Toward literary text production


Material Information

Toward literary text production an empirical and third force psychoanalysis of literary mediation between authors and editors
Physical Description:
vii, 192 leaves : ; 29 cm.
Franklin, John Thomas
Publication Date:


bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )


Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of Florida, 1995.
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 186-191).
Statement of Responsibility:
by John Thomas Franklin.
General Note:
General Note:

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
aleph - 002076787
notis - AKR5180
oclc - 34428562
System ID:

Full Text








Copyright 1994


John Thomas Franklin

to ABDs: it can be done


I wish to thank the following persons and institutions:
Graduate School and Dept. of English, U. Florida, particularly Kathy
Dept. of English and Philosophy, Stephen F. Austin State University;
Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, U. of Texas;

the people I interviewed, including those whose transcripts do not

appear in this dissertation;

the members of the dissertation committee, particularly the chair:

Robert de Beaugrande; and,
the people who have helped with the word processing: Margaret,

Patty, Carolyn, Jill and Debbie.



ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ........................................................................... iv

A B ST R A C T ............................................................................... ...................... vii



Literature as an "Empirical" Phenomenon?........................ ............ 1
The Present Project ................................................ ........................ 14


Typical Moves of Expansive Authors.................................................... 31
Discourse Moves Away from Expansiveness......... ........................54
Expansive Solidarity ........................................... .............................. 66
Living with Expansiveness: The Editor's View................................... 72
C on clu sion .......................................................... ................................ 86

SITUATIONS OF HIGHER COLLABORATION ......................... 89

Between Expansiveness and Self-Effacement: Primarily Fitzgerald's
Great Hopes and Great Doubts for The Great Gatsby...................... 89
C on clu sion ............................................................................................. 123

OF COLLABORATION .................................................................. 125

Editors' Strategies for Managing without Appearing To Do So......... 125
Negotiating Book Covers.................................................................... 130
Increasing the Pressure ..................................................................... 137
M ore Drastic Expansions ................................................................... 156
C on clu sion ............................................................................................. 17 1

5 CON CLU SION ..................................................................................... 174

REFEREN CES ................................................................................................ 186

BIOGRAPH ICAL SK ETCH ........................................................................... 192

Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy



John Thomas Franklin

April, 1994

Chairman: Professor Robert de Beaugrande
Major Department: English
Drawing from an empirical analysis of correspondence among Ernest
Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Maxwell Perkins as well as interviews
with contemporary writers and editors, this dissertation identifies lower and
higher degrees of collaboration, determines editorial attempts to insure
collaboration, and explains the psychological motivation for discourse
strategies in terms of Third Force psychology as both authors and editors
attempt to meet their literary needs. Pedagogical applications are implied in
that the student-professor writing relationship is analogous to the author-
editor literary collaboration.


Literature as an "Empirical" Phenomenon?

Since ancient times the study of language has largely been equated
with the study of literature. Scholars were doubtless aware that literature

represented a special area of language rather than the language as a whole;

but they presumably believed literature to represent language at its best and

hence to be the most meritorious domain for study and description. This
view would have been all the more entrenched when the literary text in

question also had a religious quality, as we can see for instance in extensive

study of Sanskrit texts combining literary with sacred matters and

The study of literature as an academic discipline in contrast is a

relatively recent creation. It has its roots in the study of classical languages,

notably Latin and Greek, for which we have to be content with the study of

surviving texts. To the degree that literature was cultivated and its survival

encouraged, it naturally continued to occupy center stage. Other types of
texts such as historical, philosophical or scientific treatises were also studied,

but often from rather literary standpoints, e.g., with a close attention to
"style." Moreover, the academic decorum of ancient times had not yet

promulgated the strict separation between the "literary" and the "scientific"

so forcefully imposed in our own century.

The most direct forerunner of today's "literature programs" was the
trend of reapplying methods for the study of classical to medieval and
modern languages. Again the focus of attention was literary texts, but
several shifts of emphasis can be detected. The fact that medieval texts were
much less well-preserved or that classical Latin texts had been transcribed
compelled the scholars to pay much more attention to the niceties of the
language system itself, such as patterns of sound and grammar. As a result,
a train of study split off from the purely literary into "philology," which
eventually gave us "modern linguistics" (Beaugrande, 1991). The coexistence
between a study of literature and the study of language as systems of sounds
and forms has understandably been a bit uneasy as Beaugrande (1993) has
also noted. Language departments have been typically divided into two
relatively autonomous subdivisions with regrettably small interaction
between them. The literary scholars tend to view the linguists as insensitive
to the finer sides of language, often overlooking the richness, complexity and
ambiguity as eminently presented by poetry. The linguists tend to regard the
literary scholars as somewhat subjective and unsystematic in their treatment
of data, and particularly in their disinterest in clarifying the status of
literature as a brand of language and not just as an aesthetic category or a
stream within the history of culture and ideas. Beaugrande (1993) argues
that the standoff between literary studies and linguistics stems from cogent
motivations in terms of procedures and agendas but is currently in the
process of being resolved. On the one hand, "literary theory" represents the
genuine attempt to come to grips with the status of literature as language.
On the other hand, discourse analysis has greatly increased the sensitivity of
linguists for the complexities of discourse represented among other domains
by literature and poetry.

An important strand within this recent convergence has been an

attempt to situate literature as a phenomenon of human communication.
The "empirical fact" that literature is produced under certain personal and
social conditions has been increasingly highlighted from a range of
perspectives. Whereas traditional studies tended to monumentalizee" the
literary author as a solitary and exceptional being struggling along in a
vitalistic process of inspiration and creativity, we are now more interested in
the concrete factors influencing the day-to-day activities involved in literary
authorship as a category of communication production, involving labor,
collaboration among an army of institutional necessities such as authors,
editors, publishers and so forth. We see this outlook not so much as a
contradiction or defiance of traditional literary concern for the author but as
a complement to it. The public image of authors is an intimate part of the
general construction and negotiation of literary domain. But a literary study
which so strongly contributes to these images in its daily work might
reasonably be made an object of inquiry in its own right. The question then
is not just which authors are "great" or "minor" and so on, but how the role
and status of authors come to be established in the first place, given the fact
that everybody has to begin somewhere outside the literary establishment.
Moreover, literary history is filled with instances in which the status of
"great" or "minor" has undergone considerable fluctuations with respect to
particular authors. Not surprisingly, "contemporary literature" tends to be
the least stable in this regard, because here is the domain in which so much
of the actual "labor" of producing text and constructing images has to be
carried out without the advantage of historical hindsight. A relatively recent
and lesser known undercurrent in this general trend has been constituted by
lines of inquiry whose basic principle is to regard literature as an "empirical

phenomenon." As we might expect, the "empirical" quality of literature
remains disputatious. The question of how far the actual conditions under
which authors lived and wrote may be relevant to the literary result can
scarcely be given a principled answer applying to all or even most cases. We
must always consider the special circumstances of particular authors and
works, including the authors' own sense of what they were about and what
they expected to come of it all. We must therefore be wary of "literary
theories" like orthodox Freudianism or orthodox Marxism, which delight in
making universalistic claims about the "psychic" or social determinants of
literary texts. Whether literature reflects "unconscious bias" or "divisions of
labor" is a matter requiring careful attention to individual cases; and we
need not imagine, as these orthodoxies do, that authors simply have no
control over the determining factors like these.
The first impulse of literary scholars contemplating the "empirical"
status of literature would naturally be historical. This impulse represents our
rich and long-standing commitment to the historicityy" of literature
represented by countless surveys and biographies arranged chronologically
into "periods," "schools," and so on. These constructs in turn have supplied
seemingly orderly procedures for approaching the subject, in that we can
simply start from the earliest period and proceed up as close to the present as
we feel is compatible with our decorum. Yet we have had to pay a
considerable price for this order by backgrounding the respects in which
literature is quite capable of transcending its historical settings, reaching
back into remote periods or anticipating future trends, often with uncanny
sensitivity. Moreover what we tend to regard as "great works" are often
precisely those which are not easily subsumed into historical continuity but
which represent a significant rupture (e.g., Sterne's Tristam Shandy or

Joyce's Ulysses). And of course there is a somewhat artificial flavor in
teaching literature by the decade or by the century, as if important artistic
trends were somehow carried out with an eye to the calendar, and all authors
were in agreement that having reached the year 1900, they had best dispense
with "19th century literature" and get on with "20th century literature" to
avoid confusing future scholars and students.
Recent trends in literary scholarship further contributed to unsettling
conventional historical perspectives. Drawing on aesthetics from classical
antiquity up to the modern period, theoreticians such as Schmidt (1982) and
Beaugrande (1988) have suggested that the social cognitive function of
literature that distinguishes it from other discourse domains is in being
privileged to present alternative versions of "the world" without being
accused of falsification or subversion. Due to this principle, every literary
work is a dialectic between revealing literary conventions of authorship and
the "horizons of expectations" of readership versus the author striving to
present some individual alternative that has not been presented hitherto.
This dialectic accounts for the fact that "great works" are typically those that
innovate against literary conventions, while the "minor works" are those
which adhere to the conventions quite resolutely or which openly imitate
particular models. It should follow that the "history of literature" would in
turn be a dialectic of continuity versus innovation, such that there will
always be particular works, elements, and tendencies for which merely
historical explanations are not adequate.
This dialectic view of literary communication substantially increases
the pressure to reconsider the "empirical" status of literary activities, which
can no longer be so readily subsumed under general historical trends.
Beyond our generalizations about historical, social, and aesthetic trends and

movements, we have the difficult task of sorting out concrete personal and
institutional details bearing on literary communication, not merely as a
matter of procedure but as an essential step toward attaining reliable
substance from making the kinds of statements we have conventionally made
about the status of authors and their works, both at the time of composition
and in our own present.
A vital issue here is the tendency of literary studies to proceed "from
peak to peak" by presenting surveys, particularly in lower division
undergraduate English courses, that deal only with the "great works" as we
see them today. This method naturally distorts the perspective with which
such works were originally received, namely against the backdrop of the
many more numerous "minor works" that set off the "great" ones to best
advantage. A survey of the gallery of the "greats" thereby disrupts rather
than reveals the historical evolutional literature that we set out to expound
and leaves an uncomfortable margin of unaccountability respecting the
individual work. This margin in turn helped to perpetuate the vitalismm"
that monumentalizess" authors and their achievements as something akin to
"divine inspiration" from a gallery of "Muses." For much the same reason,
contemporary literature has suffered neglect, because it tends to present
itself to our view as a conglomerate in which the sorting out of great from the
minor has not yet been achieved, nor indeed have the standards for doing so
been well established. We are thus prone to be rather unfair to our
contemporaries even though their works offer the most tangible empirical
channel for investigating the activities and concerns of authorship.
Empirical evidence is likely to show that authorship itself is usually like
"work in progress," with the authors continually attempting to construct their
own authorship in parallel with the production of their work. Failing to place

these matters into view does not merely impoverish our general understand
of literary communication but also tends to perpetuate the mystifying
vitalismm" that contaminates the process of authorship itself for its would-be
practitioners, notably the population of graduates of "creative writing
programs" in the United States, and on a more elementary level, the
attempts to develop writing skills in the composition curricula.
The question of whether we wish to regard literature as an "empirical
phenomenon" and in what senses is thus certainly a valid one but also one
which will not be easily answered. A convergence of interests on this
phenomenon led to the founding in December of 1987 of an "International
Society for Empirical Studies in Literature" whose membership covers a
broad range of interdisciplinary research, including psychology, sociology,
linguistics, aesthetics and ethnography, along with literary studies itself. It
is important to appreciate that the goal of this society is certainly not to de-
legitimize or antagonize literary studies as practiced in the institution so far
but rather to help situate literary studies along with literary communication
in relevant social contexts. Similarly the society is in no way intended to
"deconstruct" the literary author, as some fashionable schools of theory have
speculated, but to bring the role of literary authorship into view as a personal
and social achievement which deserves, if anything, more respect than it has
received in view of its concrete conditions and problems. The vitalismm" that
monumentalizess" authors actually abridges our appreciation of the
painstaking, often circuitous process whereby authorship has to be obtained.
A further key consideration shared by many members of the new society is
the concern over the increasing marginalization of literature on the
contemporary social scene. The increasing disinclination to read literature
among the population may well have a great deal to do with the methods

applied to the study of literature. Surveys focusing on "great works" and
biographical "monumentalization" of authors naturally tend to intimidate
ordinary readers and give them the impression that literary works are quite
simply beyond their grasp because they lack the ability to become initiated
into a close-knit fraternity of literary scholars. This impression is reinforced
if literature is taught essentially as a process of historical reconstruction of
"correct interpretations" which only the experts or the teachers are entitled to
construct and establish. Approaches to literature which might in fact help to
put it back into its human and social contexts might offer an important
countermeasure leading to educational methods that lessen the gap between
the contemporary reader and the literary work and its author. Surely many
readers would be reassured to recognize how much hard work, sincere effort
and negotiation are entailed in taking on the initiative to become and remain
a literary author.
In this sense it could be readily maintained that the chief claim of
empirical studies of literature on our attention is the prospect that by
resituating literary communication within the context of its empirical
conditions we can help to restore it to its role of social and intellectual
importance which appears increasingly threatened in the wake of extensive
shifts in social communication patterns.

Empirical exploration of literature differs from conventional literary
studies in several additional respects which deserve consideration. First it is
not primarily conceived to be placed in the service of the adjudication of
competing readings for literary texts or disputed passages. It is rather
concerned with the conditions under which particular readings arise and
refers the constant possibility of alternative meanings back to the essential
quality of literariness itself. It is accordingly assumed that "aestheticity" is

the condition of the possibility of multiple meanings for the literary texts and
that the alternativity of literature as a forum for the presentation and
exploration of alternative realities is the most essential justification for the
literary institution at large (Schmidt, 1982). In this perspective the origin
and interaction of competing meanings of a literary work is regarded as a
decided asset rather than a transitional drawback to be corrected by the
exertion of interpretive acumen on the investigator's own part. Indeed a
respect for the empirical conditions of communication precludes the
crusading ambition of the investigator to serve as the model reader conscious
of a privileged interpretation set forth in the role of a model and a resolution.
Instead, the investigator attempts to describe the conditions under which
alternative meanings will necessarily arise, including, if possible, meanings
the investigators are inclined to attribute to the literary work at hand.
In sum, the chief motivation for empirical studies of literature is
ultimately the prospect of resituating the direct communication within the
context of its empirical conditions which can help restore its social and
intellectual importance, which appears increasingly threatened in the wake
of extensive shift in social communication patterns and mass media. Part of
this enterprise is to get the activity of literary studies itself into view.
Instead of merely producing interpretations for specific texts and passages
and attempting to establish which of these has "validity," we want to probe
the conditions under which interpretations arise and are or are not accepted
under a variety of social, psychological and institutional pressures. The view
of literature as a domain of "alternatives" here and above means that
competing interpretations are the best life blood of literary communication.
A definitive "validation" of authorized interpretations, along the lines
proposed by E. D. Hirsch, Jr., would be a grave disservice to literature and

might indeed bring the direct communication to a virtual standstill. Not
surprisingly, the chief literary theories and major energy sources in the last
two decades have worked in the other direction, insisting on the openness of
reading and the non-determinacy of literary meanings, even to the point
where the whole activity of interpretation has been emphatically put in
question (e.g., by "post-structuralists" and deconstructionistss"). However,
most of these trends have not been empirical in the sense at stake in the
present dissertation. The project of establishing the "correct" interpretation
of literary work has unfortunately been superseded by the project of
establishing the "correct" model of the "reader" or of "rhetoricity," "figure
language," and so forth. Hence the new openness toward different ways of
approaching literature is in danger of being closed again as various theories
and theoretical schools compete for dominance and increase the repertory of
interpretations with new examples based on different principles and often
different decorum, but equally remote from the more concrete concerns that
face literary authors, editors, publishers and so forth (Beaugrande, 1988).
Similar problems impend for the familiar issue of literary evaluation.
In the past, periodic crusades to eliminate evaluation from the range of
literary scholarship in the name of "objectivity" reflected a misunderstanding
of the nature and function of evaluation within literary and aesthetic
experience. The literary scholar who indeed managed to approach and
describe literary works in total independence from literary values would
simply no longer be participating in literary communication. Literature does
not merely have values; literature is about values. And a "great work" is one
in which values are not posed as a predecided question (e.g., a matter of
"good taste") but as an issue and problem to be addressed and resolved by the

readers. It is therefore hardly surprising that calls for the elimination of
value have not seriously affected the literary studies so far.
However, values and evaluation are the legitimate concerns of
empirical studies of literature. In this perspective, values reflect particular
kinds of activities on the part of authors, editors, publishers and readers
which bear directly on the central issue in which text producers are in fact
recognized as "literary authors" and assigned a corresponding stature. As
literary scholars, we, of course, continue to participate in the production of
values, whether or not we adopt empirical methods. Even the mere act of
selecting particular authors and their activities as topics for empirical
inquiry represents the decided evaluation regarding what we consider
worthwhile. Still, we might make some headway by attempting to relate our
own evaluations to specific aspects within the activities of literary
communication, so that we are not unduly preoccupied with advocacies of
particular authors and works that we feel everyone should value highly. In
particular, it would be very interesting to see if our evaluation and those of
our colleagues bear any resemblance to the evaluation attained by the
authors themselves or by their immediate contemporaries (e.g., by their
editors). As we shall see in the present dissertation, the relationship
between various ways of establishing values by the several participants is
indeed quite complex. Literary authorship is indeed "work in progress" both
in respect to the individual text during its emergence and in respect to the
author's reputation. The principle of "alternatives" proposed as the central
aspect of literary communication means that the individual author becomes
engaged in a dialectic which sets in as soon as the author has produced one
generally successful work. Thereafter the author is under continual pressure
to meet the expectations created by that work on the one hand and to

