Monday, October 29, 2007

Letter to CM Eddy, Jr by Farnsworth Wright

(Lovecraft, Howard Phillips) Wright, Farnsworth. TYPED LETTER, SIGNED (TLS). 2 pages, dated 6 November 1924, to "Dear [Clifford M.] Eddy, signed "Wright" [in a secretarial hand] on two sheets of 7 1/2 x 10 1/2-inch stationery with WEIRD TALES letterhead. Wright (editor of WEIRD TALES from November 1924 to December 1939) writes about reader reaction to Eddy's short story, "The Loved Dead," a Lovecraft revision. The story, a horrific tale of the exploits of a murderous necrophile, appeared in the first anniversary issue of WEIRD TALES, May-June-July 1924. Wright comments that Eddy's story "did not draw the number of complaints that Miller's story ['The Hermit of Ghost Mountain'] drew; but it was 'The Loved Dead' that caused the Parent-Teachers' Association to take action that is keeping us off many stands in Indiana." According to Joshi and Schultz, "the story reads as if Lovecraft had written it from beginning to end, although it clearly was based on a draft by Eddy. The tale is manifestly a self-parody and in its florid language brings to mind 'The Hound'... When the tale was published in WEIRD TALES, it elicited a protest from authorities in Indiana, who sought to have the issue banned. Subsequently, editor Farnsworth Wright became hesitant to accept any stories from Lovecraft that featured explicitly gruesome passages of the kind found in 'The Loved Dead,' and as a result several of Lovecraft's later tales were rejected." (An H. P. Lovecraft Encyclopedia, p. 156). Wright suffered from a form of Parkinson's disease which made it impossible for him to write his name, except with a typewriter. This letter is signed "Wright" in black ink in a secretarial hand. Approximately 300 words. Old mailing folds, paper a bit darkened, very good. (#109164) Price: $1,000.00

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