SIX TYPED LETTERS SIGNED (TLsS). Six letters totaling 9 1/2 pages, all undated [but all circa 1974-February 1975], all to "My dear Kirby" [McCauley], two with full signatures, the others signed "Bob." Johnson, a U.S. writer of popular fiction, published six stories in WEIRD TALES between December 1935 and January 1941, including "Far Below," published in the magazine's issue dated June-July 1939. In 1953, Dorothy McIlwraith, the editor of WEIRD TALES picked it as the best story ever to appear in the magazine. Johnson's letters, written from Monterey, California, to McCauley, his new literary agent, are largely devoted to marketing his horror novel THEY DIE AT SUNDOWN and a Bigfoot story, "Sasquatch," and McCauley's sale of "Far Below" to Robert Weinberg for publication in FAR BELOW AND OTHER HORRORS (FAX 1974). McCauley was not able to sell THEY DIE AT SUNDOWN and returned the manuscript to Johnson. Throughout the letters, Johnson refers to his fiction written for the pulps, largely BLUE BOOK, and his writing style. "My output has been admittedly small, over the years; I've had many other interests (and, in fact, other professions) but almost every story I ever wrote appeared in print. I have only two unpublished 'weird tales' (as I told you when we were discussing a book of such stories a long time back) and one circus story that was rejected because Blue Book's editor had a taboo on 'suicide' tales. That's all, and out of a total of some fifty published yarns, and one nonfiction book that had two editions!... I DO use too many exclamation points, there's no doubt of that; I always have. I used to be horrified by their number, in rereading my published 'Blue Book' stories, and wished I'd left them out. But editor Donald Kennicott never took out a single one, though he published twenty of my yarns, all featured on the cover, and all well received by the readers. For that matter, my weird tales also contain too many 'points' Reread 'Far Below,' just republished for the third time, and hailed by our mutual friend Weinberg as 'my masterpiece,' and you will find just as many excess 'points,' proportionately, as in the book [THEY DIE AT SUNDOWN] you're handling. It seems to be a permanent eccentricity of my style; though not an intentional one." Good content. Johnson's letters are cordial throughout, but he is skeptical that McCauley has done a thorough job with regard to the marketing of THEY DIE AT SUNDOWN. "I confess it's a complete surprise to me, and I still find it difficult to believe. I never had the slightest doubt, when I sent the book to you, that you would sell it. My only worries, at the time, were as to whether it would be the best publisher available, and possible movie, TV rights, and so on, that might develop from it." Faint mailing folds, several edge creases, near fine to fine. (#96290).

Price: $350.00

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