Reprinted in Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS VOLUME TWO (1995), pp. 19-51.
Price, E. Hoffmann. "August Derleth, 1909-1971." SFWA Bulletin 7:2 (1971), p. 4.
Price, E. Hoffmann. "August W. Derleth." In Price, E. Hoffmann. BOOK OF THE DEAD: FRIENDS OF YESTERYEAR: FICTIONEERS & OTHERS (MEMORIES OF THE PULP FICTION ERA). With an Introduction by Jack Williamson. Edited by Peter Ruber. [Sauk City, WI]: Arkham House, 2001, pp. 267-295.
Price, Kay. WHO WAS AUGUST DERLETH? Sauk City, WI: Geranium Press, 1992. [Not seen.]
Price, Kay, ed. A DERLETH COLLECTION. Sauk City, WI: Geranium Press, 1993, pp. [vi], 61. A miscellany of Derleth's writings published by the August Derleth Society, including "Arkham House: A Thumbnail Story," first published in The Fossil, October 1950, and "Novels at 1,000 words a Day, first published in Writer's Review, January 1934.
Roberts, James P. "August Derleth." In: Roberts, James P. FAMOUS WISCONSIN AUTHORS. Oregon, WI: Badger Books Inc., 2002, pp. 35-49.
* Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS. [Madison, WI]: White Hawk Press, [1993; 1995]. Two volumes, pp. 74; 96.
Roberts, James P. "Introduction: Where is August Derleth Today?" In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS VOLUME TWO (1995), pp. i-ii.
* Ruber, Peter. "The Un-demonizing of August Derleth." In: Ruber, Peter, ed. ARKHAM'S MASTERS OF HORROR: A 60th ANNIVERSARY ANTHOLOGY RETROSPECTIVE OF THE FIRST 30 YEARS OF ARKHAM HOUSE. Edited and with Historical Notes by Peter Ruber. [Sauk City, WI]: Arkham House Publishers, 2000, pp. 3-33.
* Schroth, Evelyn M. THE DERLETH SAGA. Appleton, WI: Quintain Press, , pp. 87. A survey of Derleth's Sac Prairie Saga -- the fiction, the poetry and the journals -- a revision and updating of Schroth's Master's thesis.
* Schorer, Mark. "August William Derleth." In: Vinson, James, ed., CONTEMPORARY NOVELISTS. London: St. James Press, New York, St. Martin's Press, , pp. 342-347.
Smedegaard, Paul B. "Pons and Predecessor." In: Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 13-29.
Sneyd, Steve. "Making Poets Less Alone." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS (1993), pp. 44-46.
* Spencer, Paul. "The Shadow Over Derleth." In: Schweitzer, Darrell, ed., DISCOVERING CLASSIC HORROR FICTION I. [Mercer Island, WA]: Starmont House, 1992, pp. 114-119.
Squires, Roy A., ed. THE PHIL MAYS COLLECTION OF ARKHAM HOUSE EPHEMERAE: A DESCRIPTIVE LISTING. Glendale, CA: Roy A. Squires, 1985, pp. 11. See Haefele above for a continuation.
Stark, John O. "The Sac Prairie Saga." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS (1993), pp. 21-27. Reprinted as "The Sac Prairie Sage" in Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 69-81.
* Stark, John O. "Wisconsin Writers: August Derleth (1909-1971)." In: THE STATE OF WISCONSIN 1977 BLUE BOOK, Compiled by Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau. Madison, WI: Department of Administration, Document Sales and Distribution, 1977, pp. 165-177.
Stephens, Jim, ed. AN AUGUST DERLETH READER. Madison, WI: Prairie Oak Press, 1992. [Not seen.]
* Tweet, Roald D. "August Derleth." In: Bleiler, E. F., ed. SUPERNATURAL FICTION WRITERS. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, , pp. 883-890.
Wandrei, Donald. "Foreword." In: Derleth, August. 100 BOOKS BY AUGUST DERLETH (1962), pp. 5-.
Wilson, Alison M. "Addenda to the August Derleth Bibliography." In: Dutch, William and Others. AUGUST W. DERLETH (1909-1971): A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL CHECKLIST OF HIS WORKS (1996), pp. 40-58.
* Wilson, Alison M. AUGUST DERLETH: A BIBLIOGRAPHY. Metuchen, N.J., & London: The Scarecrow Press, Inc., 1983, pp. 4, xxvi, 229. Includes a short but useful introduction, "Derleth's Literary Reputation," pp. xi-xiv.
* Wilson, Alison M. "Judge Peck -- An Eccentric Hero Who Never Found His Audience." In: Liebow, Ely M., ed. AUGUST HARVEST: ESSAYS PENNED BY VARIOUS HANDS TO KEEP THE MEMORY OF AUGUST DERLETH GREEN (1994), pp. 161-172.
* Wilson, Colin. "A Touch of Tragedy." In: Roberts, James P., ed. RETURN TO DERLETH: SELECTED ESSAYS (1993), pp. 53-55.Read More