A Calendar of the Letters of Willa Cather

23 letters found

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To Ferris GreensletNov. 17, 1922, from New YorkHarvard 

Pleased with the sales report, but the copy of Alexander's Bridge hasn't arrived. Did he see her article on Mrs. Fields? ["148 Charles Street," a review of De Wolfe Howe's Memories of a Hostess, 1922, drawn mainly from Annie Adams Fields's diaries] Is going to Red Cloud next week to spend Thanksgiving and Christmas.   Willa Cather   [Stout #643]

To Stephen TennantMar. 28, [1927], from no. 5 Bank Street, New YorkYongue 

Anne Douglas Sedgwick has sent a note written by him praising My Mortal Enemy. Appreciates his favor. Most of her books made out of old memories from which the extraneous has dropped away. Now reading proofs of a book that gave her joy to write, Death Comes for the Archbishop.   Willa Cather   [Stout #883]

To Marion CanbyMay 29, [prob. 1928], from the Grosvenor Hotel, New YorkBeinecke 

Should never look for a subject but let the subject find her. Imagination merely sets free one's memories and feelings. Going north soon. Enjoyed seeing her.   Willa Cather   [Stout #935]

To Read BainJan. 14, 1931Michigan 

Out of many fan letters, it is easy to recognize one of substance. Yes, it is disadvantageous for a writer to be female. Suggests Virginia Woolf for an accurate statement. Often returns to early memories, because young children are virtually without sex. Interesting to hear which books he prefers, but believes A Lost Lady is better than either of the two he named.   Willa Cather   [Stout #1033]

To Mabel Dodge LuhanJan. 17, [1931?], from New YorkBeinecke 

Very much admires Lorenzo in Taos [published in 1932; she must have seen manuscript or proof]. It equals the Buffalo section of Intimate Memories. Whether one agrees or not with the views of the people, they are well presented. Lawrence himself is caught better than anyone else has ever caught him, down to his giggle, or snicker. Country itself has its own life, and Tony's car takes on real significance. Edith away for a week, but read it, too. Is leaving for California before long. Mother about the same. Hopes to go to Mexico City before long.   Willa Cather   [Stout #1036]

To Mariel Gere,  Monday [Dec. 28, 1931] , from Red Cloud, Nebr.WCPM 

Thanks for pudding she sent for Christmas. Saving it for New Year's, when Douglass will be there. Cherishes many beautiful memories of good cheer in the Geres' home. Has had a Christmas both joyful and sad.   Willa   [Stout #1092]

To Thomas MasarykSept. 23, [prob. 1932], from Jaffrey, N.H.Berkeley 

Hopes he has received a copy of her new book [Obscure Destinies, pub. August 1932] and agrees that "Old Mrs. Harris" rings true, more true than the book about Quebec last year. Books drawn from early memories are always truest. Even so, likes to try different things. Being true is her greatest wish. No, is not becoming a Catholic, though greatly admires Catholic missionaries. Enclosing her letter to Gov. Cross ["On Shadows on the Rock," Saturday Review of Literature, Oct. 17, 1931].   Willa Cather   [Stout #1123]

To Ferris Greenslet,  Sunday [c. Nov. 24, 1940] Harvard 

Must scrawl a letter in spite of sprained right thumb because secretary out of town. Very much appreciated his and Mrs. Greenslet's letter. Many memories of Virginia went into the book. Wrote a great deal more, simply for the pleasure of recalling life there, but cut out all that didn't serve the plan for the book. Nancy was real, and her mother really a servant in the family. Books about slavery usually exaggerate one way or the other. Own family found its superficial aspects pleasant and didn't think much about what lay beneath. Material discarded from the book weighed six pounds. P.S.: Yes, may place the note on names [at end of Sapphira] where Knopf placed the note on design in the first edition, which will probably shift for the second. How important a thumb is!  W. S. C.   [Stout #1506]

To Viola Roseboro'Nov. 28, 1940UVa 

Greatly appreciated her letter about the book. Writing it allowed recovery of early memories and escape from painful events. Glad it rings true to someone born a southerner.   Willa Cather   [Stout #1509]

To Carrie Miner SherwoodMar. 22, 1941WCPM 

Keeps thinking about her and wishes she could write a real letter, by hand. Was saddened by Mary's telegram telling of Walter's [Carrie's husband's] death, but had heard how ill he was. Also heard how beautifully she was taking care of him. Remembers first seeing his picture in her watch case when she was going away to school at St. Mary's. Has spent a great deal of time alone this winter enjoying precious memories like that. Sees very few people besides Mary Virginia and Yehudi Menuhin and wife. Will write again soon. Hand is improving since going to Dr. Ober, a surgeon from Boston. Enjoys remembering evenings she spent with Carrie and Walter ten years ago, when they both gave her good advice.   Willie   [Stout #1534]