How William Shawn Built The New Yorker Into A Literary Institution

“The sheer proliferation of advertising demanded that Shawn scramble in search of more and more editorial matter. This, he found, had an inevitable drag on quality. There is, in this world, after all, only so much talent at a given time—only so much good writing. At a certain point, he found it necessary to limit the pages in a weekly issue to 248—as fat as a phone book in some towns. In his tenure as editor, Shawn made innumerable hires, tried out countless freelancers, and ran long, multipart series—some forgettable, some central to the literary and journalistic history of mid-century America.”