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personal reasons, as a man would select any queer mental bias which makes him suspect other intimate business partner. A publisher some publisher. Chance generally determines has no right-in the high and proper concep- which one. A few years ago, when Mr. tion of his calling—to accept any book in James M. Barrie was in this country, he which he lacks confidence. He must believe created a laugh at the Aldine Club in New in its character, its mission, its quality. If York—which is the haunt of the publishers he have no enthusiasm for it, it becomes in —by beginning an
-by beginning an after-dinner speech : his hands a mere piece of merchandise, and “Now Barabbas was a publisher—" he sells it with no keener personal interest Few authors are still fewer used to bethan he would sell pig-iron. The fact that good business men or women. As a rule glorifies publishing, as the born publisher they work alone. They know little of the practices it, is this—that his work becomes, practical questions of trade. They know in a peculiarly intimate way, linked with the little of the cost of conducting a large busiauthor's. It is the most intimate possible ness, full of detail, and sometimes full of coöperation and partnership. An author, who peril. It is the clash between a theoretical engages a publisher in whose enthusiasm, view of business and a practical experience sincerity and personal interest he does not that has generally caused suspicion, when it profoundly believe, makes a grave mistake. existed. The following is a true incident, It is a personal relation, which is much more which is typical : than a mere business relation; and the great One writer who was trying to demonstrate publishers and the great authors have always the infallibility of advertising as a multiplier so regarded it.
of editions, succeeded in getting the pubBut the careless publisher and the fidgety, lisher to place a $160 advertisement of the suspicious author yet amuse the public and, book in a single periodical. no doubt, cause each other much worry. For “You think that that will bring up the instance, the other day I noticed a successful sales?" asked the publisher. book lying on the counter in a large book-shop. “I am sure of it.”
“ What a hit that book has made !" I said “Would you like to place that advertising to the salesman.
yourself ?" “Yes, but I don't envy the publisher.” “Oh, no! I think you ought to do it.” “Why not ?"
It was done. After a few weeks the “Because the author comes in here about publisher exhibited the returns. They were four times a week to ask how many copies we $3; no more. have sold. He evidently thinks his publisher “Well," said the author, “I ought not to is too slow, and he probably makes himself have tried to tell you where to advertise. disagreeable."
That is your business and you should have One writer, who has written many books, attended to it better.” has told how she was defrauded—to the best It is not the new writer nor the one who is of her apparently sincere belief-of such still struggling for recognition that is the healthy sums as $5,000, $10,000, and so on. most unpleasant in his estimate of the pubThe publisher whom she accused of having lisher. It is the man who has just tasted the $5,000, waxed rich on his ill-gotten gains, success. The writer who has had one success and she finally read in the newspapers that is in a fair way to have his head turned. he had invested in land. Upon a portion of With his first book perhaps he hunted a this land he set out five thousand fruit trees publisher. Now the publishers hunt him. at a cost of a dollar a tree. The inference They bid for his work. His royalty doubles, was too plain. The author could not help perhaps, and nothing but that implacable regarding that peach orchard as rightfully “forty-and-ten-off to the trade” keeps him hers. When it failed, there was an obvious from demanding fifty per cent, of the retail conclusion. Providence had dispensed justice. price. When he finds that other men, who
But this same woman spoke with enthu- have written a dozen successful books, get siasm of her present publishers. They are only ten per cent. —no matter; he thinks "reputable." That is the amusing feature of that it is his duty to lead the way to liberty
Such an author, as a rule, be- by asking fifteen per cent. He does not get lieves in his own publishers, but there is a it, and he soon learns better.
It seems next to impossible to make the not market their work—in America, at least new author realize that if he gets ten per -through literary agents. In England the cent. royalty on the retail price of, say, a $1.50 most successful writers sell their books novel, he is getting twenty per cent. of what through middlemen. One firm, Messrs. A. P. the publisher sells the book for.
Watt & Son, which handles Mr. Kipling's But the pleasant relations that as a rule work as well as that of several other leading exist in the publishing world in this country English novelists, draws thousands of dollars have not come in England. The old feud annually as commissions on American sales has become open war there, with Sir Walter alone. These commissions come out of the Besant as a more or less comic-opera general pocket of the author, who pays the literary who wades through seas of ink and counts a agent ten per cent. of all receipts. A good day lost when he does not stab at least three agent is, however, supposed to pay for himor four publishers. No matter how dull other self by attending to all business details. corners of Britain may be, there is always American writers do not seem to feel the “something going in the literary line."
need of this middleman. The author and Sir Walter has no imitator in this country. the publisher here understand each other There is plenty "going in the literary line," better than they ever did and are putting but there is no fighting worth speaking about. money into each other's pockets faster than A proof of the pleasanter relation between they would have dreamed of a generation author and publisher on this side of the water ago. Perhaps the full pocket makes the is the insignificance of American literary full heart. At any rate the two crafts now agencies. The leading American writers do
dwell in peace.
