Communications associate professor Anthony Hatcher published an essay about James Ross, author of a critically acclaimed but little known 1940 crime noir novel called "They Don't Dance Much," on The Oxford American magazine website.
Billed as “The Southern Magazine of Good Writing,” The Oxford American began publication in 1992. It has featured writing by Roy Blount Jr., Allan Gurganus, Kevin Brockmeier and many others. Hatcher’s essay on James Ross appears online in conjunction with the August 2012 “New South Journalism” issue.
Hatcher has been researching the life of James Ross, who died in Greensboro, N.C., in 1990, for more than than two years. Ross attended Elon College in the 1930s and became a reporter for the Greensboro Daily News in the 1950s. He published only the one novel and eight short stories. Unable to earn a living as a novelist and short story writer, Ross turned to full-time journalism, first at the Savannah News and later at the Greensboro paper, now called The News & Record.
Ross was the eldest sibling of a family of writers originally from near Norwood, N.C. His brother, Fred, died in 1992. His sister, poet Eleanor Ross Taylor, widow of novelist Peter Taylor, died in December 2011. Jean Ross Justice, widow of poet Donald Justice, lives in Iowa and is still writing short stories and essays.
Hatcher’s profile of James Ross can be accessed online at http://www.oxfordamerican.org/articles/issues/latest_issue/.