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#0934: Willa Cather to Mary Hunter Austin, May 9, 1928

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The Grosvenor3
35 Fifth Avenue
New York
My dear Mrs. Austin1:

I wish the suggestion4 made by Mr. Greenslet5 and Dr. Leech6 had come a year ago, when I had a good deal more time and energy than I have now. Just because I never write biographical or critical studies, editors bother me to death trying to make me do them. They simply want them because I resist their persuasions. Greenslet7 has just been trying to crowd on me a biography of Amy Lowell8 - I would be as likely to undertake a history of the Chinese Empire! I wouldn't do it for the whole amount of the Lowell Estate,- simply because that sort of writing is an agony to me. I need very little money, and my life and liberty are very precious to me.

One of the pleasures of having an absolute rule is that once or twice in a lifetime one may break it, and if things were at all well with me, I would be tempted to break it on your account,; but this has been a very bad winter for me, and I'm not going to do any writing at all for at least six months. My father9 died in March, and I have just come back to New York2 after several weeks at the Mayo Clinic10. This is the first time in my life that I have ever felt absolutely tired, through and through, and I am simply going to rest for a while. I don't know where yet, but I may go on to my mother11, who is in California12 with my brother13. For this year, my family concerns, father's death and mother's consequent breakdown have simply wiped out everything else. I know you will understand that I speak to you with a frank and open heart. Sometimes the difficulties of life are just too much for one, and then it is best to keep away from the desk.

Faithfully yours, Willa Cather
Mrs. Mary Austin1, Santa Fe14, New Mexico. MADISON SQ STA. 5 N.Y.2 MAY 11 1928 730 PM The Grosvenor 35 FIFTH AVENUE New York2