River of Words
James Still's Literary Legacy

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River of Words: James Still's Literary Legacy (2007)  177 ppg.  $20.00.
ISBN 978-1-893239-43-2

River of Words: James Stillís Literary Legacy is published in an effort to contribute to scholarship in the field of Appalachian literature, and in tribute to James Still and his contributions to the literature of the world.
"Chapter one of this study examines the James Still persona. To those familiar with his work, Still is a literary figure of mythic proportions. Almost every critical piece written about Still mentions that he spent half a century living in an ancient log house in a remote hollow on Wolfpen Creek in eastern Kentucky. As a result, Still the man often overshadows Still the writer, and the romantic Still persona, instead of the writing, becomes the focus. Thus, a close analysis of the creation of the James Still persona might help to shed light on the man behind the legend and the reception of his works.

"Chapters two through five offer an analysis of Stillís writing in the genres of novel, short story, poetry, childrenís literature, and folklore. These chapters seek to not only describe Stillís work, but to examine parallels, similarities, and connections between all genres of his writing.

"The final chapter of this study examines James Stillís place among his contemporaries and attempts to address the question of why he has been largely ignored by scholars of southern literature. From this point, a detailed analysis of James Stillís lasting influence on contemporary Appalachian writers searches for links between Stillís work and the work of these younger generations of authors." 
                                        --- Ted Olson