THE AUTHOR AS
AS THE PRINTER SEES
J. HORACE MCFARLAND
F I may speak of the author as a com better, perhaps; he will at least know how to
posite of many individuals, he is usually “mark up” proofs.
a most amiable person, vastly well-in As the printer, I have usually begun my formed upon the subject of his book, but by work towards the making of a book with a no means equally well-informed about the personal note to the author, telling him of my mechanics of printing. The printer may be anxiety to have it well done, and delicately but mildly interested in the book, but the hinting that the proof-reader may possibly doing of it into metal, paper and cloth is his make suggestions from time to time—only daily bread. He is, therefore, likely to be suggestions, to be disregarded promptly if not more disturbed by the ignorance of the author agreeable or to the point. This beginning about type and proofs than impressed by his has usually been courteously responded to, profound knowledge upon the subject of his and among the pleasant things which comebook.
occasionally—to the master-printer, none are When the colleges and universities come to more agreeable than the notes of appreciation realize the importance of the graphic arts by from the authors whom he has served. Of which their work is preserved, they may give course this presumes a real interest on the instruction, at least superficially, about book- part of the printer in the book which is passing making. In that happy generation the author through the press, on its way to fame—or poswill be less of a trial to the printer, and less sibly to the ten-cent counter of the department of an expense to the publisher. He will write store! And if the master-printer cannot have
this interest, and cannot establish this com this happens, the printer asks the author fortable and sympathetic relation with the either to "cut” the line, or to add some author, he has missed his calling, and should words to it. Also, a chapter may not end give place to a better man. The true typo- with but two or three lines at the top of a graphic craftsman believes with that prince of page; it must be cut down to not quite fill bookmakers, Mr. Theodore L. DeVinne, that the last page, or “padded” to fill at least “ the time will come when the making of a one-fourth of the short page. If the printer good book, from the mechanical point of view, reluctantly cuts or adds, he is religiously carewill be regarded as an achievement quite as ful not to alter the sense in the least. worthy as the painting of a good picture or One author, a man of deep learning and the building of a good house."
wide general cultivation as well, is an ideal But the actual author is not a composite — editor. He can add or cut to perfection, and he is an individual, and usually very much of he knows just where to do it so as to cause an individual. He
may have vague ideas the least typographic inconvenience or exabout the mechanical work of bookmaking, pense. After he has done this work, too, the and, alas ! he is sometimes a man who appre- result is clean, terse English, the admiration ciates the true import of words and phrases of his readers. But this dear man's “copy !" only when they stand before him in cold type. It is a collection of scraps of all sizes on all I have lately been making a theological book sorts of paper. One would think manuscript for a doctor of divinity. His manuscript was paper was scarce; yet I have sent reams and beautiful in chirography and exact in expres reams of suitable stationery to him. No one sion. At least it seemed so to us of the knows what becomes of it, for the stream of print-shop; but I fear we were mistaken about scraps continues. I have had “
copy” from its exactness, for when the doctor got his first, that man on the back of a tailor's bill—unreor “galley” proofs, he “sailed into” his own ceipted—and one chapter of a recent book theology as if it were the contention of a included odds and ends of paper the other rival!
