January 4th, 1907, a brand new literary magazine, El Cuento Semanal, published its first issue in Madrid. This weekly magazine allowed famous contemporary authors or promising new authors to contribute their unpublished short stories to the magazine. This article aims at analyzing its success and assessing its value.
A brief review is given on the life of Eduardo Zamacois (1873-1971), the founder of El Cuento Semanal. His biography shows that his career as a novelist and journalist of several periodicals led him to foundation of El Cuento Semanal. His strategies promoting the authors` writing and the high-quality details which attract the readers were sufficient to achieve a remarkable success of this weekly magazine. As a result, it had a huge influence on the Spanish publishing market during the next 30 years, setting the trend of founding short stories collection. However, after a 5-year journey, El Cuento Semanal goes through the ownership dispute, the irony which puts the founder and his magazine in competition, the management crisis, and, at last, the ultimate discontinuance in 1912.
Despite its short existence, it is obvious that El Cuento Semanal played a significant role in the appearance of short stories as a new literary genre in Spain. Furthermore, this first collection of short stories as a periodical has entirely changed the situation of the Spanish publishing industry.