innovate against them on the other without alienating the now established
readership. It is not surprising if we get the retrospective impression that
many authors have failed to produce more than a single work and spent the
rest of their careers unsuccessfully trying to resolve the problem of writing in
its shadow.
Here, however, I propose to lay aside for a time the hindsight of
retrospective judgments in order to focus in more detail on the day-to-day
activities and negotiations entailed in the production of any literary work,
whatever the ultimate judgment of history will be. We may thereby be able
to adopt, albeit provisionally, a flexible stance in regard to such issues as
interpretation and evaluation not by regarding them as extraneous to
literature but by attempting to perceive them as ongoing activities of
identifiable participants within literary communication, including ourselves
when we write such dissertations as this. The social, historical and
institutional conditions of doing literary studies, in this case empirical ones,
may come into view by contrasting more remote authors whose reputations
are firmly established with contemporary authors whose reputations are still
very much in flux. It might be imagined that in the case of the more remote
and established reputations we would see an important quality of differences
as compared to authors whose reputations are still hanging in the balance.
But the evidence assembled below contradicts this expectation by indicating
that the concerns and pressures are very similar. The tendency of literary
authors to be remarkably self-conscious about their role certainly applies to
the ones we shall be discussing here. Even material success as an author is
no guarantee that further work will be any easier or simpler. On the
contrary, success can increase the pressure upon the author who must
contend with the public expectation of having the success simply repeated

with minimal alterations, which is quite contrary to the point of literature at
A crucial group of participants in literary communication must be
given much greater recognition here than has traditionally been the case in
literary studies, namely the mediators such as editors, publishers and
reviewers, each of them with their own peculiar concerns when approaching
literary authors and works. On the one hand, the author is a figure of power
and control in the sense that he or she initiates the act of literary
communication and is likely to claim considerable prerogatives and authority
regarding the nature and qualities of the literary work in progress. On the
other hand, the author is obviously dependent to a great extent on the
mediators, without whom a wide readership simply could not be attained.
The result is a complex and ambivalent situation in which judgment, advice,
encouragements and discouragements are interchanged that might well be
seen as an encroachment upon the author's prerogatives as an aesthetic
agent if they are not handled with extreme tact and caution. The "greatness"
of the literary work is a complex conglomerate and often a happy coincidence
of the "greatness" of authors, editors, publishers and reviewers all working
together. This insight does not diminish the role and status of "greatness,"
but does counsel against any monolithic or monumentalizing notions of what
it means and from whence it arises. "Literary greatness" is in the first
instance always a speculation or a wager of some sort, a kind of "let's see" or
"let's hope" in which all the participants are taking a considerable risk of
time, energy and money. The proportion of successes will always be tiny
when compared to the proportion to failures, just as the number of "great"
works is always minuscule in comparison to the total number of literary
works published in any period--a factor which, as we have seen, is obscured

by the tendency of literary studies to be content with surveying the
successfully established "great works." The "winners" and the "losers"
generally know who they are well before the ends of their careers, but the
continual risk, as well as the suspense and unease it involves, remains an
important part of the whole story from the standpoint of human experience.

The Present Project

The considerations raised in the foregoing section reflect the line of
reasoning which motivated the project to be presented in the present
dissertation. The source material will be documented interaction among
authors and their mediators. To gain a sense of perspective, I shall draw
partially upon writers whose reputations are well-established in hindsight
and whose "greatness" is generally, though not universally, conceded. I have
also assembled data on the interactions of contemporary authors and
mediators as they go about their business without the advantage of historical
justification in terms of "greatness." The goal of the dissertation is naturally
not to propound interpretations and evaluations that would attempt to
determine the potential "greatness" of the contemporary sources; in view of
the concerns raised above, such a project would be at the least inappropriate
and at the most simply presumptuous. In return, setting aside the obligation
to adjudicate provides some welcome flexibility in examining concrete data
generated by literary participants who understandably retain a very active
interest in "greatness." We need not be surprised if even established authors
require considerable assistance, guidance and influence before their chances
for success become really substantial; the same holds, of course, even more
for non-established authors.

In terms of data sources, successful authors of the past proffer the
important advantage that much of their interaction with their mediators has
been documented in such media as published correspondence, notebooks,
diaries and similar materials preserved in archives. These resources
enormously facilitate literary investigation, which would otherwise be
obliged to rely on indirect testimony or to sift through widely scattered
archives and family collections. Conversely, contemporary participants
proffer the important advantage that they can be questioned and interviewed
in order to elicit useful data and to focus it on issues which the study of
collected documentation of past authors has indicated to be worthy of close
For its purposes the present investigation makes the basic assumption

that the participants under examination are indeed participating in literary
communication. The justification for this view is ultimately the participants'
own sense of what they are about as well as the institutions in which they
are interacting (e.g., as writers in residence of schools and universities or as
literary editors in recognized publishing houses). The fact that a particular
author may not attract a wide readership on the contemporary scene does not
mean that the author is simply not participating in communication; it is more
likely to mean that literary communication is losing a good deal of its public
character and becoming more of an individual pursuit within a limited circle
of friends, acquaintances and kindred authors. Authorship in this narrower
sense has the value that the authors are likely to know a good deal about
their readers and to have a more direct source of immediate reactions. But it
is natural that authors would aspire to the more traditional and broader
notion of readership even at the price of losing this immediate contact in
addressing a more anonymous "public." It follows that the investigation

presented here is not intended as an intervention in the literary reputation of
authors or of their works. Whether the contemporary authors deserve to be
placed in the same categories as the established authors of the past is a large
question not to be lightly undertaken at a time when it is by no means
certain that the very category of literary authorship accepted, say, in the
nineteenth century will persist in any comparable format in the twenty-first
century. Even if the roles and reputations of literary participants could be

definitively foreclosed by investigations of this kind, it would be hardly
desirable to do so, because we would be disturbing the spontaneous evolution
of literature and circumscribing it in ways that would ultimately only
impoverish it.
The richness and "alternativity" of literature naturally presents
significant problems for empirical study. For most of us working on such a
project, the primary focus will be only analysis of the language itself as we
encounter it in the discourse of literary participants. Both literary studies

and linguistics offer a wide repertory of methods for dealing with language,
and empirical investigations are obliged to be selective. Their center of
gravity here will be discourse analysis' of the kind that has emerged in
recent years as an attempt to resituate both literature and language at large
within the broader context of social interaction. Discourse analysis does not

constitute a cleanly circumscribed method, much less an orthodoxy. On the
contrary, it insists on the breadth and the interdisciplinary quality of the
issues it addresses as it attempts to constitute appropriate and applicable

1Among the scholars in this field influencing the present project are Beaugrande,
Schmidt, Brown and Yule, Bower and Cirilo, Coulthard, Crusius, van Dijk, Dimter,
Easthope, Enkvist, Fillmore, Fine, Fowler, Gulich and Quasthoff, Pavel, Posner,
Robinson, Sinclair, Tannen, and Violi. A complete list of authors and their works
appears in the Reference section of this document.

methods arising from close interaction with the data being assembled. Given
the sheer richness which the data discourse provides, I could hardly expect
the application of some general method such as the description of abstract
grammatical structures, as often practiced in linguistics, to be relevant in all
cases. Flexibility in the methods of analysis allows us to tailor our
investigative steps to the qualities of the data in terms of what would seem
more or less relevant. In the present study, the main emphasis will be on
discourse moves that most decisively influence the interaction between
authors and their mediators, especially those concerned with negotiated
construction of literary texts. Since a "discourse move" is basically an action
category, its manifestations in language can be expected to fluctuate
considerably; here, too, flexibility is an advantage we would not have if we
proceeded by a classification of particular words and phrases, sentence
structures and so on. Our analysis will necessarily have an intuitive
component based on our sense of what is actually occurring in the
interaction. But it seems reasonable to suppose that our own intuitive
understanding corresponds to some degree with the participants' own
intuitive understanding of what is happening, and that we will be able to
find some evidence of such a correspondence between our and their intuitive
understanding within the data themselves. In some cases, the discourse may
indicate that the participants are attempting to convey discourse moves other
than the ones which we would diagnose (e.g., in order to save face) that
might be lost by a greater degree of directness given the risky and complex
niche of literary authorship. This is only to be expected. For much the same
reason, discourse moves may be "multi-functional" in the sense that separate
goals are being pursued simultaneously (e.g., when an editor addresses the
author's literary reputation as an intermediary step in obtaining compliance

to requests for revisions). Due to the breadth of discourse analysis, some
additional concepts will be needed to tailor its potential to the investigation
at hand. One such framework with an ambitious scope can be found in
Siegfried J. Schmidt's volume on the Foundations of the Empirical Study of
Literature (1982). Like many other theoreticians of literature on the
contemporary scene, he shares the uneasiness about the degree to which the
literary profession has regarded the interpretation of individual texts as its
dominating task without reflecting on the conditions of literary
communication. Yet in contrast to many theoreticians, particularly in the
United States, he proposes a radical shift of method, favoring empirical
techniques of sufficient depth and range to capture what he calls the concrete
systems of preconditions under which the production, distribution and
reception of literature take place. One major area of this system is what he
calls literary mediation, covering the concerns we will be raising in the
present work, along with various other modalities.
A central but unconventional concept in Schmidt's approach is that of
needs that motivate the participants in literary communication. Among the
needs that can readily be identified for literary authors we can cite literary
recognition, successful publication, and in some cases at least, supporting or
promoting other authors. These needs require collaboration of intermediaries
such as editors, publishers and reviewers, but the conditions may prove
somewhat difficult. Typically the author's needs for literary recognition imply
a discernment and a creative skill that makes it quite difficult to accept
adroit requests or criticism from the intermediaries. It is not uncommon for
the authors to protest or refuse on the grounds that the work in question has
its own integrity, quality, character and so on, that would be substantially
distorted or damaged by interventions. And it is even more common for

authors to simply ignore or throw out the criticism they get from their
reviewers, since it necessarily seems to raise problems that can no longer be
solved, except perhaps by publishing a revised version of the text; and few
authors would consider this a reasonable demand.
Among the intermediaries it will be the editor we wish to focus on

here. Their needs would include successful publication and the promoting of
authors, including previously unrecognized ones and the accrual of literary
recognition, in this case to the publishing house rather than to the particular
work. On the face of it, these needs might seem to converge with those of the
author. Ideally, they might be served at one and the same time. But the
ideal picture seldom applies to the reality of the situation because literary
production is not like manufacturing ordinary commodities for the general
market. The principle of "alternativity" invoked by Beaugrande and others
means that the production of a literary work must always be elaborately
negotiated within the difficult margin where a literary work can be similar to

others in some ways and still unique in other ways. Yet a certain parallel to
the manufacture of commodities remains, because a number of the same
strictures apply once the book is actually incorporated into a tangible object
with a definite price, and strictly literary considerations can be very
marginal. Nonetheless, no editor can afford to ignore the stringencies of the
marketplace and will occasionally have to adduce them as motives for
prevailing upon authors to accept certain advice. And again, the authors are
likely to feel they are being unduly coerced by circumstances foreign to their
artistic talents. At the worst, authors will raise outcries of "censorship,"
knowing full well that no editor or publisher can fail to react strongly to such
a charge.

Thus, on the one hand are the needs of literary authors and their

mediators to create and manage literary texts and to place them before the
reading public; while, on the other hand are the needs of the society and its
readers to obtain and utilize such a supply.2 The reason why this concept

seems unfamiliar in the study of literature is that we tend to take the
institution of literature very much for granted as something that has always

been with us and always will be. When we do contemplate what might be
motivating participants, we have typically focused on the author from a

vitalist standpoint being literally forced to create texts by virtue of some

higher calling or irresistible inspiration. The notion of literary production as

a job or a calling that meets more mundane needs, such as earning a living,
tends to be regarded with disfavor. And biographers have a strong
preference for authors and, indeed, artists in general, who produced very

successful works but failed dismally as ordinary wage earners and middle-
class citizens.
The needs of society for literature have been similarly neglected, and

partly for the same reasons. The vitalist myth of the struggling artist

coincides nicely with the notion of an unappreciative and thoughtless society

too much caught up in the whirl of materialistic consumption to be able to

recognize great art when it happens. We like to think that the really great

artists are only properly appreciated after their deaths, when the

posthumous fame and honor bestowed upon their work compensates for a
tragic life lived in poverty and obscurity. We have not been assiduous in

2In the original German, Schmidt introduced two different terms, the needs of
authors and intermediaries being "Beduerfnisse" and the needs of society being
"Bedarf." When making the English translation, Beaugrande decided after
consultation with Schmidt to use the English "needs" in both cases (Beaugrande,
personal communication).

inquiring how far the difficult lives of artists are a direct result of the
attitudes of the literary and critical professions in tending to discount
contemporary art in favor of the distant past, whose works we feel more
secure in classifying as "great" or "classic." The "literary canon" is generally
taken as we find it in widely sold anthologies, and our own sense of who does
or does not belong to it is construed as a straightforward product of our own
good taste, rather than of the plans, schedules, and priorities of editors and
publishers. All of this, and particularly the notion of fame coming after
death, is cold comfort to the literary author aspiring to attain a place in the
canon but often having very little notion of how to go about doing so. The
contrasting notion of authors being driven by inspiration on the one hand
and of trying to make a living on the other leaves a wide uncharted space of
concerns related to the strategies of authors, mediators and readers to
balance the inner and outer concerns. The "psychological" composition of the
literary participant has often been kept on the margins of literary studies
under the aegis of methods like New Criticism which insisted that
psychologistm" constitutes a lamentable lapse of scholarship and an
inevitable disregard for the text itself. We thus find William Wimset and
Monroe Beardsley announcing that the consideration of "the psychological
effects of the poem" leads to "impressionism and relativism" and makes "the
poem itself as an object disappear" (1954, p. 1). Similarly, Rene Wellek and
Austin Warren made the influential pronouncement that "There will never
be a proper history of an art" "unless we concentrate on an analysis of the
works themselves and relegate to the background studies in the psychology of
the reader" or "the author" (1956, p. 130). Beaugrande (1988, p. 40) remarks
that Wellek and Warren's stance is probably motivated by an anxiety that

studying psychological aspects might relativize, undermining the process of
evaluation, which they consider absolutely central.
Moreover, "psychology" itself is by no means a defined concept or field.
Within the human sciences, the dominant method for much of this century
has been "behaviorism," a reductive approach derived from "unified science,"
operationalismm," physicalismm," and other reductive frameworks quite hostile
to mentalistt" concepts like "mind," "thought," "idea," and so on. The
standard behaviorist view of language was that utterances are "responses"
made to a "stimulus" from the environment, or from another person. The
"meaning" of a word, utterance and so on was defined not as a "mental event"

but as "the situation in which the speaker utters it and the response which is
called for is in the hearer" (Bloomfield, 1933, p. 142, 139 f.).
Understandably, this conception has hardly been attractive to scholars of
literature, which is precisely the mode of "alternativity" in which
communication is freed in principle and in practice from any direct
connections to real situations. Nor can we get very far with behaviorist
claims that "a beautiful poem may make the hearer more sensitive to later
stimuli" or that literature is a type of "linguistic interaction" for "refining and
intensifying human response" (Bloomfield, 1933, p. 41.)
For most literary scholars, the term "psychology" has widely been

identified with Freudian psychoanalysis, which the official science of
"psychology" in most institutions and universities either marginalizes or
relegates to a special division of "clinical psychology." The attraction of
Freud's methods is immediately obvious, because his foremost concern was
always with "interpretation," often quite figurative or allegorical. Literary
scholars can easily resonate with Freud's elaborate and often ingenious
assignment of symbolic significance, ambiguities, unconscious fantasies, and

so on to the utterances or objects both in ordinary life and in works of art.
Moreover, Freud himself had a keen sensitivity to literature and was capable
of writing in an exquisitely literary style that did much to help popularize his
ideas, though some of this is lost in the heavy-handed English translations of
his followers like Ernest Jones who delighted in introducing Latin and Greek
derivatives and neologisms.
The wave of Freudian approaches to literature seems to have peaked

and subsided. Beaugrande (1988) speculates that several motives were
influential here. The reductive preoccupation with childhood traumas and
infantile fantasies tends to level out the varieties and complexity of literature
as well as the personalities of the authors themselves, who tend to be classed
as "oral-anal," "phallic," and so forth (e.g., Holland, 1968). As soon as the
novelty wears off, Freud's framework begins to feel uncomfortably narrow. A
related type of reductionism lies in the popular notion that we can construct
"a dictionary of symbols" which allows us to say what the meaning of objects,
images and so on in literary texts has to be, and finally, the Freudian method
has been critically weakened by spirited confrontations with feminism and
A lesser-known stream of "psychology" might be more useful for
empirical studies such as the present volume. This stream goes by the name
of "third force psychology," which is programmatically selected to emphasize
its status as an alternative to the two "forces" of behaviorism and
Freudianism. The leading figures in the development of this method, such as
Karen Homey (1945, 1950) and Abraham Maslow (1954) argue that the
human personality is a complex of needs and of strategies for subserving
those needs and balancing the inner and the outer worlds in daily existence.
The human agent strikes a "bargain with fate" to approach the world in

certain ways in return for an appropriate and desired treatment and reward.
Personality problems are typically due either to a tendency to exaggerate one
particular strategy at the expense of others (e.g., by attempting to perfect
your self to an unreasonable degree) or else from encountering a real-life
situation where the bargain simply breaks down in that you seem to be
denied the rewards you deserve and are given instead vicious and
unreasonable punishment. The usefulness of Third Force psychology for my
own purposes lies above all in the central concept of needs ranging from
physical ones such as hunger upward through more social ones such as love,
respect and membership in a group, up to the apex of "self-actualization" in
using your abilities and talents with conspicuous success in some calling or
vocation. People develop "solutions" for their needs that "give form and
direction to the whole personality," and "determine the kinds of satisfactions
which are attainable, the factors to be avoided, the hierarchy of values, the
relation to others;" in short, they are "modus vivendi a way of life." (Homey,
1950, p. 186.) The three major categories of solutions include the "expansive
solution" of striving for "mastery" in your actions and personal relations; the
"self-effacing solution" of subordinating oneself to others and being
dependent upon them; and the "detached solution" of withdrawing from other
people and thereby needing neither to master them or to be mastered by
them (Homey, 1950, particularly chapters 8 and 9). Probably due to the
interest in diagnosing and treating "neuroses," the Third Force psychologists
devote the most attention to the "expansive solutions," which are also the
most conspicuous and disruptive and the most liable to exaggerations and
extremes. They accordingly subdivide the expansive into three further
subdivisions. The "narcissistic" type creates and adores an "idealized" self,
which becomes a source of buoyancy, resiliency and charm. The

"perfectionist" type feels superior for having higher standards, both moral
and intellectual, than other people do. The "arrogant-vindictive" type is
continually motivated by a need to triumph over other people, usually felt as
an act of requiting them for assumed opposition, wrongs, insults and so on.
All three "expansive" types share the tendency to "expand" their own
personality and field of action by narrowing those of other people.
It is important to bear in mind that these designations properly refer
to solutions and not to people, even though, for the sake of exposition, Homey
herself does condense each of them into a person exemplifying them in
strikingly pronounced ways, which she characterizes as "neurotic." This
exposition has indeed created some misunderstandings, above all the failure
to appreciate that some version of these solutions is essential to all
personalities, however healthy, and that there is considerable potential for
positive influences and laudable accomplishments. The central source of
neurosis in Homey's view is the degree to which a particular solution is
applied in ways that are not appropriate to the person's situation so that
increasing stress and exertions are needed to keep up appearances until
finally the solution becomes obsessive for the person and intrusive upon
others. The mismatch between the person's real situation and the person's
solutions for fulfilling needs is the prime origin for "alienation," a term used
here in the sense of a concerted attempt to become someone other than what
you can actually manage. Yet a "bargain with fate" becomes steadily more
unbalanced as you continue to receive treatment which you do not feel you
deserve, and you intensify your efforts to force yourself and your world into
the mode of your dominant solution. Like Freud, the Third Force
psychologists have a keen interest in literature, but instead of devoting their
attention to the interpretation of symbols and the extraction of infantile

fantasies and traumas, they prefer to portray literary characters as
personalities incorporating the "solutions" sketched above. Noting that
"great writers have intuitively grasped" personality processes and have
presented them in more impressive forms than the psychiatrist can hope to

do," Homey cites for instance Captain Ahab in Mobv Dick, Heathcliff in
Wuthering Heights and Julien in The Red and the Black (1950, p. 198).

