Did you know that William Dean Howells was born today in 1837? He was a novelist, poet, and literary critic. His father was a newspaper printer and editor. As a child, William worked as an apprentice to his father; he mixed tubs of ink and helped to set the type for printing. Later he worked as a reporter and taught himself French, German, and Spanish. William Dean Howells wrote poetry, realistic and science fiction, biographies, and dramatic works of farce. He reviewed the literature of his day and was an influence on readers and writers such as Mark Twain and Henry James.
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As a child William worked as a ‘printer’s devil’, or an apprentice to a printer.
During a visit to Boston, William Dean Howells visited with prominent writers such as Oliver Wendell Holmes, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Henry David Thoreau, and Ralph Waldo Emerson.
William Dean Howells worked as an editor for the prestigious journals The Atlantic Monthly and Harper’s Monthly.
William Dean Howells was a close friend and advisor to Mark Twain.
Tolstoy was a great influence on William Dean Howells.