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#0626: Willa Cather to Wilbur Cross, October 11, 1922

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NUMBER FIVE BANK STREET3 Mr. Wilbur Cross1, The Yale Review4, Yale Station, New Haven5, Conn.
My dear Mr. Cross:

Thank you6 for the copy of your October number with the kind reference7 to me8 in it.

I hope you got on well with "One of Ours"9. It seems to make warm friends and equally warm enemies. I am not so pleased with the controversy about it as my publisher10, for business reasons, is. It is unfortunate when an imaginative work becomes a subject of heated argument - it somehow destroys the perspective and makes the part of the narrative which is the subject of argument lose its proper proportion, for the time at least.

I have been wondering whether you might like an article made up of my recollections of Mrs. James T. Fields11 and her friends, apropos of Mr. Howe12's new book13. His extract from her diary recalled to me so many things that she told me about those same incidents. But when I first read the book I spoke to Mr. Howe about it enthusiastically, by telephone, and suggested that I might do something about it14 for Mr. Canby15. He at once wrote Mr. Canby and Mr. Canby wrote me. I am afraid he is expecting it.

I believe you and he are old friends and I don't see how I could play one of you off against the other, even had I a taste for strategy - which I haven't. However, when I come to write it, if it seems very much more suitable for you than for the Literary Review16, and you want it, perhaps Mr. Canby could be persuaded17.

The article18 about which Miss McAfee19 and I talked last year seems rather far away just now. I am afraid it would take a good deal of effort to pull it together and I have not much time as I want very much to finish a new novelette20 before I go abroad this winter.

Very cordially yours, Willa Sibert Cather