There are literary scholars, notably Bernard Paris (1986a, 1991), who have

found over 120 examples by representing very detailed analyses of the
personalities in literary works, including the novels of Jane Austen and, most
recently, the plays of Shakespeare. Unlike analyses which dismantle the
literary work into a collection of "symbols," "metaphors," "stylistic features"
and so on, analyses of this type leave literary work looking more coherent
than before rather than less. Narrative line and the personalities of the
characters are seen in a constellation of interactions and conflicts that have a

relentless inner logic, sometimes even against the will of the author.

Moreover, authors and readers enjoy seeing this interaction of strategies,
whereby they can associate with and vicariously live through their own

tendencies toward narcissism, perfectionism, vindictiveness and so on and

recognize the needs for constraints and balances. Intriguingly, authors often
include commentary suggesting they are not in fact well aware of the forces
of personality of their own characters, due in part to their own tendencies to
exaggerate solutions.
It is hardly surprising that literary authors can tout the "expansive"

solutions. The "self-effacing" and "detached" solutions might well discourage
people from wanting to be creative artists in the first place. There is

something inherently expansive in wanting to assume the role of literary
author and to present one's own creations as exemplary, interesting,

aesthetically pleasing and so forth. Moreover, most of the criteria whereby
"great works" are measured reflect narcissistic, perfectionist or aggressive

tendencies. Literary authors are particularly prone not merely to seek the
"perfect" work of art but also to regard themselves as exceptional or beautiful

people triumphing over the accomplishments of other authors and, at times,

over the poor taste and insensitivity of the reading public. Indeed, the

literary author's "bargain with fate" would seem to be a peculiarly risky one

where the ratio between your efforts and your rewards are harrowingly

difficult to control and where the ultimate category of "greatness" is both

varied and elusive--and, of course, irredeemably expansive.

It accordingly seems reasonable that Third Force psychology offers an

approach to human personality and its needs which can be insightfully

applied to the interaction between literary authors and their mediators.

Sometimes literary authors and mediators seem to be working in close

harmony. Other times the two appear to be working entirely at cross

purposes, each of them trying, with very little success, to change the behavior

and tactics of the other. The outcome is a considerable range of degrees of

collaboration. In the following section, we shall examine evidence for two

degrees of collaboration: lower and higher, while also analyzing editors'

attempts to "steer" other wayward authors toward a state of collaboration.

The material will be drawn particularly from published correspondence

between authors and mediators as well as from unpublished transcripts of

interviews I conducted with contemporary writers and editors.3

3In reproducing the correspondence I have followed the editors' (Baker for
Hemingway, Kuehl and Bryer or Bruccoli and Duggan for Fitzgerald) lead in
reproducing misspelling, mispunctuation, italicizing, underlining, etc. My
abridgement of material is indicated by bracketed ellipses. In the case of
transcribed interviews, I have followed the transcriptionist's lead in rendering
spoken discourse into written English. Pauses in discussion are indicated by an

Within this framework, we spend the bulk of Chapter 2 examining
examples of lower degree of collaboration. With our analysis we determine
personality types who have a tendency to engage in this degree of
collaboration, and we identify the moves they make, which in some cases
they attempt to mask, as they plot strategies for meeting their needs. This
chapter particularly focuses on Ernest Hemingway at an early stage in his
career. Hemingway is of particular interest because of his bald desire to
become a successful author, a desire which leads him to manipulate
acquaintances in ways which while perhaps morally reprehensible are
nevertheless successful. Especially revealing of his tendency to a lower

degree of collaboration is the way in which he uses his adamance toward this
degree to sever his contractual obligations to one editor and publisher in
order to work with another. Within this chapter we also examine a

contemporary author, Harry Crews, whose degree of collaboration, though
the same as Hemingway's, reveals a different personality subtype, thus
illustrating another kind of author with different discourse moves for
displaying essentially the same degree of collaboration as his presently more

illustrious partner, or given Crews' combative stance perhaps "competitor"
would be a more appropriate term, in literary enterprise.
Within this chapter we also examine and identify several other

personality types who display a tendency toward a lower degree of
collaboration, though with these examples we see the degree of collaboration
motivated more by social and artistic concerns than by a particular working
relationship with an editor. Indeed, we see these self-same artists, in the

unbracketed ellipsis. All material for the Gainesville creative writers and the New
York editor is taken from single interviews with the exception of Harry Crews; I
have indicated the difference in Crews' interviews by citing dates. All page numbers
refer to my unpublished transcripts.

fourth chapter, exhibiting a degree of collaboration that is steered by their
editors toward a higher degree of collaboration, thus indicating a precept of
the psychology at play: that healthy individuals manipulate a variety of
strategies in order to successfully make their way through the world.
In keeping with our emphasis on mediators, we note the strategies
successfully used by Maxwell Perkins, an editor at Scribner's in the heyday
of the Lost Generation, to initiate contact with, and maintain a working
relationship with, the young ambitious Hemingway. The editor's ability to
simultaneously meet both authorial and editorial needs borders on sheer
genius, I believe, and the discourse moves in which he engages an author
with an announced proclivity toward a lower degree of collaboration reflect
his skill in mediating.
Perkins and his mediative skills figure prominently in Chapter 3,
which is almost wholly given over to an examination of a higher degree of
collaboration as exemplified by his work with F. Scott Fitzgerald to produce
The Great Gatsbv, a feat which, in retrospect, borders on the incredible.
Given the working relationship between the two men, born of Perkins' desire
to move American literature from the Victorian prose of writers like James
and Wharton to something more modern and of Fitzgerald's ability to have
done so once with the publication of his immensely successful This Side of
Paradise, a success balanced by his popularity in the pulp presses which led
him to spend more time on what he subsequently called the "trashy
imaginings" of the spokesman for the Jazz Age and less time writing serious
literature, we see the editor helping the author expansively move toward a
new kind of writing while reassuring the self-effacing Fitzgerald that his
writing is worthwhile, all the while keeping in mind the business demands of
such a commercial venture. The relationship, strategies, discourse moves

and needs of both men displayed in the production of Gatsbv proved to be as
complex as the preceding sentence.
The fourth chapter analyzes a gray area of mediation, for writers are

sometimes not lief to comply with commercial needs, or are very lief to
suggest alternatives to editors in ways which require some skill on a
mediator's part. At times, however, editors must disregard authorial needs,
particularly when they have a negative impact on a commercial venture such
as publishing a novel, necessitating strategies for "steering" a wayward
author toward some degree of collaboration. This chapter relies again on
Perkins and his collaboration with Fitzgerald, though this time the novel
they work on is Tender Is the Night, a project which consumed a great deal of
time, energy and money. Within this chapter we also attempt to make good
use of our contemporary sources by examining the data available from our
interviews. Our attempt includes an examination of an authorial view of
editors' attempts to steer collaboration by focusing on the construction of a
particular area of publishing a text, namely by looking at book covers or
jackets and how their composition may be negotiated. We also investigate
several contemporary editors' working relationships with a writer, Harry
Crews, earlier seen to have a decided tendency toward a lower degree of
collaboration; we illustrate and note the discourse moves they make and the
strategies they take in an effort to steer him toward even that minimal
degree of collaboration. And within this chapter we focus upon editorial
needs and efforts to ensure collaboration by analyzing our interview with
Melissa Ann Singer, a senior editor at Tor Books.


Typical Moves of Expansive Authors

In this section we shall examine some of our data to explore how the
characteristics of discourse interaction between authors and mediators are
influenced by personality types of the participants. On the one hand, we will

be seeing discourse moves that are typical for this kind of interaction, as
stipulated by the typical conditions of collaborating on publication projects.
On the other hand, we shall see that the detailed implementation of these
discourse moves follows patterns that make sense in terms of the personality
types we may be able to attribute to each individual. A lower degree of
collaboration is what might well be expected for authors whose personality
type is predominantly expansive; since such a personality typically "expands"
at the expense of other people, it would routinely wish to play the leading
role in interactions with mediators and would be loath to adapt or
compromise when differences arise. The lower degree of collaboration
between authors and mediators can be handily explored with respect to
Ernest Hemingway. He was undeniably very demanding both as a
personality and as a literary author, even fairly early in his career. His
needs for literary recognition, admiration and remuneration were intense;
even great successes did not appear to satisfy him, or to prevent him from
reprimanding his publishers for not making them greater still. He had no

particular scruples about breaking a contract with a publishing house if he
saw an opportunity to do better for himself elsewhere, as was, in fact, the
case with The Sun Also Rises.
Looking back to the general needs of authors cited in Chapter 1, the
considerations of literary recognition and successful publication were
particularly pronounced in Hemingway's case. He had no use whatsoever for
the role of the struggling artist who achieves fame and recognition only after
death; in fact, he seems to have been rather intolerant of any delays in
producing a text which could bring him immediate fame and fortune. To the
extent that he supported or promoted other authors, he typically did so in his
capacity as the holder of a literary reputation and by implication, a figure of
high literary discernment, who was hence eminently suited to say who might
be worthy of attention and publication. Moreover, the act of recommending
other authors to the attention of an editor, reviewer and so on is a relatively
easy one with little risk or effort for an author, except when there are
prospects of genuine competition.
Typical of Hemingway's need for recognition was taking the initiative
in contacting literary figures who might produce reviews of his works or
persuade other people to do so, which seems the strategy of the discourse of
his letter to Edmund Wilson dated November 11, 1923.


[1.1]In Burton Rascoe's Social and Literary Notes I saw you had drawn
his attention to some writing of mine in the Little Review.
[1.2]I am sending you Three Stories and Ten Poems. [1.3]As far as I
know it has not yet been reviewed in the States. [1.4]Gertrude Stein
writes me she has done a review but I don't know whether she has
gotten it published yet.
[1.5]You don't know anything in Canada.

[1.6]I would like to send out some for review but do not know whether
to put a dedication, as compulsory in France, or what. [1.7]Being an
unknown name and the books unimposing they would probably be
received as by Mr. Rascoe who has not yet had time, after three
months, to read the copy Galantiere sent him. [1.8](He could read it
all in an hour and a half.)
[1.9]The Contact Publishing Co. is McAlmon. [1.10]It has published
Wm. Carlos Williams, Mina Loy, Marsden Hartley and McAlmon.
[1.11]I hope you like the book. [1.12]If you are interested could you
send me the names of four or five people to send it to to get it
reviewed? [1.13]It would be terribly good of you. [1.14]This address
will be good until January when we go back to Paris.
[1.15]Thanking you very much whether you have the time to do it or
not. (Baker, 1981, pp. 102-103)
This letter is an interesting mixture of a dry, businesslike tone with a

casual, confidential tone that somewhat hides the extent of the request he is
in fact making. Without any preface by way of personal conversation or small
talk, Hemingway immediately addresses the reason why he feels justified in
writing the letter; somewhat oddly, he does not thank Wilson for "drawing
the attention to some writing of mine" which could reasonably be expected
here. Then Hemingway immediately goes to the next "writing" to which he
would doubtless like "attention drawn" though he does not say what Wilson
is to actually to do with it other than "like the book." Instead, he drops some
rather obvious hints that Wilson should review the book or get it reviewed
first by saying that it hasn't yet been reviewed in the States, which would
give Wilson an opportunity to be the first to do so [1.3] and then another
review he does know about may not have been "published yet" [1.4], so there
might still be time to anticipate it--and, of course, Wilson ought to know and
respect Gertrude Stein as someone who wouldn't review a book unless it had
genuine merit. A similarly heavy hint comes in [1.6] in which Hemingway
declares his ignorance not merely of whether the book has been reviewed but
how to go about getting it reviewed. His own lack of reputation at the time is

the theme of [1.7], where we learn that rather than being grateful for the
mention by Rascoe, he's annoyed the latter "has not yet had time after three
months to read" his work. His annoyance becomes obtrusive in [1.7],
suggesting that Rascoe's apparent excuse of "not having time" is in fact not
genuine, because only a short time would be quite sufficient. It is not until
[1.12] that Hemingway actually formulates a request, and again, not for a
review as such, but for names of people who would write the review. In
return, Wilson will have the privilege of feeling "terribly good," and he could,
no doubt, feel even better if he leans on Rascoe to get around to reading the
book. In between these various moves, we have some odd fillers whose
function is more opaque. The sentence about Canada [1.5] would make no
sense at all except as a question whether Wilson, in fact, "does know
anything," because if Wilson really doesn't know anything, then Canada is
obviously irrelevant to the entire letter. Also a bit mystifying is
Hemingway's suggestion that "putting a dedication" is somehow extremely
relevant, or indeed absolutely necessary if an author wishes his books to be
sent out for review; perhaps the point here is simply to suggest that
Hemingway is conversant with French literary circles and at the same time
indicate why he is not knowledgeable about what to do at this point and
needs Wilson's help. Finally, the paragraph about "McAlmon" would make
sense only if the "contact publishing company" was also Hemingway's
publisher and he wanted to impress Wilson with some other names of people
whose works had been produced. Merely to state that the publishing
company is "McAlmon" [1.9] seems abrupt and awkward and presupposes
some willingness on Wilson's part to puzzle out the oddities of the letter on
top of complying with the request. Lack of consideration might also be seen
when Hemingway indicates that the address will be only "good until

January" [1.14] but does not say what the Paris address will be, suggesting
that Wilson had better get busy while he still has a "good address" to get
back to Hemingway. Even the closing salutation is stilted, and probably
deliberately hints that for Wilson, too, the demands on his time that
Hemingway is making here are quite modest, since Wilson is surely at least

as good a reader as Rascoe and can get through the book in "an hour and a
half' [1.8].
It is easy to imagine that if Wilson complies, Hemingway will in turn
use him and his reputation as a means to approach the reviewers whose
names have been relayed. The condition, "if you are interested" [1.12],
encourages Wilson to say that he is, indeed, and this would make a nice

quote for Hemingway's further letters. Surely the reviewers would want to be
thought well of by someone of Edmund Wilson's caliber. We can also imagine
him offering each reviewer individually the chance to be the very first in the

United States to recognize Hemingway as a new literary talent, and cajoling
them about how quickly and easily they could read the book if they desired.

It probably doesn't occur to Hemingway that writing a review would take any
time of its own.
All in all, we can already see Hemingway's strong needs for literary
recognition, even at a stage where, as he himself admits, his work has been
rather slight. He seems to hope that favorable reviews from prominent
people will compensate and turn what might be a very unsuccessful
publication into a successful one. Hemingway's need for recognition is so
strong that he apparently doesn't feel uncomfortable with the liberties and
oddities of the letter itself, as noted above, which a less impatient and more
considerate person would have had good reason to revise, say, by opening
with an expression of gratitude for the "calling of attention" and then saying

something like, "I feel encouraged by this courtesy to hope that .," instead
of merely falling back on the lack of previous reviews and on his own
uncertainty about how to proceed. The only "thanking" in the letter is
immediately followed by a hint that Wilson might not, in fact, deserve it, and
might instead, like Rascoe, seek to excuse himself for not "having the time,"
which Hemingway has already insisted is unreasonable. The expansiveness
of the author's personality is thus reflected in a discourse whose construction
might otherwise seem a bit peculiar and at times barely coherent (e.g., the
abrupt aside about Canada [1.5]). The expansiveness accounts for the extent
to which Hemingway is concerned with getting other people to help him with
his reputation, even to the point of prodding them to be quick about it. A
subsidiary move is his name dropping, which, aside from Rascoe's, manages
to crowd five prominent literary names into the brief letter, all of them in a
context which suggests Hemingway is either very equal by virtue of having
the same publisher or has already been recognized by them as worthy of
being reviewed.
Hemingway's expansiveness turns up in a somewhat different key
when he writes to acknowledge an inquiry by Perkins, who, as we shall see
later on, was tipped off by Fitzgerald to contact Hemingway. Though we do
not have access to Perkins' letter of contact, we can examine Hemingway's

reply, dated April 15, 1925.


