My name is Sid Webb.
I am the son of James. Recently I began scanning Dad’s published stories and unpublished manuscripts. It has been years since I read these stories, so long ago in fact that it is fresh and new to me.
Scanning his body of work is time consuming but it is a labor of love. So far I have found 70 published stories, many of which Dad had bound in scrapbooks.
Dad wrote one novel, Riley Dawson, that was published by Dodd Mead in 1950. It was about a boy who lived in the backwoods of Kentucky around 1880. For many people, reading Riley Dawson was tough because of the dialect and colloquialisms. Dialect is always a challenge for writers to get the right balance, and it was for Dad. There should be just enough suggestion on the written page for the reader’s inner ear to identify it, but not enough to slow the pace of reading.
Dad wrote another novel, Tommy, about a boy who lived in a small Kentucky town around 1913. Dad had mastered the art of dialect by then. Unfortunately it was too late. He died in 1955 before he found a publisher for the book. The Tommy manuscript languished on the closet shelf for 50 years before I dusted it off and got it published. It is a good read.
Dad wore out a couple of Underwood typewriters and loads of ribbons with his two-fingered typing. When he wasn’t writing he was reading. And in those books he read he traveled to many places and lived in different times. Although he wrote many a wild west drama he never crossed the Mississippi. His readers never guessed.
If I have breached a copyright on this site, please tell me and I will immediately remove the copyright material.