December 31, 2013

2013: An American Literary Year in Review

Death of Mark Twain

Originally posted:
April 21, 2010
Readers seems fascinated that Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain) predicted his own death in 1910. Without question, this post is the most popular of all time (so far) — more than 8 times more popular than its nearest competitor (see below). Twain's headstone in Elmira, New York is pictured here.

Marriage of Edgar Poe

Originally posted:
May 16, 2010
Most readers seem to find this post through search engines as they incredulously wonder if Edgar Allan Poe really married his 13-year old cousin. (Yes, he did.) 

Death of Virginia Clemm Poe
Originally posted:
January 30, 2010
Fascination with Poe's relationship with his wife Virginia Clemm continues here, based at least part on his reaction to her death in 1847. This post also highlights Poe's most obvious literary work inspired by his wife, and its one few have read (it's not "Annabel Lee").

Dickinson: I'm nobody! Who are you?
Originally posted:
December 10, 2010
Emily Dickinson remains an enigmatic yet inspiring poet — and certainly, this poem of hers continues to intrigue poetry fans of all ages. 

De Forest: The Great American Novel
Originally posted:
January 9, 2011
This post highlights the author who popularized the term "Great American Novel," thereby inspiring an unending quest to meet a standard which few modern readers seem to notice more than coincidentally lined up with John William De Forest's own writings. Self-promotional, much?

Bierce: No trace of him was ever discovered
Originally posted:
September 3, 2012
Few authors have as mysterious an end as Ambrose Bierce, who disappeared without a trace. Making it even more mysterious is that Bierce wrote an ambiguous story about a man who also disappeared without a trace.

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