Any attempt to index the Girl's Own Paper by author faces a number of challenges. In particular, the GOP was not entirely consistent in its spelling, or in the form used for the names of its authors. Is "Sybil Haddock" the same person as "Sibyl Haddock"? Is "Mrs George de Horne Vaizey" the same person as "Jessie de Horne Vaizey"? There were a number of authors who wrote for the GOP over periods of ten years or more; it is not surprising that they changed their names by marriage, or even by ennoblement, while still faithfully writing for the GOP! Promotion is also a possibility; "Frederick Langbridge", writing in an Extra to Volume 17, becomes "Rev Frederick Langbridge, M.A." in Volume 19, and by Volume 40 is credited as "Canon Langbridge", while still keeping his light and cheerful style.After much thought, it was decided to leave each author's name exactly as given in that particular reference in the GOP. However, where it has been possible to confirm the common identity of differently credited authors, those credits have been cross-referenced in the Author Index, and their stories and articles can be viewed together.
It seems that in the early 1880s, authors – particularly lady authors – were often unwilling to give their names. Anonymous contributions are therefore common in Volumes 1 and 2; thereafter, the proportion falls sharply. It was also common for an author to hide behind her own previous publications; stories are said to be "By the Author of Wrapped in the Robes of Mercy", or "By the Author of Wild Kathleen". No attempt has been made to identify these reluctant performers; the information is given as printed in the GOP, except that some of the longer lists of previous works have been necessarily curtailed.
The Author Index is a mine of information for completists. Some GOP authors are unknown outside its pages; others are famous. Noel Streatfeild wrote for the GOP; so did Rosa Nouchette Carey, Angela Brazil, L.M. Montgomery, Richmal Crompton, Baroness Orczy, and many others. It would be interesting to know the part played by the editorial policies of the GOP in the development of many of these famous writers.
To view all the stories and articles contributed by the author to the Girl's Own Paper, click on the author name.