[2.1]0n returning from Austria I received your letter of February 26
inclosing a copy of a previous letter which unfortunately never reached
me. [2.2]About ten days before your letter can I had a cabled offer
from Boni and Liveright to bring out a book of my short stories in the
fall. [2.3]They asked me to reply by cable and I accepted.
[2.411 was very excited at getting your letter but did not see what I
could do until I had seen the contract from Boni and Liveright.

[2.5]According to its terms they are to have an option on my next three
books, they agreeing that unless they exercise this option to publish
the second book within 60 days of the receipt of the manuscript their
option shall lapse, and if they do not publish the second book they
relinquish their option on the the third book.
[2.6]So that is how matters stand. [2.7]I cannot tell you how pleased I
was by your letter and you must know how gladly I would have sent
Charles Scribner's Sons the manuscript of the book that is to come out
this fall. [2.8]It makes it seem almost worthwhile to get into Who's
Who in order to have a known address.
[2.9]I do want you to know how much I appreciated your letter and if I
am ever in a position to send you anything to consider I shall certainly
do so.
[2.10]I hope some day to have a sort of Doughty's Arabia Deserta of the
Bull Ring, a very big book with some wonderful pictures. [2.11]But
one has to save all winter to be able to bum in Spain in the summer
and writing classics, I've always heard, takes some time.
[2.12]Somehow I don't care about writing a novel and I like to write
short stories and I like to work at the bull fight book so I guess I'm a
bad prospect for a publisher anyway. [2.13]Somehow the novel seems
to me to be an awfully artificial and worked out form but as some of
the short stories now are stretching out to 8,000 to 12,000 words
maybe Ill get there yet.
[2.14]The [Paris] In Our Time is out of print and I've been trying to
buy one to have myself now I hear it is valuable; so that probably
explains your difficulty in getting it. [2.15]I'm awfully glad you liked
it and thank you again for writing me about a book. (Baker, 1981, pp.
This letter makes an interesting counterpiece to Hemingway's

approach of Edmund Wilson as seen in Sample 1. At first it would appear
that Hemingway is being courteous and reassuring by opening with an alibi
for not having written earlier. The lateness of April 15 compared to February
26 and even more so to the unmentioned date of the "previous letter" might
easily be taken as a signal of disinterest in what Perkins has proposed, but in
fact the issue of timing is integrally related to Hemingway's scheme to
somehow secure a relationship with Scribners in spite of the fact that he is
already legally committed to Boni and Liveright. He specifies that he had
accepted an offer "about ten days before your letter can [came]" [2.2] and

emphasizes twice that "cables" [2.2 and 2.3] were involved rather than
letters, as if Hemingway were the victim of too much speed rather than too
little. In the next paragraph, Hemingway actually seems complimentary in
owning how "excited" [2.4] he was about "getting your letter" [2.7] and feels
that he must reemphasize this in a further paragraph in being "pleased" [2.7]
at the attention and "how gladly" [2.7] he would have reciprocated. Indeed,
he might seem to go overboard with his flattery with his remark about Who's
Who [2.8] were it not that it's an important stroke in building his own

reputation. He then cools down again into "appreciating" and affirms his
intent to "send anything" [2.9] he may be able to. Interspersed with all of
this flattery and clashing with it somewhat are the technical details of the
contract which Hemingway emphasizes he had not "seen" [2.4] at the time
that he "accepted by cable" [2.3]. Considering that Hemingway was
relatively unknown at the time, the contract from Boni and Liveright does
sound very favorable in committing itself to materials they haven't even seen
and in anticipating a success for which there was little evidence at that time.
Hemingway's position is also a cogent motive for being so ingratiating,
though as we saw in the case of Wilson, he didn't always expect to be this

Several things are going on at once in the paragraph about future
projects. He expresses his disinclination regarding extended literary works
as long as "novels" calling them "an awfully artificial and worked out form,"
but reneges by saying that he expects to "get there yet" as he develops his
technique for steadily longer "short stories" [2.13]. This need not be modesty
on Hemingway's part, which would be inconsistent with his expansive
tendencies, but rather a hint to Perkins that he is going to require some
powerful motivation and rewards if Perkins is shopping for novelists. This

conjecture is confirmed by Hemingway's very broad allusion to how much it
would cost to write the project he has in mind, which certainly seems to
suggest that Perkins should give him the money to "bum in Spain" for
however much "time" it will take to "write classics" [2.11]. The project is
whimsically presented as something of a touristic or local color project
hoping to attract audiences with "wonderful pictures" [2.10]. It is made out
that it would not be a novel if left to its own devices, but perhaps with
suitable rewards, Hemingway might become a much better "prospect for a
publisher" [2.12]. Alternatively, Perkins might see the wisdom of accepting
collections of short stories from Hemingway and postponing expectations for

a novel, which would, of course, expand Hemingway's prerogatives at the
expense of Perkins. The final paragraph appears to be a thoughtful reference
to Perkins' previous letter and his "difficulty" in getting some of Hemingway's

previous work, but Hemingway's expansiveness shows through here both in
remarking on how "valuable" [2.14] the work is and sold out ("out of print")
and his making no offer to get one for Perkins, which a less expansive person
would surely have realized was the least he could do in the interests of a
future relationship. Hemingway expects Perkins to believe that he himself
doesn't have a copy and can't manage to "buy one," and here, too, a less
expansive writer might have suspected that this would be a bit difficult to
The most expansive move of all is not contained in this letter, but as

we know from subsequent events, it was Hemingway's plan to actually break
his contract to Boni and Liveright and give Scribner's both Torrents of Spring
and The Sun Also Rises (the novel desired by both publishers) after all. This
was somewhat of an audacious move on the part of an author who is not well-
established, showing rank ingratitude for a very favorable contract and a

willingness to sacrifice the goals and financial interest of other parties to his
own. Even without Perkins' letter to Hemingway, we can be reasonably
assured that Perkins never suggested such a thing, but was writing on the
assumption that Hemingway did not yet have a contract at all. Yet in his

professional role, Perkins could not allow any self-effacing gestures on his
part to interfere when the future of the company might well be affected, as he
had good reason to expect.
Hemingway's pretext for breaking the contract was that the publisher

had requested changes that Hemingway proceeded to interpret as a form of
censorship. Fitzgerald notified Perkins that Hemingway's excuse was "all
bull" (letter of May 12, 1927), but again Perkins could not have very well

done otherwise than accept the excuse at face value. Moreover, it was a
typically expansive excuse, both asserting the absolute right of the author to
decide what should or should not be written and giving Perkins some

advance warning to be very wary about suggesting such changes to
Hemingway in the future.
In fact, we have a record of Hemingway's feelings toward the issue
with Liveright from his letter dated March 31, 1925, which is just close

enough to the date of his letter to Perkins that he might have been so
gracious because he could see a chance to turn the resentment his
expansiveness had felt against Liveright to his own financial and
reputational advantage. The letter evidently accompanied the signed


[3.1]Enclosed is the signed contract and a new story to replace the one
you are eliminating as censorable.
[3.2]As the contract only mentions excisions it is understood of course
that no alterations of words shall be made without my approval.

[3.3]This protects you as much as it does me as the stories are written
so tight and hard that the alteration of a word can throw an entire
story out of key. [3.4]I am sure you and Mr. T. R. Smith [Liveright
editor] understand this.
[3.5]There is nothing in the book that has not a definite place in its
organization and if I at any time seem to repeat myself I have a good
reason for doing so.
[3.6]As for obscenities you and Mr. Smith being on the spot know what
is and what is not unpublishably obscene much better than I do. [3.7]I
understand that it is no longer necessary to eliminate the fine old word
son of a bitch. [3.8]This is indeed good news.
[3.9]As for the book selling or not selling, I don't look on it in any way
as a lost cause. [3.10]I think, looking at it quite dispassionately that it
has a good gambling chance to sell.
[3.11]The classic example of a really fine book that could not sell was
E. E. Cummings Enormous Room. [3.12]But Cummings book was
written in a style that no one who had not read a good deal of "modern"
writing could read. [3.13]That was hard luck for selling purposes.
[3.14]My book will be praised by highbrows and can be read by
lowbrows. [3.15]There is no writing in it that anybody with a high-
school education cannot read.
[3.16]That is why I say it has a good 3/1 chance. [3.17]And I never bet
on Jeffries at Reno nor Carpentier nor other sentimental causes.
[3.18]If cuts are made outside of possible necessary elimination of
obscenities, if there are any, it will be shot to pieces as an organism
and nobody will praise it and nobody want to read it. [3.19]The reason
I mention this is that there was a report over here that certain things
were to be eliminated because they did not seem to have anything to
do with the story. [3.20]Probably it was without foundation.
[3.21]The new story makes the book a good deal better. [3.22]It's
about the best I've ever written and gives additional unity to the book
as a whole.
[3.23]You are eliminating the second story--Up in Michigan. [3.24]The
next three stories move up one place each and this new story--the
Battler--takes the place at present occupied by The Three Day Blow.
[3.25]I do not need to tell how pleased I am to be published by Boni
and Liveright and I hope I will become a property. [3.26]That's up to
both of us.
[3.27]I would like to have the proofs as soon as possible. (Baker, 1981,
pp. 154-155)
True to form, Hemingway jumps into business in the first sentence.
Any later references to business, however, are intimately tied up with

Hemingway's expansive estimate of the book's values, which forms the
background and motive for his resistance to the changes Liveright had
evidently posed. He prophesies the book has "a good gambling chance to sell"
[3.10], addressing a point that Liveright undoubtedly had raised. This claim
is expansively backed up by asserting his expertise in gambling (e.g., at
"Reno" or "Carpentier" [3.17]), where he would never follow a "sentimental"
urge [3.17]. Liveright had evidently been cautious enough to stipulate that
the book as it stood might be very good and yet not sell, and Hemingway's
rebuttal is to point out that this only happens when a book is "too high brow,"
a qualification certainly nobody could have made about his own. The fact
that "a high school education" [3.15] is quite adequate to understand
Hemingway was an uncanny business move, too, considering how much time
people in high school spend having to read Hemingway.
From another writer, the statement about being very "pleased to be
published" and hoping to "become a property" [3.25] might seem merely
noncommittal and gracious, but that would not be consistent with
Hemingway. Also less innocuous than it seems is the solidarity in "that's up
to both of us" [3.26], considering how much of the letter is devoted to
establishing Hemingway's authority to decide what will be written and
Hemingway's resistance to the advice from Liveright is based on two
moves. The first is to insist on his interpretation of the letter of the
"contract," namely that Hemingway must "approve" every single "alteration"

[3.2]. The other move is to argue of course from his artistic expertise and he
sounds unexpectedly like a New Critic or a formalist, but surely by accident,
in maintaining that no single detail could be changed without altering if not
destroying the literary quality of his work. If that were the case, the role of

editors would lose one of its major functions, which is precisely to make
alterations that in no way detract from artistic quality but rather enhance it.
The subsequent paragraphs give us a good idea of what Liveright wanted.
Repetitions are obviously vulnerable material when it comes to making cuts,
and it would have been interesting to see Hemingway's justification in detail
by spelling out his "good reasons" for "repeating himself." On the matter of
"obscenities," Hemingway is unexpectedly contrite, doubtless because he
realizes implicitly that they were elements that could be removed without
"throwing the entire story out of key" [3.3]. After the digression on gambling,
which stands in stark contrast to the technical businesslike talk of
"contracts," Hemingway again takes a quasi-New Critical stance regarding
any "cuts" other than "obscenities" [3.6], though this time argued from the
standpoint of the reader rather than the author. His argument
unmistakably evokes the perfectionist subtype of the expansive solution. The
effect is even more fantastic in arguing that "nobody will want to read" a
book from which any cuts have been made [3.18]--as if the public were in any
position to notice this, let alone object to it. Hemingway's reference to a
"report" [3.19] over here, probably without "foundation" [3.20], offers
Liveright a chance to back down from demands Hemingway probably knew
very well they were making. Switching from aggression to compliance while
at the same time serving his own expansion, Hemingway heaps praise on
"the new story" he supplied at the publisher's request [3.21] and even says it
"gives additional unity to the book as a whole" [3.22], without realizing this
flatly contradicts his earlier argument that nothing could be changed and
that the unity of the book was at its absolute maximum the way it stood.
Here the only thing required is to shift the order of the stories around [3.24].

The closing of the letter is pure Hemingway, all impatience after
elaborate antics on his part that the other people in his business dealings
should proceed with the utmost speed. For a less expansive author, such a
sentence might seem gratuitous, since the publisher has every reason to
"send the proofs as soon as possible" [3.27]. After all, one can hardly imagine
an author saying something like "Take your time on the proofs."
It is interesting to see how much Hemingway's changing image has
affected his epistolary style since the letter to Wilson, which we read as
Sample 1. Whereas that letter had alternated in being dryly businesslike
and in disclaiming expertise of how to proceed, this one absolutely radiates
confidence in Hemingway's achievement to an astonishing degree, even to
the point of making utterly fantastic claims. In addition, Hemingway is
clearly fitted into the macho role reflected in many of his characters, as was
seen not merely from claims to being a hard and savvy gambler and his
fondness for demonstrative obscenities, but in his occasionally violent
metaphorics of "cuts," "chopped to pieces as an organism" [3.18], which are
hardly innocent from a man obsessed with death and hunting, as
Hemingway was. Yet he does not go so far as to count himself fully on the
side of the "low brows," as would be consistent with his new role but not with
his expansiveness. The final contrast with his letter to Wilson lies in the fact
that while the previous name dropping was intended to show solidarity, in
the current name dropping, e. e. cummings is mentioned as an instance of
someone Hemingway plans to surpass in terms of financial success, at least,
if not in terms of artistic quality.
Hemingway's letter to Liveright certainly illustrates how an expansive
personality is inclined to a very low degree of collaboration. Taken literally,
Hemingway's epistle in fact denies that the collaboration would consist of

anything except the publisher and editor accepting the work exactly as the
author submits it. The case made for the claims is, as we saw, totally
unbelievable, but it is fully in keeping with Hemingway's expansiveness that
he feels no sense of this nor a need to present more elaborate, convincing or
illustrated arguments. In regard to the financial side, however, his letter to
Perkins shows that he is quite capable of separating artistic collaboration
from financial collaboration, no doubt because being accommodating on the
business side does not threaten his expansive traits as a literary artist.
Indeed, having broken a contract might be a certain advantage in suggesting
to a prospective editor that it might well be dangerous to antagonize an
author who is not scrupulous about going elsewhere. So even Hemingway's
brash behavior would have strategic merit, making it, if not more forgivable,
at least more understandable. But we have to wonder whether Hemingway's
reaction to Liveright would have been quite so dogmatic had he not felt
particularly vulnerable at that time in not having an established reputation
that would in any way justify the absoluteness of his claims to expertise, and
even if he had not received the letters from Perkins, he would have heard by
the grapevine that Scribner's was interested and that a pretext for breaking
a contract based on literary judgment might soon be welcome. At all events,
the censorship issue was to become Hemingway's official story about the
contract episode so that he could breezily cable to Louis and Mary Bromfield,
ca. March 8, 1926, referring to Torrents of Spring.


[4.1]Max Perkins read it and thought it was grand and not at all
censorable as Scott had cabled him and I agreed to let them have
Torrents and The Sun Also Rises. (Baker, 1981, pp. 194-195)

This makes it sound like being "grand" and not censorable are
intimately linked, showing Hemingway's own wisdom in including things
others might have thought were censorable, and, of course, Perkins' good
taste in appreciating "the grandness" of it all. This formulation makes it
seem like Hemingway equated "grand" with "not censorable," particularly
given final impulse in the choice of publisher.
The expectation that Hemingway's correspondence with Boni and
Liveright might foreshadow the kind of interactions he will have with
Perkins at Scribner's can be established with the letter to Perkins dated July
24, 1926.


