Peter Taylor (1917–1994) established himself as a master of short fiction and is the author of short story collections, novels, and plays. A native of Tennessee, his first book, A Long Fourth and Other Stories, was published by Harcourt Brace Javonovich in 1948. Other publications of note are The Collected Stories of Peter Taylor (Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 1969, published in paperback by Picador), In the Miro District and Other Stories (Alfred A. Knopf, 1977, reissued in the Voices of the South Series by Louisiana State University Press in 2002), The Old Forest and Other Stories (Doubleday, 1985, published in paperback by Picador), A Summons to Memphis (Knopf, 1986, published in paperback by Vintage Contemporaries), The Oracle at Stoneleigh Court (Knopf, 1993), and In the Tennessee Country (Knopf, 1994, published in paperback by Picador).
Taylor’s stories also appeared regularly in The New Yorker, The Kenyon Review, and other magazines. He received wide recognition through grants and awards during his career. These included a Guggenheim Fellowship and a grant from the National Institute of Arts and Letters. He was also awarded a Gold Medal for Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters for In the Miro District; the PEN/Faulkner Award for The Old Forest; and the Pulitzer Prize, the Ritz Hemingway Award, and Italy’s Chianti Ruffino Antico Fattore International Literary Prize for Summons to Memphis. He received the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in Short Fiction and a Governor’s Award for the Arts from the Commonwealth of Virginia and was elected a Fellow of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. He concluded a long teaching career as the Henry Hoynes Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Virginia and lived in Charlottesville with his wife, the poet Eleanor Ross Taylor, from 1967 until his death.
Photo provided by Ross Taylor