Condition: Paper a little browned; in fine condition. De Forest manuscript material is very uncommon in the trade.
Book ID: 19906
DescriptionTwo pages on the letterhead of the Hotel Garde, “Opposite Union Depot.” Approximately 300 words.
CommentsA fine and interesting letter from one of the masters of American realistic fiction, inquiring about a story in the Bulletin of the Society of American Authors which asserted that “Publishing wholly or in considerable part at the author's cost has become quite commonplace with at least two leading Boston publishing firms.” De Forest asks “Can you oblige me with their names? The secret of this question is that I want to publish a volume (or two) of verse. No profits expected; on the contrary, losses; but I am willing to foot them.” De Forest goes on to criticize publishing firms for their “vainglory” and comments that he had solicited a Boston firm to publish his book with no risk and they declined, citing that they want complete control and, besides, “poetry does not sell.” De Forest concludes “Few authors can pay (like Herbert Spencer and Ruskin) for publishing their own works. But when they can do it, why won't the publishers let them . . .” De Forest later that year published his two books of verse with Tuttle, Morehouse and Taylor of New Haven. See BAL 4627 & 4628.