Madalynne Reuter, a fiction writer and former news editor of Publishers Weekly, died May 3 in Manhattan at age 90. Reuter joined Publishers Weekly in 1975 as an associate editor in the news department. It was called The Week at that time. She became editor of the section the following year and retired in 1992.
Born in Santa Ana, California, in 1921, Reuter was the daughter of Herman Reuter, an editor and reporter at the Santa Ana Register, Hollywood Citizen-News, and an art critic for the L.A. Times. She graduated from UCLA sometime in the late 1930’s and immediately moved east to Newark, N.J., and began working for the War Department during WWII. She moved to Manhattan and began working as an editor for women’s magazines, editing fiction and other articles, in addition to writing and publishing her own short fiction in many of the most highly regarded magazines of the day. In 1953 Reuter married Lawrence Kurtz in New York City; the couple had one child, John Kurtz, who survives his mother. The marriage ended in divorce in 1975.
During the 1960’s Reuter published short stories in McCall’s, The Saturday Evening Post and Good Housekeeping, in addition to many other publications. Her short story “Waxing Roth” was awarded an O. Henry prize in 1966 and is included in the hardcover collection, Prize Stories 1967 O. Henry Awards, edited by William Abrahams and published by Doubleday in 1967.
Reuter was described by John Baker, former longtime editor-in-chief of Publishers Weekly, as “calm, cool and sophisticated; aristocratic and always under control.”