[5.1]Thanks so much for sending me the Adventures of a Younger Son
[by E.J. Trelawny]. [5.2]I haven't received it yet but look forward to it
with great anticipation.
[5.3]I imagine we are in accord about the use of certain words and I
never use a word without first considering if it is replaceable. [5.4]But
in the proof I will go over it all very carefully. [5.5]I have thought of
one place where Mike when drunk and wanting to insult the bull
fighter keeps saying--tell him bulls have no balls. [5.6]That can be
changed--and I believe with no appreciable loss to--bulls have no
horns. [5.7]But in the matter of the use of the word Bitch by Brett--I
have never once used this word ornamentally nor except when it was
absolutely necessary and I believe the few places where it is used must
stand. [5.8]The whole problem is, it seems, that one should never use
words which shock altogether out of their own value or connotation--
such a word as for instance fart would stand out on a page, unless the
whole matter were entirely rabelaisian, in such a manner that it would
be entirely exaggerated and false and overdone in emphasis.
[5.9]Granted that it is a very old and classic English word for a
breaking of wind. [5.10]But you cannot use it. [5.11]Altho I can think
of a case where it might be used, under sufficiently tragic
circumstances, as to be entirely acceptable. [5.12]In a certain incident
in the war of conversation among marching troops under shell fire.
[5.13]I think that words--and I will cut anything I can--that are used
in conversation in The Sun etc. are justified by the tragedy of the

story. [5.14]But of course I haven't seen it for some time and not at all
in type.
[5.15]The reason I haven't sent any more stories to the magazine is
because Scott was so sure that it would buy anything that was
publishable that my hopes got very high and after I'd tried both a long
and a short story--and I suppose the stories aren't pleasant--and both
were not publishable it made me feel very discouraged; as I had
counted on that as a certain source of income, and I suppose I have
been foolish not to copy out more stories and send them. [5.16]But I
will when we get back to Paris the 10th of August. [5.17]As yet no
proofs have arrived.
[5.18]I plan to go over The Sun etc. in Paris very carefully. [5.19]By
what date should you have the proofs returned?
[5.20]As for our returning in the fall--the financial situation is so
rotten--it being very tenuous and easily affected by whooping cough
and the necessity of the Riviera and one thing and another--that I can
see no prospect of it although I had hoped and counted on it
tremendously. [5.21]In several ways I have been long enough in
[5.22]How did the Torrents go?
[5.23]The Guaranty Trust is always a permanent address.
[5.24]I hope you have been having a good summer. [5.25]Spain is
very dusty and hot but much the best country left in Europe. (Baker,
1981, pp. 211-212)
The discourse move of requesting free books from one's editors and

agents was highly characteristic of the period, and could reasonably be

counted a business expense in the sense that a contemporary author does

indeed need to know what colleagues are up to. How far this need might

correspond to the need for literary reputation claimed on the basis of being a
unique talent is a delicate matter. As we have seen, the tendency of
expansive writers like Hemingway is to claim uniqueness of the text itself in

the sense that every word has to be just what it is and nothing changed. This

implies that the author is the only one who knows this, and is therefore
unique at least in that sense, though, as we have also seen, the arguments
Hemingway makes along this line are a bit shaky and peremptory, to say the


Hemingway's position regarding changes in the manuscript is
consistent with the one expressed to Liveright, but more reasoned and
flexible. Again he makes an absolute claim for every word, which strains
credulity, for no one would consider whether to replace words like "the" or
"in," for example. Certainly, he doesn't spend this much care either in
writing letters such as Sample 1, or when he is speaking. What Hemingway
evidently means is that he has considered the replaceability of conspicuous
words that finicky readers might genuinely want to have replaced. Not
surprisingly, potential obscenities are again the test case. Hemingway's
insistence that they are "absolutely necessary" [5.7] might be amusing if the
alternative is to admit that he uses them merely as signals of his own macho
self-image. Also a bit arcane is the idea that obscenities might be "justified
by the tragedy of the story" [5.13], not merely because he takes it for granted
that the story has succeeded in being truly "tragic," but because the everyday
use of obscenities surely reflects minor irritation and petty insults much
more than "tragic circumstances" [5.11]. Hemingway must be aware that
obscenities are going to have a different effect "in type," especially if you
want to be "praised by high brows," but if the mere passage from
conversation into type suffices to make the obscenities appear "exaggerated
and false and overdone" [5.8], then the argument that they are "absolutely
necessary" is severely weakened--unless what Hemingway is really
interested in is, in fact, "shocking" readers in order to get public attention.
Another indication of a more conciliatory tone toward Perkins than
toward Boni and Liveright can be seen in the typical authorial discourse
move of promising to "go over it all very carefully" before actual publication
[5.5]. Hemingway promises this first directly in the context of potential
"replacements" [5.3], but feels that he must devote a separate paragraph to it

further on [5.18], where the issue is the timing of "proofs." Instead of saying
that they should be sent "as soon as possible," he is merely content to note
that they have not yet "arrived" [5.17].
Predictably enough, a good bit of the letter is devoted to seemingly
incidental personal details, in part his financial stress. In regard to "the
magazine," Hemingway portrays himself as hard working but unrewarded.
(The stories weren't bad, but simply "not pleasant.") Further on, the
"financial situation" [5.20] is made the backdrop for gossip about "whooping
cough" and visiting the "Riviera," an area which has never been within the
comfortable price range of struggling artists. Taken together, the web of
references to money could hardly fail to be an encouragement to Perkins to
advance some money from anticipated sales of the work whose "proofs"
Hemingway is so diligently promising to "go over"--the more so if Perkins
might want to have Hemingway come back to America, where it might be
easier to keep an eye on him and his work. The reference to living in "much
the best country left in Europe" [5.25], hot and dusty Spain, calls to mind
Hemingway's previous hint about what it costs to go there, and here, too,
money changing hands may well be behind what otherwise would be colorful
gossip. Of course, an expansive type like Hemingway might well believe that
he merely is being chatty and informative rather than pursuing ulterior
motives; or that dropping hints about financial assistance is a natural
prerogative about which one need not be in any way self-conscious. As in the
letter to Liveright, there is a certain disjunction here between large claims
for literary quality and very specific claims about individual words and
expressions. The disjunction is, however, forcefully suppressed by the quasi-
formalist insistence that every word absolutely has to be just what and where
it is. This sort of suppression is precisely what Hemingway needs to create a

continuing context of interaction with his editor, wherein every request for a
change is a candidate for lowering artistic quality. It was only a small step to
expanding this argument to critics and reviewers of all kinds whenever they
suggest that anything is not precisely as it should be. It is worth noting in
this regard the pervasive link between the formalism that insists on
scrupulous detail and the generally authoritarian attitude toward language
and literature as pointed out by Beaugrande in his present work in progress:
A New Introduction to the Study of Text and Discourse. The appearance of

precision, objectivity, necessity and so on, created by formalist tactics
routinely turns out to be a means of repressing controversy over issues

which, given the nature of literature as "alternativity," surely ought to be

Hemingway's expansiveness hits full stride in a subsequent letter

(August 21, 1926) ostensibly concerned with the details of proofs but in fact
devoted largely to Hemingway's relish over his rising reputation.


[6.1]The proofs came ten days ago while we were at the Cap D'Antibes
on our way home from Spain and I have been over them very carefully
with the points you outlined in mind.
[6.2]lst--I have commenced with Cohn. [6.3]I believe the book loses by
eliminating this first part but it would have been pointless to include it
with the Belloc eliminated--and I think that would be altogether
pointless with Belloc's name out.
[6.4]2nd--Roger Prescott is now Roger Prentiss. [6.5]I believe I went to
school with a Roger Prentiss but as least he was not Glenway
[6.6]3rd--Hergesheimer now changed to something else.
[6.7]4th--Henry James now called either Henry or Whatsisname--
whichever seems best to you.
[6.8]5th--I do not believe that the blanks left in the Irony and pity song
can be objectionable--anybody knowing what words to put in might as
well put them in. [6.9]In case they are offensive the word "pretty" can
be inserted.

[6.10]6th--The bulls now without appendages.
[6.11]I've tried to reduce profanity but I reduced so much profanity
when writing the book that I'm afraid not much could come out.
[6.12]Perhaps we will have to consider it simply as a profane book and
hope that the next book will be less profane or perhaps more sacred.
[6.13]In today's mail there is an invitation to broadcast Torrents of
Spring from the Sears Roebuck radio station W L S accompanied by a
short talk and the information that "it gives common people a real
thrill, to be remembered always, to hear the voice of a well known,
admired author." [6.14](And who do you think that would be?)
[6.15]The other letter was from the Missouri Historical Society asking
for a copy of Torrents to be preserved along with the most complete
collection of the books of all Missouri authors, which it seems a very
strange thing to suddenly be.
[6.16]In this same mail I am sending you a story--The Killers--which
has been typed by the well known, admired author himself on a six
year old Corona. [6.17]So if the magazine does not want it you might
send it to the Sears Roebuck broadcasting station care of Mr. John M.
Stahl and maybe he would like to have it to show to a lot of the
common people.
[6.18]I also find, in yesterday's mail, that I owe Henry Romeike, Inc.
220 West 19th Street, N.Y., sixteen dollars for clippings, and as I have
no dollars and Mr. Romeike, who is I believe by his own admittance
the original Romeike, is very lovely about sending clippings, I wonder
if you could have this sixteen dollars sent to him and charged to what
must be rapidly becoming my account. [6.19]If this were done it might
be well to tell Mr. the original Romeike that the money is coming from
me and that he may continue to send clippings to the same place.
[6.20] Zelda was looking very well and very lovely when I saw her last
week. [6.21]Scott was working hard. [6.22]Don Stewart has arrived
with a very new and awfully nice and good looking wife. [6.23]I hope
you've had a good summer. [6.24]We had a grand time in Spain.
[6.25]I'm working very hard now--plan to mail the proofs the end of the
week and will send another story. (Baker, 1981, pp. 213-214)
As usual, Hemingway jumps into business instantly, in this case with
his standard assurance of going over proofs "very carefully," as he did in
Sample 5. None of the changes he mentions are in any way substantive
unless a significant "first part" has been "eliminated," the main issue being
the names of characters versus the names of real people, and, of course, the
thematic obscenity, or, as he now calls them, "profanities" [6.11]. As before,

Hemingway is willing to concede some minor points while professing his
overall incapacity to go any further in this direction. He was no doubt aware
that by picking on the idea of "blanks," being "objectionable," he was giving
Perkins good reasons for feeling a trifle petty, the more so since the practice
has an eminent tradition, appearing even in some editions of Goethe's
"Faust." A trace of sarcasm can also be detected in the playful idea of
Hemingway writing a book that could in any sense be called "sacred," which
derails the profanity charge by falling back on a very different sense of the
word "profane" [6.11] (a mighty good reason to switch from the term
"obscene"). With this out of the way, and doubtless to increase its force by

showing how seriously Hemingway ought to be taken, we get some gossip
whose expansiveness is so frank that a less self-centered author might feel it
a bit "exaggerated and false and overdone" [5.8]. Rather than merely
informing Perkins that he has been invited to make a radio broadcast,
Hemingway is careful to include the smarm that accompanied the request,
followed by a coquettish question in parentheses, which would certainly seem
to be an instance of using words that are in no sense absolutely necessary.
Hemingway is plainly less delighted at the "Missouri author," since the
historical society has not singled him out for an honor but merely included
him on grounds of "completeness" [6.15]. In the next paragraph, Hemingway
has already expropriated the smarm from Sears Roebuck to refer to himself,
in the third person, in a context which suggests that a "well-known admired
author" ought to have a new typewriter and a secretary for typing--at least it
is very easy to read the passage in this sense. In the same way Hemingway
might do well to consider the high opinion of the "Sears Roebuck
broadcasting station," along with the multitude of "common people" [6.13], a
phrase that would be astonishing if it were not a direct quote from Sears. In

terms of personality traits, Hemingway seems to have shifted gears
somewhat away from the perfectionist subtype of expansiveness invoked in
his claims about tending to every word over to a narcissistic subtype of
basking in his idealized self.
And if money simply could not be admitted, and since the radio

broadcast puts Hemingway in a good position to ask for reward, the letter
abruptly downshifts from large concerns to quite small ones. (Albeit $16.00
could buy a lot in 1926.) Apparently this seemingly minor thrust offers the
crucial pretext for setting out "my account" of money spent by Scribner's on
Hemingway and his debts prior to getting profit from his books. Hence the
small request sets a large precedent, and one wonders if Perkins' hand
trembled when he sent off those sixteen dollars. Only when all this is out of
the way do we get some relatively unconstrained gossip without ulterior
motives, other than, of course, to mention, as if it were confidential
information, that Hemingway, along with Fitzgerald, is "working very hard."
The wives, in contrast, are praised only in respect to their looks, and not, say,
in supporting the work of their husband, let alone doing important work of
their own. The name dropping of authors like "Scott" has its usual function,
while the names of wives are a bit more indirect in suggesting Hemingway's
close friendship through the husbands. The final touch, promising "another
story," should be the ultimate thrust to get Perkins busy setting up an
"account" for his certified "well known admired author," and maybe getting
him a typist and a new Corona [6.11] .

Discourse Moves Away from Expansiveness

The discourse moves we examined so far give fairly firm evidence for
expansive tendencies. But since real people are not merely reincarnations of
psychological types, we cannot expect to find great uniformity or consistency
in this regard. During the process of getting through the proofs, we find
Hemingway writing to Perkins on August 26, 1926, that he "doesn't care
what happens" as long as the words are not changed. This sounds like a
merger of detached strategy with the perfectionist one, which certainly seems
significantly less expansive. In fact, a letter of November 16, 1926, shows
Hemingway resisting changes in his work with a somewhat unaccustomed
self-effacing strategy.


[7.1]I wish that I could do as you suggest about inserting some of the
matter about Brett. [7.2]It doubtless would be of value to anyone
reading the stuff for the first time and there is some very good dope on
Brett. [7.3]0n the other hand any sort of a foreword or preface would
seem to me to break up the unity of the book and altho it does not
show there is a certain rhythm in all that book that if it were broken
would be very much missed. [7.4]It was a complete unit with all that
first stuff including the Belloc episode--I could cut it where I did and
have it stay a unit--but the hard luck we had with Fifty Grand shows
the difficulty of cutting that sort of stuff and further tinkering
wouldn't help, I'm afraid.
[7.5]I am terribly sorry because I would like very much to do it for you
but I think we'll find maybe, in the end, that what I lose by not
compromising now we may all cash in on later. [7.6]I know that you
would not ask me to put that back in unless you really liked it and I
know it would be good in many ways--but I think in the end perhaps
we would both lose by it. [7.7]You see I would like, if you wanted, to
write books for Scribner's to publish, for many years and would like
them to be good books--better all the time--sometimes they might not
be so good--but as well as I could write and perhaps with luck learning
to write better all the time--and learning how things work and what

the whole thing is about--and not getting bitter. [7.8]So if this one
doesn't sell maybe sometime one will. [7.9]I'm very sure one will if
they really are good--and if I learn to make them a lot better--but I'll
never be able to do that and will just get caught in the machine if I
start worrying about that--or considering it the selling. [7.10]Altho
God knows I need the money at this present time and I would so like to
see the book really go because you have been so very decent to me.
(Baker, 1981, pp. 223-224)
Perkins had evidently pressed in this case not for a deletion but an
"insertion" [7.1]. Hemingway's opening words already indicate that this
initiative, too, is not going to succeed, though in the context of a seemingly
ambivalent but actually insincere "wish" to comply, the grounds for refusal
this time are not so much a formalist insistence on every single word being
exactly what it should be, but large and big allusions to "the unity of the
book" and its "rhythm" that must not be "broken," though he does continue
the conciliatory, less expansive tone initiated in his relationship with Perkins
in Sample 2 by conceding that "I could cut it" and not have the prose wrecked
beyond editorial acceptance. In light of what we have seen of Hemingway's
comments on why his prose cannot be changed, it is a trifle amusing that this
"rhythm" "does not show," and yet would be "very much missed." That is, its
absence would show up very visibly--a neat paradox, whose shakiness a less
expansive author might well have sensed. More cogent is Hemingway's
warning, which attributes the "hard luck" [7.4] of another piece to its having
been "cut" rather than not having been terribly well-written in the first place
and lacking that invisible something he is pleased to call rhythm.
It might seem that the matter would be settled there, but instead we
get another paragraph which is a textbook exercise in protesting too much to
assuage feelings of having been rather selfish and unfair after all toward
someone who certainly deserves the opposite. A show of modesty regarding
his own talents can only be called compulsive in the Horneyan sense with a

vastly expansive personality attempting without much conviction or grace
the path for self-effacing. It is not merely that had Hemingway really been
"terribly sorry" and had he really "very much liked" [7.5] to make the change,
he would have only had to do so. Instead, he backs off radically from his
typical claims, seen in Sample 3, of having always carefully considered and
selected exactly the right word. Instead, he concedes what Perkins must have
known very well anyway, namely that Hemingway was still in the midst of
learning how to write, so that logically, at least, his earlier protestations of
expertise can now be reinterpreted as arrogations stemming from insecurity
and anxiety. It can hardly be a coincidence that Hemingway's writing style
was notorious for its lack of ornamentation or any verbiage that might, by his
own standards, appear surplus or unnecessary. On the contrary, Hemingway
must have realized fairly early on that writing this way was his best defense
against being overshadowed by the great novelists of the nineteenth century
while at the same time setting himself apart from many of his
contemporaries, at least until the point when (as happened in post-war
German literature) they would begin imitating him. His new-found humility
sits on him very uncomfortably; the coherence of his protestations suffers as
a result. The thrust of the argument is that Hemingway must be allowed to
go his own way and not pressured to "compromise."
He predicts he will be able to develop on his own, to "write books for
Scribner's" that are not merely "good books," but "better all the time" [7.7].
But from this argument it should follow that the deciding factor will be
Hemingway's own self-determination and not, as suggested some lines after,
"luck." Nor is the argument consistent with the speculation that part of the
time Hemingway's books "might not be so good," which requires him getting
worse rather than better, at least temporarily. Perhaps the most ill-suited

gesture of self-effacement is the suggestion that he would be content to wait
patiently until, "sometime" when his books will sell [7.8]. And, of course,
there is a fantastical quality for an author who vows to consider every word
to concede that he has not yet learned "how things work and what the whole
thing is about" [7.7]. Much more in character is Hemingway's closing
reference to the money he needs which requires that "the book really go"
[7.10], right after he has acted the role of someone waiting for some future
"sometime." This is a far cry from the gambling metaphor he used earlier in
Sample 3 as he speculated about the chances of a book selling, though the
phrase "cash in on later" has a similar substance, however inappropriate
such a "later" is for the impatient, hurrying Hemingway. One can imagine
Perkins, upon reading this paragraph, heaving a sigh of such force as to blow
all the papers off his desk.
A more characteristic and consistent self-effacing tendency can be

found in the interview with Enid Shomer, where the discourse move
contrasts quite strikingly with Hemingway's.

