Picked this book up at the Barnes & Noble over on the Sunrise yesterday. It's got what purports to be all of our Howard's fiction in the order that he wrote it. Anyhow, we shall see.

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"A Reminiscence of Dr. Samuel Johnson" was written in November 1917 and published in that month's United Amateur.  It's a prady of Dr. Johnson's writing style - I've never read any Johnson, so I don't know how close Lovecraft gets. Dr. Johnson is one of those guys who was a big deal back in the day, but is not so well-remembered outside of serious literature students today.
"Polaris" was written in May or June of 1918 and first published in the December 1920 Philosopher.  It's the story of a man haunted by dreams of a former life in an ancient city.  It's one of the first of our Howard's stories that I remember reading when I was a little kid. It's also got the first mention of the "Pnakotic manuscripts", which will be one of those things that crops up alot in Lovecraft's stories.  It's also got the first real hint of Lovecraft's racial views, where the faces are all tall, grey-eyed men and the heels are "squat, yellow men".
"Beyond the Wall of Sleep" was written in the spring of 1919, and first published in the October 1919 Pine Cones.  It's the story of a man from the Catskills who's committed to an asylum because he's haunted by weird dream of life on another world. We see here an early example of Lovecraft's tendency to portray hill people as inbred, degenerate rural defectives.
The note in the text describes "Memory" as a "prose-poem", which is not a construction that I have seen before. At any rate, it was published in the June 1919 United Co-operative.  It's only one page long, and is an atmospheric sort-of elegy for a ruined city.

Dr. Johnson is one of those guys who was a big deal back in the day, but is not so well-remembered outside of serious literature students today.

And Blackadder fans.

The two groups overlap to an extent.
My first encounter with Lovecraft was reading "The Dunwich Horror" in a horror anthology when I was about eleven.

I've always wanted to read some Lovecraft, especially since so much of the fiction I like steals from him quite liberally.

 

Y'know, like the "Howard the Duck" movie.

"The Duckwich Horror."
"Old Bugs" was written in the summer or fall of 1919, but not published until 1959, in The Shuttered Room and Other Pieces. It's a short piece of slightly overblown melodrama written to warn a young friend against the dangers of strong drink. As such, it's mildly amusing.
"The Transition of Juan Romero" was written September 16, 1919, but not published until 1944, in Marginalia.  The story concerns two men in the Southwest, encountering something at the bottom of a mine.  It's a little on the vague side, and apparently our Howard wasn't too thrilled with it, himself.
"The White Ship" was written in November 1919, and published in that same month's issue of United Amateur.  Apparently it was written right after Lovecraft had heard a lecture by Lord Dunsany, who was a prominent fantasy writer, and one of Howie's big influences. It concenrs a lighthouse keeper who boards a ship that takes him to fantastic lands.

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