Cover image of the Summer 2010 edition of the University of Nebraska's "Prairie Schooner" publicationView larger
The Prairie Schooner, founded in 1926 at the University of Nebraska by Lowry C. Wimberly, is widely recognized as one of the premier literary magazines in the world. It has been cited by the Washington Post for its "fabulous fiction" and by the Dictionary of Literary Biography and Writer's Digest as one of the top ten magazines publishing poetry.
The Prairie Schooner's prose and poetry are regularly reprinted in collections such as Best American Poetry, Best American Short Stories, Best American Essays, the O. Henry anthology of short stories, and the Pushcart Prize anthology. The Schooner has also won recognition for special issues devoted to specific national and ethnic literatures.
A consistent goal of the Prairie Schooner editorial staff has been to publish works of excellent young writers. That group has included, among many others, Joyce Carol Oates, Eudora Welty, Octavio Paz, Truman Capote, Cynthia Ozick, Tennessee Williams, Raymond Carver, and Richard Russo. Willa Cather, Mari Sandoz, Loren Eiseley, Wright Morris, Ron Hansen, Ted Kooser, and Kathleen West are among the prestigious Nebraska contributors.
The Prairie Schooner is supported by the University of Nebraska through the Department of English and the University of Nebraska Press. Its distinguished editors have been Wimberly (1926–56), Karl Shapiro (1956–63), Bernice Slote (1963–80), Hugh Luke (1980– 87), and Hilda Raz (1987–present).
Perhaps the best summation of the Schooner's history appeared in the Literary Magazine Review several years ago: "[The] Prairie Schooner rolls along, avoiding the quagmires of fads and schisms, steadfastly defining the American idiom."
Lee T. Lemon University of Nebraska-Lincoln