[8.1]I think our government is encouraging censorship [.. .] by the
NEA [.. .] let's see what else do I want to say about that? [8.2]Well, I
think it's deadly for a society not to let its artists be critics. [8.3]The
artists must have a role. [8.4]I don't mean that you have to do political
art, but you're going to be questioning the culture, because basically
artists are people who observe with a clipboard and they tell you what
they see. (Shomer, 1989, p. 10)
The first person appears only when she is framing the discourse as

what she "thinks" [8.1], "wants to say" [8.2], and "means" [8.4]. There are no
first persons putting her in the role of doing all of this herself, let alone
arrogating the kind of absolute judgment that Hemingway claimed. Instead
the second person intrudes at the moment an agent is needed to "do art" and

to "question the culture." This is followed by the third person "they" [8.4],
while the second person is shifted over to the public. Slipping in also is the
use of the plural in artists, which again dilutes the force of the individual
These shifts in persons and agents are significant in the context
whereby Shomer completely dissolves the individual artist such as seen in
traditional cliches of the inspired outsider, into the broad social context and
the function that artists should have in it. As such, the artists have the role
of people compelled to tell the truth, however unpleasant it might be for
other people to hear it. Faint echoes of vindictiveness and perfectionism
might be detected here, in the sense that an author in a hostile political
situation of threatening censorship is that much more obliged to get back by
telling society unpleasant truths and sparing no detail of the reality. In
place of talent or genius, the artists' prime gift is "observation" [8.4]. The
reward of the audience is not aesthetic pleasure or escapist entertainment,
but the privilege of being told quite frankly what the artists see straight as it
comes from the "clipboard" [8.4]. The term "critic" has an association with
critique, a higher intellectual form of expression with philosophical
overtones, yet there is nothing particularly glamorous in Shomer's
characterization of the role. The initiative is partly from society in any case,
and in this context the recent initiatives by Republican presidencies to
dismantle the National Endowment for the Arts on the pretext that the
projects it is financing are obscene are part of a more broadly conceived
"cultural war" (a phrase repeated in Pat Buchanan's keynote speech at the

1992 Republican Convention) against intellectuals and creative thinkers
throughout the entire society who were, quite rightly, suspected of not
sharing the Republican image of what society should be in America. And for

any of its many victims both at home and abroad, a term like "deadly" [8.2] is
no great exaggeration.
In sum, Shomer's vision of the artist emphasizes the obligation to

serve society rather than to build one's own reputation and to stay true to
one's personal idiom. Her argument could, however, be used as grounds to
oppose changes demanded by editors who argue that certain passages might
be offensive. Shomer makes it plain that people's feelings will be hurt at
some time; if so, editors must take care unless they do the work of "the
government" in abridging the freedom of artists and possibly even imposing
"censorship." The absence of the social imperative in Hemingway's reasoning
accords with his expansive temperament, even though the content of some of
his work is counter-social, even political criticism (e.g., of the situation in

Spain during the Civil War). I doubt, however, that today's Republicans
would find it particularly offensive, considering their own commitment to
macho imagery and a tendency to consider violence in the entertainment
industry as good, clean fun.
We can complement our perspective by looking at an intermediary
personality type, Christy Sanford, whose expansive tendencies are very
clearly a reaction against the self-effacing role current American society,

particularly in the Southeast, is trying to impose or reimpose on women.
Sanford's expansiveness markedly tends toward the narcissistic subtype.

Her poetry is notable for its consistent, not to say insistent, foregrounding of
female sexuality literally in action. Her interview produced the following


[9.1]A lot of time the sex is only a part of the piece and maybe only a
quarter and you don't want to eliminate that part of your life. [9.2]I

think it's really essential that that be included in spite of the Jesse
Helms mentality that's overtaking our country. [9.3]That goes back to
the puritanical thing [ .] he's not interested in artists who want to
portray a full-bodied human being and human-beingness is something
we can't afford to eliminate as artists. [9.4]It's something you have to
deal with. [9.5]It's part of being an artist. (Sanford, 1989, p. 30)
The expansive side comes through in the argument that sex is the
prerogative directly connected to being "a full-bodied human being" who
refuses to "eliminate that part of your life" [9.3]. In contrast to Shomer, she
sees the repressive Republican government and one of its most absurd
standard bearers, Senator Jesse Helms, who continually introduces bills to
ban abortion, shut down the National Endowment for the Arts, force religious
instruction into the schools, and so on, not so much as a political thrust but
as an invasion of the personal sphere, including Sanford's own. This
translates into a demand to "eliminate a part of your life," so that the concept
of artistic integrity is implicated here in the concept of existential integrity.
To deny sex is to excise "a part of the piece," both in the work of art and in
the fabric of life. In that sense, it is not merely "part of being an artist" [9.5],
but part of being human at all. Like Shomer's socially committed artist,
Sanford's artist has a representative and symbolic role which nonetheless
remains firmly in the context of human life.
A considerably more complex case appears to apply to Harry Crews;
whereas his dominant strategy is obviously expansive, he nevertheless
vacillates between the arrogant-vindictive and the perfectionist, and there is
a self-effacing streak at times subsisting in a curious symbiosis with
The data first signalled this turn in a context where Crews was
discussing his irritation with an editor who "didn't want me to write a word
like 'shit' in that book, and certain other words." The editor had argued,

according to Crews, that this is necessary not to "pollute such a work as that
with words which our culture has come to hold under the same umbrella, the
umbrella of obscenity." At least in Crews' rendition, the editor's request
sounds like an exercise in self-irony in the context of a culture in which
pollution of a very different sort is reaching crisis proportions. The metaphor
of the umbrella is no less ironic, however unconsciously so, in that the editor
appears to be imitating an umbrella to ward off from the readers being pelted
with "shit."
Crews went on to expand on the relationship between authors and
mediators in terms with a definite arrogant-vindictive cast.


[10.1]God it pisses me off. [10.2]There is, any writer that would be
truthful would be quick to tell you, there is an adversarial position
between the writer on the one hand and the
editor/publisher/typesetter/proofreader, all of that other army of
support on the other hand. [10.3]You want to do one thing over here
and they have agreed amongst themselves to do it another way.
(Crews, 1990b, p. 8)
Crews purports to speak for any writer that would be "truthful," which
might remind us of Shomer's vision of the artist as an accurate observer, but
the truth in this case applies to the "positions" [10.2] of authors and
mediators. As we recall from Chapter 1, the arrogant-vindictive type justifies
all of his aggressions and his needs for triumph on the pretext of having been
previously subjected to unfairness and indignities, and is extremely prone to
make this assumption on the slightest evidence. We see this clearly in
Sample 10 in that the writer faces an entire "army" single-handed, including
not merely the "editor" and "publisher," but even the "typesetter" and
"proofreader," even though it is hard to see how the two last could
conceivably make formidable adversaries, given that they are strictly bound

by their contracts to the types of interventions they can make, and these do
not include editorial changes. What these people in the "army" have, in fact,
"agreed amongst themselves to do" departs from what the writer "wants to
do" [10.3] precisely to the degree that production and marketing of written
artifacts as commodities is not identical with the original process of creating
and working them out.
Crews' portrayal plainly implies that collaboration between authors
and mediators will be more often than not uncomfortable and contentious
because the two sides are in principle engaged in completely different
ventures. This applies a blanket pretext for adversarial stances regarding
any disagreements about changes without the necessity of arguing, as
Hemingway did, that this particular artist has expended the utmost care in
the formulation of this particular work. We recall Hemingway's argument
was essentially that the work had a wholeness or integrity that would be
materially damaged by alterations or omissions. To pursue this further, I
questioned Crews about his own views on the concept of integrity and
obtained the following response.


[11.1]It's an awfully big word, integrity, you know, and it has a
pompous ring to it because the world has changed it into kind of a buzz
word, but things either do have integrity or they don't. [11.2]And a
book is of a piece. [11.3]Whatever is there belongs there. [11.4]Or it
doesn't. [11.5]And if you believe it belongs there and you let
somebody force you, literally against every sort of judgment that you
have, notions that you have about what you've got, you let somebody
force you, then you ought to be doing something else. (Crews, 1990b,
pp. 33-34)
His argument echoes Hemingway's, though without claiming the
scrupulous exactness of word choice that Hemingway did. Yet he is just as
absolute as Hemingway in drawing a clean line of separation, with integrity

on the one side and "something else on the other," which is the product of a
person who should not be a "truthful writer." The adversarial assignment of
roles we saw in the previous passage returns when Crews attributes the loss
of integrity to "letting somebody force you literally against every sort of
judgment that you have" [11.5], of taking out something "you believe belongs
there." The betrayal of self, Crews suggests, is so severe that one should
change into another profession. Crews' own editor came up in the same


[12.1]So, I had to, in effect, in my dealings with Ann Patty to say,
[12.2]'Look, I understand what you want here. [12.3]I understand
what you said. [12.4]But you're wrong. [12.5]And I'm right.
[12.6]And I would hope that you would trust my instincts enough to let
the book be published, go to press, in this form.' (Crews, 1990b, p. 16)
Crews reproduces what purports to be a direct quotation of his

correspondence with Ann Patty. Though it may not be an accurate version, it
counts as data from the author, though with the added reservation that
unlike Hemingway's letters, Crews has an immediate sense of portraying the
relationship to an audience.
The adversarial viewpoint expressed in Sample 10 is much in evidence

here. One side is simply "wrong" [12.4]; the other side is simply "right"

[12.5]. Crews did not, like Hemingway, offer effusive apologies or claims that
he wished he could comply. Instead of appealing to some formalist or
perfectionist skill, Crews has the more visceral appeal to "instincts" instead
of speculating about success chances. He seems to have found his own
peculiar combination of vindictiveness and perfectionism, each of them
nourishing the other: the work is perfect in itself, and aggressive authors are
entitled to wreak vengeance on readers who do not recognize this. Homey

notes in this connection that it is typical of the arrogant-vindictive type to
divide the entire world between one's self and one's supposed adversaries,
which can make it rather difficult to engage in collaborative projects.
However, Crews' vindictiveness seems to be focused on the representatives of
the publishing industry. If he is sincere, then he has inclinations, as we will
see in Sample 16, to show support for other authors by bringing them to the
attention of the editors he knows in New York City, but as we shall see later
on, vindictive traits surface very readily in regard to literary critics and book
reviewers. In return, some of the interview data indicated that his
relationship to his editor, Ann Patty, is not so confrontational as the samples
we have seen make it sound.
In applications of personality theory, it is important to be careful about
making causal attributions of the kind that have led to some discomfort
about Freudian psychoanalysis in which specific biographical events of the
childhood become the direct causes of neuroses in adulthood. It is therefore
not a matter of asserting that specific personality trends compel authors or
mediators to communicate in certain ways, nor that adoption of specific
discourse strategies entrenches and reinforces personality traits. There
seems to be an interaction in which certain personality traits make certain
discourse moves more likely to be managed in one way than another and that
these moves, in turn, can constitute a pattern or routine an author or
mediator will adopt when there are not cogent motives to do otherwise. Like
Freudian psychology, we are obliged to assemble evidence from sources, some
more direct and some more indirect. In the case of authors, we do after all
have their literary works, which give ample evidence of expansiveness to
corroborate our hypotheses based on the data we have examined here. Given
Hemingway's interest in hunting and gambling in his works, we are not

surprised when his expansive treatment of his editors falls back on

metaphors from these areas. Similarly, given Crews' preoccupation with

bodily violence, it is hardly surprising to hear him produce as a metaphor for

the craft of writing an actual fight in the July 7 interview.


[13.1]Because--it's just like the first few rounds in many fights--after
you get hit the first five really good shots, then you don't really feel the
punches anymore. [13.2]I mean, blood can pour off you like rain and
you don't feel them anymore... [13.3]But you don't feel anything.
That's the ... working day for a writer. (Crews, 1990b, p. 13)

This portrayal of "the working day of a writer" would probably

astonish a host of writers whose reputations are considerably less

disputatious than Crews'. It becomes coherent only if we suppose a

fundamentally adversarial and persecuted role for the writer, who then

survives only because he has lost his sensitivity to continued indignities, and

blows of outrageous fortune.'

Translated into terms of literary interaction, we might expect a writer

with strategies like Crews' to do what Hemingway did, but for different

reasons, namely to simply break off the contract if the editor does not give in.
As we saw, Hemingway was able to channel his expansiveness such that he

could apply it to his authorial role much more promptly than to his business

role. Breaking his contract with Liveright, while indicative of an expansive

tendency, made good business sense, as compared to breaking off a contract

'In a personal communication regarding the discourse analysis of violence in
language, Beaugrande helped me draw some parallels between the literary and
literal lives of writers like Crews. For instance, the adversarial stance Crews
supposes in Sample 10 is analogous to his legendary anecdotal willingness to engage
in barroom brawls where he takes on all comers, making for daunting odds while
creating the underdog position he assumes as both writer and fighter.

when no other publisher is on the horizon. Some of the data indicated that
for Crews this final step is more of a fantasy.


[14.1]While I didn't say it to her, I was perfectly willing to say,
[14.2]"Well, we'll tear up this contract, try to sell it to somebody else.
[14.3]Whatever money they give me, I'll give to you. [14.4]If it doesn't
cover what you gave me, then I'm in debt to you that much until I
make it back it writing." (Crews, 1990b, p. 16)
Here he describes his inward vision of breaking a contract, and,
curiously, instead of discoursing on the obligations of the artist or the
perfection of the work, the key concern here is money. Like Fitzgerald and
Hemingway, Crews evidently lives on money he has not yet earned and so
occasionally lapses into discourse moves fraught with the terminology of
banking and commerce. An ultimatum that is never delivered is a curious
discourse move, though doubtless common enough in everyday interactions
with people whom we' would like to threaten more severely than we dare to
do, especially when we owe them money.

Expansive Solidarity

A further reminder that authors are not incarnations of specific
personality types can be seen in a discourse move whose expansiveness is
much more "allocentric" which is Homey's term for the ability to adopt a
perspective of other people, as opposed to "autocentric" which refers to the
genuine self-centered egotist. Authors whose expansiveness can take the
forms of perfectionism, narcissism and arrogant-vindictiveness, as we shall
see, are quite capable of setting self-interest aside to meet their needs for
supporting other authors, particularly ones whose reputations have not yet
been established. The apparent contradiction here might be resolved in

several ways. The successful author may see the unsuccessful one's vicarious
representations of the self so that their show of support has a symbolic other-
directed component, or they may see an interest in solidifying the group of
authors as a whole in order to gain leverage against possible opposing forces,
including not just an unappreciative society, but publishers who might exert
pressure. Or, again, the show of support might be part of the program for
meeting the need of a literary reputation, namely that a recognized author is
both sufficiently discerning and sufficiently at the center of things to spot
new talent without the trappings of success. And finally, there is always the
prospect that the authors one helps will later be in a position to help you.
The authorial need of literary authors to support other authors, as we
noted in the first section, is somewhat different from the needs for literary
reputation and successful publication. Here the motive is closer to altruism
and solidarity; but, of course, such support creates a need for reciprocity at
some future time when those other authors may be in a better position to give
it, as proved to be the case when Ezra Pound supported T. S. Eliot's efforts
and then was later rescued from disgrace and obscurity by Eliot's advocacy
after World War II. In Hemingway's case, he was the beneficiary of such
support from Gertrude Stein and later from F. Scott Fitzgerald, who was
already established. The discourse moves of showing support, whatever the
motivations, are at least fairly easy to recognize, as we can see in this letter
by Fitzgerald, dated October 10, 1924, as Fitzgerald brings the then
relatively unknown Hemingway to the attention of the editor Maxwell


[15.1]The royalty was better than I'd expected. [15.2]This is to tell you
about a young man named Ernest Hemmingway, who lives in Paris,

(an American) writes for the transatlantic Review & has a brilliant
future. [15.3]Ezra Pount published a collection of his short pieces in
Paris, at some place like the Egotist Press. [15.4]I haven't it hear now
but its remarkable & I'd look him up right away. [15.5]He's the real
[15.6]My novel goes to you with a long letter within five days.
[15.7]Ring arrives in a week. [15.8]This is just a hurried scrawl as I'm
working like a dog. [15.9]I thought Stalling's book was disappointingly
rotten. [15.10]It takes a genius to whine appealingly. [15.11]Have
tried to see Struthers Burt but he's been on the move. [15.12]More
[15.13]P.S. Important. What chance has a smart young frenchman
with an intimate knowledge of French literature in the bookselling
business in New York. [15.14]Is a clerk paid much and is there any
opening for one specializing in French literature? [15.15]Do tell me as
there's a young friend of mine here just out of the army who is anxious
to know. (Kuehl & Bryer, 1971, p. 78)
We see the typical discourse moves of dealing with business, in this
case "royalty" [15.1]--money was to be a constant topic in Fitzgerald's
discourse with his mediators. Of course, Fitzgerald does not neglect to point

out that he deserves it all, in view of his "working like a dog" [15.8] so that
his "novel can go to you within five days" [15.6] and Fitzgerald has an

ancillary request that Perkins is to provide information by using personal

connections, as Hemingway did with Wilson in Sample 1, though more work
is certainly implied here for Perkins than Hemingway was requesting from

Wilson. The phrase "this is to tell you" [15.2] should normally be at the very
opening of a letter under the salutation, but Fitzgerald's preoccupation with
money got the first billing; we might expect some thanks here, but as with
Hemingway's opener, none is provided, and we suspect that the real purpose
of the letter was not, in fact, "to tell you about a young man named Ernest
Hemingway" but to assure Perkins that Fitzgerald is appreciative and, of
course, does deserve the money. Yet another similarity with Hemingway's
letter to Wilson, which we read as Sample 1, is the evident haste and

callousness of the writing, including a number of misspellings, right down to
Hemingway's own name and Pound's as well. Fitzgerald doesn't bother to get
the facts straight, such as the exact title of the book or the name of the press,
nor, indeed, does he give Hemingway's address, merely assuming that
Perkins will know how to go about getting it. The final similarity is that
Fitzgerald, like Hemingway, expects the recipient of the correspondence to do
what's proposed in a hurry, as evidenced by phrases such as "right away"
[15.4] and "anxious to know" [15.15]. The irony of Fitzgerald's impatience is
much stronger than Hemingway's because, as we see in [15.6], a chief motive
for the letter is to reassure Perkins about a manuscript that is being
Sample 15, like Sample 1, indicates that the discourse which authors
address to their mediators may be far from simple or straightforward.
Several actions usually occur simultaneously, often in spontaneous mixtures
or alternations, and seemingly minor details may prove to be quite
significant. Moreover, such discourse does give some reliable indicators of
personality type when we consider the kind of contexts that are being
constructed and what sort of actions the correspondents are doing or being
expected to do. In these samples, we can deduce that Hemingway and
Fitzgerald tend to be expansive types, and that their level of cooperation
might be relatively low, even though the two samples in question are not
directly concerned with collaborating on the production of literary works.
Even the apparent altruism of supporting other authors or "specialists in
French literature" [15.14] is a bit double-sided in that the effort it cost
Fitzgerald is minimal, even to the point of not bothering to supply helpful
details and concrete information about Hemingway. Also, Fitzgerald's move
to support Hemingway establishes an air of confidentiality, as if letting

Perkins in on some important secret or up-to-the-minute gossip about the
literary scene. We will be seeing much more of this kind of "shop talk" in the
discourse of authors with their mediators, and doubtless it is strategic to
reassure the mediators that as an author, one is, after all, very much on top
of the latest trends and hottest names. Indeed, keeping up might well be
suggested here as part of the motive to explain why Fitzgerald has evidently
not been as prompt in getting the novel to Perkins as would have been

appropriate--the importance of negotiating timing and deadlines will be
highlighted in the fourth chapter. It is worth remarking, too, that Fitzgerald
would have hardly seen Hemingway as a competitor at that time, since the
two talents and their works were utterly distinct. In any case, Fitzgerald
had strong reasons to be grateful to Perkins, and no form of reciprocation
could surely be more relevant than telling his editor about a "brilliant" but
not yet discovered talent. Fitzgerald provides the highly valuable commodity
at virtually no cost to himself, which is not insignificant in view of the
regularity with which Fitzgerald approached Perkins for sums of money,
which were sometimes quite considerable.
My interview data provided some evidence that Harry Crews, too,
takes pride in showing support for other authors, although the discourse
moves in which he demonstrates this pride are also instrumental in building
his own reputation.