When the page-proof followed, he side of which showed that they came from ten struck still another line of thought, to the of the United States and two countries of consternation of us all ; but his chief flow of elo- Europe. Among the scraps was a friend's quence presented itself in the form of a volum- wedding announcement; but the wedding inous “insert” in the middle of a long chapter, date was past, at least, as I was gravely inafter he had received the “foundry” proofs, formed upon a gentle remonstrance to the which were sent to him only for reference and author. His assistant tells me that the indexing, and as an evidence that the pages had only safety for the wedding certificate of our been cast into the relatively unalterable electro- friend is that it is framed, and therefore intype. When I gently remonstrated with him, convenient to write upon. showing him that this last homiletic thunder But much may be forgiven to such an bolt would cause the destruction of about thirty author, who is a continual joy to the printer. cast pages, and a resetting of that much of the What matter the backs of envelopes or the book, at an expense which I was quite sure the scraps of foreign letters when the “copy” publisher would expect him to pay, he reluc- they are covered with is perfect in diction, tantly agreed to my suggestion that he write absolutely legible, and ready for the composidown his interpolation to exactly two pages, tor without revision ? And then the little priwhich could be inserted without great expense. vate notes which come dropping in with the
Some excellent authors cannot “cut copy and proofs from this busy man—they bub“fill” to meet the usual typographic needs. ble with fun; and one wonders how he has had I remember one good brother who said that time to acquire so much delightfully expressive he couldn't, and that I shouldn't, but I slang, or to devise the wonderful phonetic cautiously did; and the fun of it was that he spelling which adorns only these private comwas unable to find the places where, to make munications. harmonious work, a word or two had been cut Sometimes the “copy” is bad—the poor out or added. He was entirely happy ; so printer calls it “blind.” Good handwriting is was I. It should be explained as one canon greatly to be preferred, however scrappy the of good bookmaking, that a paragraph must paper, to poor typewriting. One author used not end on the first line of a page. Where a pale pink eight-dollar typewriter, and did his
numerous interlineations with a still paler with a complaint that the compositors were lead-pencil. After the book was out, I purposely "spreading out” his book, the pages respectfully suggested the use of an axe on of which certainly did look more "open" than the typewriter. I am afraid the author did the daily newspaper he was comparing with. not appreciate the facetiousness of my re He was dealt with gently, but firmly. Soon mark, for he wrote me that it was indecent.” the copy gave out, and then began a most I have wondered since if he may not have harrowing experience. The author lived in my thought that my sanguinary suggestion was home city, and twice a day (by his wish) the meant for the operator and not for the office boy called on him for copy. We got machine.
enough to set up two or three pages a day, The only other difficulty that I ever had and so finally we finished the book, which with an author came about through a re surely added much to our "experience acvision—which was a task that lay beyond my count,” as every master printer sadly calls it. work as a printer—of a book in a series. The But the last reincarnation of the delibereditor requested me, during his absence ating author appeared to us in the shape of a in Europe, to condense or cut down the medical writer, whose book on a gruesome work. The growing indignation of the author subject is dragging its way slowly through the whose redundancy I was pruning was most press. The doctor hung on to his first lot of amusingly manifested in the way he ad- proofs over three weeks, and plaintively comGressed successive communications. At first
At first plained—he is the soul of courtesy—that we “Dear Mr. McFarland,” I was soon "Mr. were hurrying him unduly, when we suggested McFarland,” then “McFarland,” and then a little expedition. When he was half through plain “Sir;" and the last postal card simply the checking up of the topical index, he alstarted in with an expressive dash! We have most “struck," saying that, as he had given made it all up since, over a second edition. such careful attention to the proofs, he ought
An interesting case was that of the author now to be relieved from looking up his own of a widely-used mental arithmetic. He references. As he is now becoming anxious visited me, and I found that his knowledge as to what the reviewers will say of his book, was limited to mathematics. He juggled
He juggled he may eventually come to the point of perjoyfully with the figures, but struggled pain- mitting us to complete it. fully with the words which connected them. A veteran editor a man of wide experiWe looked out for the English, and he was ence in journalism and politics—sent a book grateful. He was followed by the author of to my office on one of the great natural proa spelling-book, whose copy was beautifully ducts of the Keystone State. Being an editor, prepared, and with whom we had a pleasant he could see no use whatever in writing copy correspondence. One day he came, unan days ahead of its use, and so this book , too, nounced, and chose to preserve an incognito followed the pen very closely. He was dewhile he questioned several of the office lighted to find a corner in the proof-room people—in my absence—about things in gen where he might work, and whence his awful eral and spelling-books in particular. He manuscript went quickly to the compositors. tried hard to draw out some expression as to Yes, his script was awful, for he frequently his speller, but without success, fortunately. balked at it himself when called upon by a
Then there is the man who is impressed with despairing compositor. He reminded me of the deep importance of the work with which an experience of my own type-setting days, he is about to favor the world, and who is apt when an editorial writer on an inland city to linger long over the proofs. A historian daily was confidently believed to originate new recently gave us an experience with this form and wonderful alphabetic signs every day. of author. We were persuaded to begin putting Once I took him a particularly “blind" page his history in type when only a part of the of his own, and, after puzzling profanely copy was ready. Nearly two weeks' ponder- over an undecipherable phrase, he ejaculated ing over each batch of galley proofs did not “ Damn the man who writes like that !” while satisfy him, but it infuriated the composing he rewrote his own phrase. room foreman, whose business it is to keep his The author, as the printer knows him : may type moving. After the page proofs were his pen never tire, his good humor continue sent out, the historian-author came to me his practicability increase!
