This Novel was first published by Random House in 1941. Stein began work on it in the spring of 1937, shortly after she had completed Everybody’s Autobiography. It took the author years of rewrites and multiple revisions of the text before she was satisfied with the novel. In correspondences with her friend, Thornton Wilder, Stein asked him to collaborate with her on the novel, but he declined the offer. Wilder was an award-winning novelist and playwright, who was also multi-lingual and translated prominent works by European authors, including Jean— Paul Sartre. One dominant theme of the novel is the ‘publicity saint’ — the concept of someone becoming famous for being famous. They do not do or say anything of merit, but become well known and a figure of interest by virtue of being famous; clearly an idea of great amusement to the author.