[16.1] When I come across something I recommend it to--if I haven't
worked with them, I know them, damn near every editor in New York.
(Crews, 1990b, p. 25)

We can contrast this with a more self-effacing type, Enid Shomer, who

answered my question about supporting other authors in a decidedly more
altruistic tone.


[17.1]Yeah. [17.2]I think even other writers maybe feel some of that
obligation. [17.3]I do... I feel like there's a real obligation to
encourage people ... I am a kind of a cheerleader, you know.
(Shomer, 1989, pp. 46-48)
This statement in no way attempts to build Shomer's own reputation,

but rather the self-irony of invoking "cheerleading," [17.3] which is an
adolescent function requiring only a loud voice, lots of enthusiasm, and
possibly good looks. Also the term "obligation" occurring twice in the sample
is more typical of the self-effacing than the expansive discourse, particularly

when it comes to the speaker having the obligation to do something rather
than somebody else having to do something for you.
Shomer's account of the capacities for literary discernment involved in

supporting other authors has self-effacing qualities, too.


[18.1]I think you have to--I don't want to say you have to be a genius to
spot genius--but you have to be a working writer, I think, or a very,
very well-read reader either one. Or a very open-minded teacher.
[18.2]Somebody who's constantly working with the language and
really reads a lot, to spot talent. (Shomer, 1989, p. 47)

Shomer immediately disassociates her claims from the concept of
"genius" and replaces it with the much more modest ones of being "a working

writer" or a "very well-read reader" [18.1] both of which are claims she can

reasonably make for herself. Even this modest move is toned down by
proffering the "open-minded teacher" [18.1] who might not, in fact, be
included under the two previous headings. The final category of "constantly

working with the language" [18.2] presumably includes the entire set of
previously suggested qualifications but is characteristically vague. In the
same interview, Shomer expressed her satisfaction when she brought a new
writer to her agent's attention as rewarded by being told "You must be a very
good judge of these things," which she told me she took as a confirmation of
her own abilities as a writer, though her self-effacing tendencies prevented
her from saying so to the agent at the time.
These various samples suggest that even the characteristic discourse
move shared by many authors, namely the support of other authors, assumes
discursive forms peculiar to the several personality types. We are thus in a
position to differentiate both the need to be supportive as such and the other
types of needs that are associated with it in discursive practices. For
Fitzgerald, the show of support was accompanied by a reassurance of
working very hard. For Crews, a show of support was obviously reputation
building. For Shomer, the support was part of her need for mild praise and
indirect recognition as a writer. We would expect the self-effacing type to be
much higher in collaboration than the more expansive types, and we will see
some evidence for this later on.

Living with Expansiveness: The Editor's View

After looking at authors, we can now turn to the editors. To the degree
that authors tend to be expansive, editors would find it advisable to be self-
effacing at least some of the time, simply to avoid conflicts and crowding.
The editor can reserve expansive moves for a time when the author's
expansivity gets out of hand, for instance in refusing all suggestions or
failing to deliver promised works. In Third Force psychology, it is widely

believed that expansive types function well in interaction with self-effacing
types. The advantages for the expansive types are obvious, but Homey also
remarks that the self-effacing types seem to get a vicarious satisfaction by
admiring in other people the expansiveness they powerfully suppress in
themselves (Homey, 1945, p. 220).
We would thus expect initial contacts on the part of publishers to
prefer self-effacing moves, and this is, indeed, what we find with Maxwell
Perkins, whose skill as an editor is eloquently attested to by his skill in
dealing with expansive authors. It would be interesting to have a copy of the
letter he wrote to Hemingway, acting on Fitzgerald's tip, but it is not
included in published correspondence. Still, we can get the flavor from an
unpublished letter he wrote to Lewellyn Powys dated August 24, 1933.


[19.1]Will you allow me to express my admiration for your "Ebony and
Irony?" [19.2]I read the stories in the early spring, beginning in the
languid mood of the "jaded reader,"--but that passed almost in an
instant. [19.3]Black Gods left upon me the strongest impression in the
end--possibly because it stood at the beginning and I read it first.
[19.4]We [this replaces a scored-through "I"] dislike to add to the
importunities of publishers, which are often merely troublesome; but I
wish to have you know of the interest this book has roused in us and of
the pleasure it would give us to hear professionally of any new plans
for fiction, if ever you should care to turn this way.
[19.5]Curiously, I had no idea you were in this country till a few days
ago when I got Van Wyck Brooks to give me your address. (Perkins,
1936, p. 1)
We clearly see the typical strategy of the self-effacing type to express
strong admiration for other people's works, just the reverse of what the
expansive type would do; in fact, Homey sees an intimate connection here.
Editors, of course, have additional reason to know that authors can seldom
hear too much praise of their own work, especially if presented in dramatic

tones (e.g., as a sudden release from a "languid mood" [19.2]). Also, such
praise is the perfectly logical anticipatory move to the editor's soliciting move
for future works. Perkins, in fact, merges the two moves by combining his
request for "new plans for fiction that might come their way" with a renewed
expression of "interest" and "pleasure" [19.4]. Particularly significant
indicators of self-effacement can be seen not merely in expressing "dislike"
about having to be importunatee" and "troublesome" [19.4], but also in
striking "I" and replacing it with "we" [19.4], thereby reducing the apparent
initiative on Perkins' own part, which was clearly connected to first person
pronouns to his reading experience portrayed earlier in the letter. The shift
in pronouns might also suggest that Perkins is expressing his "admiration"
[19.1] in his capacity as a person and an individual reader, while his
business moves reflect his professional role and his solidarity with his
publishing house. We might then understand the shift between the "I"
(personal reader) who "wishes" and the "us" (publishing house) whose
"interest and pleasure" have rather different motivations than merely
reading good literature. There is also a taste of self-effacement in Perkins'
admission of not knowing where the author was, but it is skillfully blended
both with an explanation of why Perkins would not have sought contact
earlier and of a name dropping that could hardly fail to flatter. Even the
word "curious" [19.5] is flattering in suggesting the presence of such a
prominent person in the same country.
This letter makes an interesting comparison to Hemingway's approach
of Edmund Wilson, since in both cases the addressee is a highly respected
literary personage, and again personality types prove revealing. We saw that
Hemingway goes about soliciting reviews with heavy hints, though he stops
short of actually requesting Wilson to write one or to tell other people to do

so. Perkins also makes no direct requests that Powys ought to write
anything, but merely implies that it is reasonable to expect such an action. A
further similarity is the name dropping, although Perkins handles it much
more skillfully, as we saw, in tying it to other discourse moves, whereas
Hemingway is baldly stating that his publisher and the reviewer Stein are to
be considered to be very good. There is not the remotest hint of impatience or
speed in the Perkins letter, whereas Hemingway's letter is heavily charged
with it. Perkins' effusive protestation of admiration is in contrast to
Hemingway, who doesn't express any admiration of Wilson, limiting his

qualities to being "terribly good" on the condition that he does what
Hemingway says, and of course Perkins in no way falls back on a lack of

knowledge or uncertainty about procedure, which we saw Hemingway using
as a move to shift the responsibility for initiative over onto Wilson.
Emblematic of this is the evident care that Perkins has taken composing the
letter, versus the absentmindedness and haste indicated by Hemingway's
(and also by Fitzgerald's) examples in Samples 1 and 15.
Yet in all cases the writer of the letter certainly has excellent motives

to be obliging, admiring and encouraging to the receiver. It seems difficult to
explain the enormous discursive contrasts unless we refer in some way to

contrasting personality types whose influence extends well beyond the
concrete situation in which authors and editors find themselves in their roles

as collaborators in "literary production." Perkins clearly recognizes that a
carefully written and congenial letter can easily be interpreted on the part of
a potential author as a foretaste of the consideration and support the author
can expect throughout the relationship. Hemingway, in contrast, implies
that Wilson should feel rewarded enough at being sent slim volumes of works

by an unknown author and in being instrumental in seeing that positive
reviews are published.
What expansive authors see as "censorship" or violation of their work's
"integrity" naturally looks different from the editor's standpoint. The data
from my interviews with editors indicated that they certainly do not see
themselves as censors as when Barbara Hamby, Christy Sanford's editor,
said that censorship played no part in her job. Joel Weinstein, another editor
introduced by Sanford, elaborated.


[20.1]Censorship is very definitely not a part of what I do. [20.2]I
simply reject material from writers whose ideas I don't agree with.
[20.3]Only once in seventeen years have I suggested to a writer that he
ought to dispose of a poem because of what it contained, a poem that
linked the invention of the atomic bomb with Jews desiring revenge for
the Holocaust. (J. Weinstein, personal communication, March 17,
Although Weinstein rejects the notion of censorship, he does reserve
the prerogative of rejecting material for which censorship might be
necessary. His anecdote about a single occasion induces a sufficiently
extreme case that few people would call him severe for discouraging the poem
in question.
If the samples we have reviewed in this chapter are any indication,
expansive authors do not seem to expend careful composition on their
communications with their editors. We would expect, and we do see, an
opposite tendency with the editors urging authors, especially ones with
whom they are not yet in a business relationship. We can get more data on
this point from the complicated affair of Hemingway's change of publishers,
plotted in his New Year's Eve, 1925, to New Year's Day, 1926, letter to


[21.1]Have just received following cable from Liveright-- Rejecting
Torrents of Springs Patiently awaiting manuscript Sun Also Rises
Writing Fully--
[21.2] I asked them in the letter I sent with the Ms. to cable me their
decision. [21.3]I have known all along that they could not and would
not be able to publish it as it makes a bum out of their present ace and
best seller Anderson. [21.4]Now in 10th printing. [21.5]I did not,
however, have that in mind in any way when I wrote it.
[21.6]Still I hate to go through the hell of changing publishers etc.
[21.7]Also the book should come out in the late Spring at latest.
[21.8]That would be best. Later would not be bad but Spring would be
[21.9]My contract with Liveright--only a letter--reads that in
consideration of there publishing my first book at their own expense
etc. they are to have an option on my first three books. [21.10]If they
do not exercise this option to publish within 60 days of receipt of Ms. it
lapses and if they do not exercise their option on the 2nd book it lapses
for 3rd book. [21.11]So I'm loose. [21.12]No matter what Horace may
think up in his letter to say.
[21.13]As you know I promised Maxwell Perkins that I would give him
the first chance at anything if by any chance I should be released from
[21.14]So that is that.
[21.15]In the meantime I have been approached by Bradley (Wm
Aspenwell) for Knopf.
[21.16]In the meantime I have the following letter from Louis
[21.17]Dear Ernest--Appropos of "Torrents of Spring" I received a
letter today from Alfred Harcourt who replied at once to a line I had
written / taking the liberty after talking with you / regarding the
chances of your shifting publishers. [21.18]He is very eager to see the
Anderson piece and is thoroly familiar with your stuff--both in the
magazines and In Our Time. [21.19]In this connection he writes--
[21.20]"Hemingway is his own man and talking off his own bat.
[21.21]! should say, Yea brother, and we shall try to do the young man
as much credit as he'll do us, and that's considerable. [21.22]I'd like to
see his Anderson piece. [21.23]It's a chance for good fun, if not for too
much money for either of us. [21.24]Hemingway's first novel might
rock the country. ["]
[21.25]He also stands ready to advance money in case you need it, as
soon as you like, provided you are free of Liveright and want to go to

Harcourt. [21.26]I was pleased to have so prompt and interested an
answer, though of course, it was to be expected, etc.
[21.27]So that's that.
[21.28]In any event I am not going to Double Cross you and Max
Perkins to whom I have given a promise.
[21.29]I will wire Liveright tomorrow A.M. to send Manuscript to Don
Stewart care of the Yale Club, New York (only address I can think of
tonight) and summarize by cable any propositions he may be making
me in his letter.
[21.30]It's up to you how I proceed next. [21.31]Don I can wire to send
Ms. to Max Perkins. [21.32]You can write Max telling him how
Liveright turned it down and why and your own opinion of it. [21.33]I
am re-writing The Sun Also Rises and it is damned good. [21.34]It will
be ready in 2-3 months for late fall or later if they wish.
[21.35]As you see I am jeopardizing my chances with Harcourt by first
sending the Ms. to Scribner and if Scribner turned it down it would be
very bad as Harcourt have practically offered to take me sight unseen.
[21.36]Am turning down a sure thing for delay and a chance but feel
no regret because of the impression I have formed of Maxwell Perkins
through his letters and what you have told me of him. [21.37]Also
confidence in Scribners and would like to be lined up with you.
[21.38]You, however, are an important cog in the show and I hate to
ask you to write even one letter when I know you are so busy getting
away and all.
[21.39]However there is the situation.
[21.40]I don't know exactly what to write to Bromfield. [21.41]Perhaps
you will suggest something. [21.42]In any event say nothing to
Bromfield who has been damned decent, nor to anybody else in Paris
till you hear from me.
[21.43]I will wire Liveright in the morning (to send Ms. to Don at Yale
Club). [21.44]Then when I hear from you I can wire Don to send Ms to
Maxwell Perkins. [21.45]Write me Scribners' address.
[21.46]Today is Thursday. [21.47]You will get this letter on Saturday
(perhaps). [21.48]The mail boats leaving are the President Roosevelt
on Tuesday and the Majestic and Paris on Wednesday. [21.49]Mark
your letter via one of the latter 2 ships and it will go fastest.
[21.50]Have been on a long trip all day. [21.51]Tired as hell.
[21.52]Chinook for ten days. [21.53]Snow all gone to slush.
[21.54]Suppose that I will spend all my advance royalties on cables
again this year. [21.55]Oh yes. [21.56]That reminds me that the
advance I want is $500. [21.57]The advance I had on the Short Stories
was $200.
[21.58]God it feels good to be out from Liveright with the disturbing
reports I have had from Fleischman etc. [21.59]Liveright supposed to
have dropped $50,000 in last theatrical venture. [21.60]Has sold 1/2

business, sold Modern Library etc. [21.61]They ought to get someone
like Ralph Barton or [John] Held or [Miguel] Covarrubias to illustrate
the torrents. [21.62]It has 5000 more words than Don's first parody
Outline of History [1921].
[21.63]Well so long. [21.64]I'm certainly relying on your good nature
in a lousy brutal way. [21.65]Anyway so long again and best love to
Zelda and to you both from Hadley and
[21.66]New Years Morning P.S.
[21.67]Got to worrying last night and couldn't sleep. [21.68]Do you
think I ought to go to N.Y.? [21.69]Then I would be on the spot and
could settle things without a six weeks lapse between every
proposition. [21.70]Also could be on hand to make or argue any
excisions on Torrents. [21.71]If Liveright wants to hang onto me as his
cable indicates could settle that. [21.72]Also should get In Our Time
plates if I change publishers. [21.73]Etc. [21.74]Meantime I have to
wait at least 2 weeks more for my new passport. [21.7501ld one ran
out Dec. 20. [21.76]Applied for new one Dec. 8 or 9--takes 5 weeks for
it to come.
[21.77]Well so long anyway. [21.78]Bumby's very excited about going
to get his new jockey cap, whip etc. [21.79]I'm going down to get them
through the Customs today.
[21.80]Best to you always,
[21.81]Ernest (Baker, 1981, pp. 183-185)
As always, Hemingway jumps to business instantly, though in this
case with an unusual dramatic gesture. We get a fairly full glimpse of
Hemingway's strategies here and of the expansive tendencies that guide
them. He immediately has a narcissistic explanation for the rejection he has
received. From an editor's standpoint, it would be sheer nonsense to reject
an author on the grounds he was promising to be too good. If Hemingway is
going to overshadow Anderson, then it will happen irrespective of which
publisher Hemingway has, and Liveright would be foolish to want him
anywhere else. The otherwise mysterious fragment "now in tenth printing"
[21.4] suggests that, on the contrary, it is Hemingway who is envious at the
moment. Not a word is lost in questioning the merits of the rejected complete

manuscript which Max Perkins craftily described, in Sample 4, as "grand and
not censorable."
But Hemingway's expansive hastiness exerts different demands on
him, since he can see that changing publishers would clearly mean a delay in
publication, and, of course, the money he could expect from it; and the delay
seem to disrupt his sense of which season of the year is the best for bringing
out new books. (Perhaps this "spring" would bring torrents of cash.) The
narcissistic author Hemingway abruptly yields to the calculating business
Hemingway, and the discourse shifts to the vocabulary of publishing and
commerce. The contract with Liveright contains two clauses he can use as a
pretext to break it. There is a discrepancy here in terms of the contract, vis-a-
vis what he tells Perkins, namely that here the option of 60 days is being
applied to the first book, whereas in the letter to Perkins, the 60-day option
expressly applies to the second book. The difference is absolutely crucial,
since at the moment Liveright is left hanging without having The Sun also
Rises in hand at all, so that the only thing Hemingway would need to wreck
the whole process would be a minor delay in its publication; so it seems likely
that the version quoted to Perkins was the accurate one. Nonetheless, the
expansive Hemingway is not to be lightly rejected, and his vindictiveness at
this event gains the upper hand and legitimizes his sense that he is "loose,"
though in the immediately following sentence he senses that Horace
Liveright will have grounds to question such an interpretation of the contract
and, indeed, Hemingway's business ethics in principle.