A SHORT GUIDE TO NEW BOOKS
MR. BOOKER T. WASHINGTON's autobiography natives and allowed the freedom of the town, he is one of those few books that are singled out as had an opportunity to become acquainted with Up From
remarkable. It is the story of an many sides of the Filipino character. As a firstSlavery. extraordinary life, simple, yet elo hand source of information on just the things which quently told, and there is probably not another all Americans want to know about now this book American who could write an autobiography of has very great value. Naturally the seamy side more direct human interest. Beginning in a is that most in evidence. Prison sanitation in slave cabin it leads on by the ambitious energy Luzon is certainly primitive; captured prisoners of a boy, and the self-sacrifice of a mother and did not suffer from overfeeding; they endured brother to the then new Hampton school in Vir severe hardships; more than once after the ginia ; and with sheer force and character of the American victories their lives were in danger. man it culminates in the making of one of the Yet, when the necessary allowances are made, great educational institutions of the land. The the showing is decidedly favorable to the Filipinos, boy who twenty-five years ago slept under a side more so on the whole than to the Otis adwalk in Richmond, is now the head of the Tus- ministration, if one reads between the lines. kegee Institute with its property and endow (Scribner's. $1.50.) ment of nearly a half-million dollars. But, greater
These short lives of famous Americans seem than that stands the fact that he has undoubtedly
to have been prepared with at least a partial eye done more than any other man towards solving the “Negro problem," and he has given the
Riverside to use for school reading. On the
Biographical whole, they are well done, though the greatest human document on the subject ever
liam Penn, written. (Doubleday, Page. $1.50.)
limitation of equal length involves
ferson, Peter very unequal treatment; to put JefWe are glad to be able definitely to recom
Cooper. ferson into the same space with Penn mend “ The Octopus ” as being a book of or Peter Cooper implies a readjustment of the
special interest and merit. The author, scale. The Octopus.
MR. FRANK NORRIS, has taken for The life of Penn is by DR. GEORGE HODGES, his motive a wheat crisis, which occurred in the Dean of the Cambridge (Mass.), Theological San Joaquin Valley, California, some twenty Seminary. Penn can by no stretch be made out years since, and around it has woven a story an American ; Dr. Hodges does not exaggerate treating of "the People" and "the Trust" from the importance of what was only an incident in a very unusual and convincing point of view. Penn's life, but sets forth the essential facts in Combined with this thoroughly practical aspect the life of the seventeenth century English Quaker is an extraordinary blending of realism, mysticism, and gentleman. idealism, pessimism, and optimism and direct MR. HENRY Childs Merwin's life of Jefferson ness—a cosmopolitan disregard for predominance leaves something to be desired. It follows conof tone—and an equal, forceful style of construc ventional lines, and has in general the qualities tion. None of the sunlight or shadow of Cali- of style and treatment to be feared in so brief a fornian life and atmosphere is lost. If a note of summary. It is more of a political than a perimmaturity sounds at times, it is more pleasing sonal biography; we fail to get acquainted with by way of contrast than otherwise, and does not
the man. detract from a book which leaves one with care MR. ROSSITER W. RAYMOND writes of Peter ful and distinct impressions and thoughts of a Cooper from personal knowledge. This life is strong book, strongly written. (Doubleday, excellent. The philanthropist is not permitted Page. $1.50.)
to conceal from us the typical American, with Mr. ALBERT SONNICHSEN was arrested by the
his many-sided activities, from inventing a loco
motive to running for the Presidency. Filipino insurgents while trying to visit their Ten Months
Each of these biographies has for its frontiscapital, Malolos, about a week before a Captive the outbreak of hostilities between
piece an excellent picture of its subject. (HoughAmong Filipinos. the Americans and the natives. The
ton, Mifflin. 75 cents.) recital of his subsequent experiences has a Mr. William HANNIBAL THOMAS, himself a unique interest. Carried from place to place, mulatto, writes most discouragingly of the capanow confined in crowded and filthy prison-pens, The American bilities and prospects of the Negro. now stretched on a hospital cot among dying Negro. He concludes that his race is sunk in Spanish prisoners, now befriended by kind-hearted almost hopeless degradation. Economically and