Pam Houston Analysis

Other Literary Forms

(Literary Essentials: Short Fiction Masterpieces)

Pam Houston began her writing career contributing nonfiction and short stories to numerous popular and literary periodicals such as Vogue, The New York Times, Quarterly West, and The Gettysburg Review. Some of these stories later appeared in her 1992 Cowboys Are My Weakness and her 1998 Waltzing the Cat. She is also the editor of Women on Hunting: Essays, Fiction, and Poetry (1995) and has had her stories selected for many works such as The Best American Short Stories 1990 and Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards in 1999. Her autobiography, A Little More About Me, was published in 1999.


(Literary Essentials: Short Fiction Masterpieces)

Pam Houston’s collection of short stories, Cowboys Are My Weakness: Stories, was a New York Times Notable Book in 1992 and won the 1993 Western States Book Award. In 1999, Waltzing the Cat won the first Willa Literary Awards (named after Pulitzer Prize-winning author Willa Cather) for best contemporary fiction.


(Literary Essentials: Short Fiction Masterpieces)

Fanselow, Julie. “The Emotional Truth: Writings of Author Pam Houston.” Writer’s Digest 76, no. 10 (October, 1996): 6. Houston’s first collection of stories “Cowboys Are My Weakness” continues to sell well since its publication in 1992. She feels that stories always change in the retelling.

Gilbert, Elizabeth. “Risky Business.” Review of A Little More About Me, by Pam Houston. The New York Times Book Review, September 12, 1999, p. 25. Review of the author’s autobiography which also discusses Houston’s numerous adventures and the path that her autobiographical stories take.

Houlihan, Mary. “Wild World of Words; Her Tales Mix Love, Adventure.” Chicago Sun-Times, October 10, 1999, p. G17. Interview with the author in which she discusses her early family history, mentors, teaching, and future adventures.

Houston, Pam. “On the River with Pam Houston: Adventure, a Cure for Bad-Love Blues.” Interview by Molly O’Neill. The New York Times, July 15, 1992, p. C1. Interviewer goes on a three-day river trip with the author while they discuss Houston’s childhood, men and first book, Cowboys Are My Weakness: Stories.

Houlihan, Mary. “Truth and Dare: Pam Houston’s Greatest Adventure Is Within Herself.” Interview by Lori Tobias. Denver Rocky Mountain News, September 12, 1999, p. 1E. Houston discusses her early childhood and autobiography. Her use of personal experiences in her short stories is also addressed.

Reynolds, Susan Salter. “I Love Lucy: Waltzing the Cat, by Pam Houston.” The Los Angeles Times Book Review, November 15, 1998, 12. Reviews her second book with a special emphasis on the author’s use of personal experience and metaphor as writing strategies.

See, Carolyn. “Running Life’s Rapids.” The Washington Post, October 30, 1998, p. D02. Discusses the issues of concern to Lucy, the main character in Waltzing the Cat, such as men, her parents, and risking her life.