The next paragraph of the letter also gives an inaccurate replay of the
letter to Perkins in which there was actually no talk of "being released from
Liveright," but for Hemingway, "that is that" [21.27]. We can see what is
going to happen to Liveright when he tries to settle the matter amicably.

However, if that is that, the news about Knopf is technically irrelevant, but,
of course, it serves Hemingway's expansivity perfectly in a moment when he
might otherwise be a bit at loggerheads. Apparently the wording of Bradley's
"approach" is not quite what he should have said had he known Hemingway's
modes of interaction, and the limelight is instead given to Harcourt.
Hemingway lovingly retypes the letter from Bromfield, which in its turn
purports to retype a letter from Alfred Harcourt. The style of letter either
suggests that Bromfield is adding some flair or, if this is actually what
Harcourt said, he was cleverly playing up to Hemingway's macho self-image,
even down to the metaphors, and, of course, not forgetting to mention the all-
important factor of "money." One wonders if the original phrase "too much
money for either of us" [21.23] is an accurate rendition, since the whole tone
of the pitch should be too much money for us or too little for him; the idea of
Hemingway rejecting a contract for offering too much money is so ludicrous
we can dismiss it out of hand. Bromfield is also quite familiar with "Ernest,"
as we see from mentioning that Harcourt replied "at once," was "prompt and
interested" and stressing that "it was to be expected" from anyone who is
"thoroughly familiar with your stuff." Bromfield then puts "advance money"
in front of "Ernest" and adds a nice self- effacing touch saying he was "taking
a liberty" in mentioning Hemingway's situation to Harcourt.
The renewed refrain "that's that" must have a different function here
than it did before, because the first "that's that" was in the context where it
was perfectly plain what Hemingway was going to do to the unsuspecting
Liveright, whereas here there is no indication what Hemingway feels
disposed to do about Harcourt's feeler. Later in the one-sentence paragraph,
however, there is a situation that has an even different function, namely it
solidifies Fitzgerald's role in helping Hemingway get what he wants, as if the

situation itself, and not Hemingway, is urgently requesting Fitzgerald to
"write one letter," whereas it is, of course, Hemingway's machinations that
are still in the process of creating what here is announced with finality as
"the situation." Precisely where Hemingway is assiduously engaged in
bringing about an otherwise unexpected and unnecessary state of affairs, he
passes the torch to Fitzgerald as the one whose role in the whole business
looks to be rather demanding. Hemingway "may hate to go through the hell
of changing publishers" [21.6], but he plainly wants company in hell, and
Fitzgerald is the one who is to stoke the fire. We are obliged to consult his
follow-up, again invoking a promise which, at least on the basis of his letter
to Perkins in Sample 2, had not actually been made as such. Expansively
overlooking the inconsistency, he immediately announces the action of wiring
Liveright, which becomes part and parcel of a move which ought to be
obvious as a "double cross" to any but the most expansive author. The plan
of the discourse becomes clear after this--namely to put the brunt of the
negotiations onto Fitzgerald, just as Hemingway protested ignorance of "how
to proceed" when he wanted Wilson to do something in Sample 1.
Fitzgerald's job is to convey Hemingway's own side of the story about
Liveright, presumably including the expansive alibi of "making a bum out of
their star author" and heaping his own praise ("opinion") to assuage
hesitations Perkins might have. Moreover, Fitzgerald is to pressure Perkins
into accepting the manuscript rather than risking a severe affront to an
author who has an offer to be "taken sight unseen." Fitzgerald gets the full
treatment, even though if he has any sense, he can see perfectly well that
Hemingway is jeopardizing his chances. Hemingway tells him not once, but
twice, though the second protestation is not strictly accurate, since he is not
yet "turning down a sure thing," and he can always go to Harcourt later, with

appropriate excuses if Scribner's doesn't work out. Similarly, although
Fitzgerald can see his obvious importance to Hemingway's plan, he is
described in an utterly inept metaphor--mixing machines with the theater--
as an "an important cog in the show." As a consolation of sorts, Fitzgerald is
tossed some flattery of Perkins and of himself as someone to be "lined up
with." Fitzgerald is also to conjure up some idea of how to handle Bromfield
[21.41]. The further paragraph about wiring Liveright is totally
unnecessary, since it merely repeats with less precision what he explained
before. What can be its function here, if we assume--and the letter gives good
evidence for this--that Hemingway is paying attention to what he is writing?
One motive might be to give this plan a sense of finality and to reassure
Fitzgerald that Hemingway himself has it firmly in mind. But there is a
subtle change between the two paragraphs in that Fitzgerald is now required
to contact Hemingway before the wire can go to Don at the Yale Club. Also,
the request for Scribner's address might easily be conveyed in such a
message, but Hemingway obviously wants to get the manuscript out of
Liveright's hands instantly, even though he'll have to go a roundabout way
before getting to Perkins. The paragraph about mail boats is similarly
strategic in trying to get Fitzgerald steamed up into the proper mood of
haste. On top of all the other prods the letter contains, it also supposes as an
accomplished fact that Fitzgerald has written a "letter" between Saturday
and Tuesday, despite how much Hemingway "hates to ask you to write even
one letter," to say nothing of the letters to Perkins and Bromfield that seem
to be involved in Fitzgerald's assignment as well. A brief pause which might
be considered friendly gossip about a trip and the weather does not sustain
even for a single paragraph without Hemingway coming back to the matter of
money, which "reminds him" (despite the fact that he has had to make an

abrupt topic shift here) that Perkins had better know that he's to cough up
$500.00 at once.
It is typical for Hemingway that he does not feel at all abashed when
he now gives his true reasons for dumping Liveright, namely suspicion that
the company might not be financially sound. Presumably Fitzgerald will
have the good sense to approach Perkins more openly than Hemingway is
ordering him to do with the official version about endangering Anderson, to
judge by Fitzgerald's quote, from a letter of May 12, 1927, that "it is all bull
that he left Liveright about that story." Hemingway does not appear to have
anticipated that Fitzgerald could depart from his task even to this extent.
Yet Hemingway's expansiveness does not keep him from having
misgivings about what he's up to in this letter. Perhaps he thinks he can fix
it by admitting quite frankly that "he is relying on your good nature in a
lousy brutal way," perhaps one of the most sincere things in the entire letter.
But the postscript indicates he didn't quite feel he could let matters rest on
this presumably humorous note and raises the prospect of "going to NY" so
that he could do some of the leg work himself that he has been assigning to
Fitzgerald in the letter. This would suit his expansiveness "settling things
without a six-week lapse," and if "excisions on Torrents" are necessary, he
could personally either "make" them (improbable) or else "argue" them
(highly probable). Also, he had some sense that dropping Liveright will not
be quite as easy as he has made it seem in the letter, yet lest Fitzgerald feel
that he is completely off the hook and that there is no time pressure for
immediate response, Hemingway has a proper story of higher
circumstances--a passport involving "five weeks" delay, during which time,
Fitzgerald is to infer, Hemingway, Perkins, Harcourt, possibly Knopf,
Bromfield, and Don Stewart might all be waiting for Fitzgerald to do

something. The postscript concludes with another half-hearted attempt to be
friends and gossipy, but one supposes the only reason he doesn not jump
back to his expansive plans and schemes again is that the letter ends here.
In view of all this, the conjecture that Fitzgerald would presumably
have the good sense to broach the matter more openly is confirmed by the
January 28, 1926, wire he sent Perkins.


[22.2]FITZGERALD (Bruccoli & Duggan, 1980, p. 187)
Fitzgerald must have realized that serving up Hemingway's alibi

about Anderson with a straight face would be greeted with skepticism and
perhaps the loss of some credit on Perkins' side. He describes the manuscript
rejected by Liveright on his terms, which indicate the somewhat extortionary
quality of Hemingway's plan, which is reinforced by forbidding
"qualifications." However, the "definite offer" from Harcourt is a cagey
falsification, since, if we take Bromfield's rendition of Harcourt's message to
be either accurate or an overstatement, we can see that Harcourt has merely
shown interest but not yet made an offer. This mixture of fact and fiction is
an ingenious solution to the problems Hemingway has dumped in
Fitzgerald's lap. Fitzgerald retains his credit on an issue Perkins can easily
confirm by looking at a manuscript and has stretched the truth on an issue
Perkins will be unlikely to disconfirm. From Perkins' standpoint,
Hemingway's "situation" must have been a bit disquieting in committing his
house to publish two manuscripts which he has not seen and one of which he
has a great reason to believe will either not sell or will sell only on the basis

of whatever credit the author gains from the publication of the first. It is to
Perkins' credit that having weighed the odds, he could see some long-run
advantage in the short-run disadvantages. He must have been astute enough
to know or guess what was going on at Liveright's; the mere fact that
Hemingway did not write to him directly, and was putting things in
Fitzgerald's hands should have tipped him off. Yet, as we see from his
approach to Lewellyn Powys in Sample 19, he had a knack for being self-
effacing not merely when it meant writing adulant, graceful letters in
response to stubborn, aggressive ones, but also for laying out money for a
whole set of projects of which he knew only some of them were likely to fulfill
their promise.


In this chapter we have been concerned with discourse moves in the
interaction of authors with mediators as well as with other authors, when the
degree of collaboration tends to be rather low. The discourse moves
accordingly tend to follow typical patterns in which expansive authors make
demands on other people in pursuit of their need for literary reputation and
financial success, such as opening a letter immediately with reference to
business, dropping frequent and heavy hints that cash advances would be
most appropriate, dropping names of distinguished people with whom one is
associated, prodding others to do their share as quickly as possible, and
mixing what would seem to be personal or family gossip with these other
plans and needs. Specifically in respect to their editors, the expansive
authors resist making changes or omissions in their works, offering a variety
of arguments as to why the changes cannot be made, especially on the

grounds that even minor alterations would cause major losses in artistic
quality. This stance toward editors has been shown to indicate all three
subtypes of expansive tendencies described in Third Force psychology. The
most prominent that we looked at was the perfectionist tendency to insist
that one's authorial work was done with a maximum of care and attention,
whether or not this portrayal could be considered accurate. The next most
prominent was the narcissistic tendency, in which the author basks in his or
her role as a prominent personality who should not be troubled by complaints
and requests made in the name of the reading public (the common people).
The least frequent was the arrogant-vindictive tendency to feel that one's
mediators are generally in league against you and determined to force their
standards and preferences on your work; here even the slightest division of
opinion can escalate into a major confrontation. All three expansive subtypes
are calculated to give the author a decidedly stronger position than the
mediators, whether or not they represent consistent personality tendencies of
the authors throughout their entire daily lives. We have seen that authors
can be quite supportive of other authors despite their expansiveness in
dealing with editors and publishers, and I have suggested several possible
motives for this. Perhaps the tendency to focus one's expansiveness on one's
role as an author on precisely those occasions when your authorial skills are
questioned, at least implicitly, by requests for changes, reflects the inherent
expansiveness of undertaking to be a literary author in the face of the
enormous competition from the classic literature of the past and, specifically
for American authors, the overpowering comparison with European
A corollary of expansive authors tends to be that editors will become
skilled in assuming self-effacing stances unless they have good motives to be

otherwise, such as when strong action is necessary with authors who are
getting totally out of line. This has its own effects on the discourse coming
from the editors. As we have seen, they consistently participate in the
activity of building the author's literary reputation, but this time with the
goal of persuading changes to be made on the grounds that this will result in
a version more in keeping with such a high reputation. Editors are also likely
to have more elegant and subdued discourse moves for getting authors to do
things than the authors are likely to practice back upon them. The number
of requests is much smaller, and they do not include leg work such as
running out and paying bills; on the contrary, editors skillfully use the
prospects of cash advances to keep the relationship oiled that might
otherwise have some grating effects on all concerned. Thanks to these
talents, situations in which collaboration might be very low indeed are kept
at a fairly balanced and reasonable level, though as we have seen, the
general atmosphere of low collaboration continually impends whenever one
of the details of a particular literary work is called into question.


Between Expansiveness and Self-Effacement: Primarily
Fitzgerald's Great Hopes and Great Doubts for The Great Gatsbv

The inherent implication about undertaking to be a literary author as

an expansive move by no means insures that we will be finding a high
preponderance of expansive personalities among the authors themselves.
Indeed, authors of literature have contributed to world biography whole
galleries of figures who centered their works on self-effacement. These
authors would include Saint Augustine, Coleridge, Poe, Dostoevski,
Dickinson, and H. D. We could also point out authors who centered their
works on detachment, including Voltaire, Blake, Novales, Emerson, and
Thoreau. Also, famous authors may well start out as expansive types and
then move in maturity or old age toward other solutions. This group of

authors would include Goethe, Wordsworth, and Whitman. And finally great
authors are typically ones who can create characters with rich and complex
personalities whose tendencies are by no means a simple mirror of their own,
as Bernard Paris (1986a, 1991) has eloquently shown.
We saw in Chapter 2 that authors who are at times highly expansive

can be much less so in other situations. In some cases, there seems to be a
symbiosis between expansiveness and other tendencies, notably self-
effacement, in which extremes in one direction are compensated for by brief
interludes in the other direction. But there may be more depth than

regularity to these balances as a reflex of literary authorship in the shadow,
as we have remarked, of great authors in the past. In this context, an author
may be alternately expansive in planning new works and imagining their
successes, and then self-effacing in wondering if they will match up to world
standards and worrying that they might be failures. Authors in this
situation should tend toward a significantly higher degree of collaboration
than was shown in the data of Chapter 2. Their mediators, in turn, will not
have to work so hard and skillfully in order to get things accomplished that
seem desirable from their own standpoint. We should find evidence of all
this in the discourse moves of authors and mediators.
F. Scott Fitzgerald appears to fit the more mixed personality type we
have just described. We have already seen him going out of his way to assist
Hemingway, though not to the extremes that Hemingway's "lousy and
brutal" impositions expected him to. And we know from Fitzgerald's
biography that he was continually plagued by self-doubts and lived in the
shadow of failure and self-destruction in a manner reminiscent of some of his
His need for literary reputation was accordingly a complex of needs,
not merely for artistic expression, critical success, and popular success, but
also with a need to be continually reassured and ego-boosted lest he be
overtaken by his anxieties about his career and his projects. Fortunately, he
was in the skilled hands of Maxwell Perkins, who was able to meet this
complex of needs with singular acumen. If Hemingway was characterized by
expansive hastiness about signing contracts, getting proofs, bringing books to
market and so on, Fitzgerald's self-effacing anxieties required Perkins to
expend extensive correspondence on getting Fitzgerald moving and keeping
him there as long as it took to get a completed manuscript in hand and then

to get the revisions within any reasonable expanse of time. And, of course,
he had to get Fitzgerald through the pains as marketing and reviewing took
their course.
Clearly, Fitzgerald called for Perkins to adopt a considerably different

approach than was needed for Hemingway. When Fitzgerald was expansive,
Perkins could use self-effacing tactics to good purpose. When Fitzgerald

shifted to self-effacement, Perkins could be more expansive, showing self-

confidence and assurance in hopes it might be transferred to the self-

doubting author. We will be seeing some fairly clear data for this in Chapter

4, which is concerned with the ways that editors can become expansive, and

the degree of collaboration may be very low or very high, depending precisely

on the strategies they adopt.
In a letter to Perkins dated April 10, 1924, we already see Fitzgerald

effusively explaining why he has not delivered the manuscript of The Great
Gatsbv so far. The following passage is significant in showing the intriguing

mix of expansiveness and self-effacement in Fitzgerald's view of his own


[23.1]So in my new novel I'm thrown directly on purely creative work--
not trashy imaginings as in my stories but the sustained imagination
of a sincere and yet radiant world. [23.2]So I tread slowly and
carefully & at times in considerable distress. [23.3]This book will be a
consciously artistic achievement & must depend on that as the 1st
books did not. (Kuehl & Bryer, 1971 p. 70)
The expansiveness of aspiring to "purely creative work" [23.1] and

"consciously artistic achievement" [23.3] is tempered with the sober

realization that his work in the past has by no means met these qualities--
the characterization "trashy imaginings" [23.1] could hardly be more self-

effacing. In total contrast to Hemingway's claims about selecting every word
with the utmost consideration, Fitzgerald portrays himself struggling along
"slowly and carefully" and even "in considerable distress." The words
"thrown," "tread," and "sustain" convey an imagery of physical stress and
exertion which, combined with "distress," lend a remote and somewhat
unreal quality to his vision of "a sincere and yet radiant world." As an excuse
for slow progress on a promised work this would presumably be more
convincing to an editor than references to whooping cough or the need to visit
the Riviera or Spain, as in Sample 5. The slowness of production is paced in
direct correlation to the artistic quality of the intended result so that Perkins
would be inclined to sympathize, however disquiet he might have been about
whether such a "distressful" undertaking would in fact succeed, and come to
a conclusion that Fitzgerald's momentum gave out. Particularly troubling is
the extremity of the contrast Fitzgerald draws between past work and
expected work by vilifying the former and glorifying the latter.
A somewhat different image is created in a letter written just one day
later (April 11, 1924) to Moran Tudury.


[24.1]I am so anxious for people to see my new novel which is a new
thinking out of the idea of illusion (an idea which I suppose will
dominate my more serious stuff) much more mature and much more
romantic than This Side of Paradise [... ] [24.2]The business of
creating illusion is much more to my taste and my talent. (Bruccoli &
Duggan, 1980, p. 139)
Here the self-effacement is merely implied, namely that his past work
has not been very "serious" and "mature" [24.1]. The future holds the
prospect of "new thinking" that will enable this increased "serious," "mature"
output that would better suit Fitzgerald's "taste and talent." [24.1] But the