[Walter H.] Page
2[Probably another draft of letter which,in note-book, just preceded this, but to which no name was attached][First draft of letter, in note-book #59] (33)[Jan.. '02]Dear Page:Thanks for your great letter. The strength and inspiration of it is enough to make the very trees [and] rooks write. The Park book, Houghton Miff[lin] tell me, is meeting success. To you and Sargent it owes its existence. Before I got your most encouraging letter I never dreamed of writing such a forest book.As to plans for others, I'm now at work on a (1) Yo[semite] and other Yo[semite]s which Johnson has been trying to get me to write for the [last] 4 or 5 years, and which I hope to get off my hands. I'll first offer it to the Century, hoping they will bring it out in good shape, give it a good shove towards readers, and offer fair compensation. Johnson is all right, a very friend of mine, but his Co. did not do half as well by me, and I'm not bound to give them this or any other book I may write on their own terms.(2) The Cal. tree and shrub book was suggested by Merriam last summer. I have already written so much on our forest trees and underbrush I hardly know whether or not I can make another useful book about them. Possibly a handy volume with short telling descriptions and illustrations of each species, enabling the ordinary observer to know them at a glance might do good. This, if undertaken, will probably be done season after next, and you shall have first sight and consideration of it.(3) Next should come a mountaineering book --all about walking, climbing and camping, with a lot of illustrative excursions.(4) Alaska. Perhaps this should come before 3.(5) A book of studies, probably 2 vols., the action of landscape-making forces, earth sculpture, etc. My main real book, in which I'll have to ask my readers to cerebrate somewhat. Still it may, I think, be made readable.(6) Possibly my Auto [biography] that for the last 10 years I've been urged to write by all sorts of people. My life has been so smooth and regular and reasonable, free from blundering, stirring, tellable adventures, the story of it seems hardly worth while in the midst of so much of infinitely more importance. Still, if I live long enough I may be tempted to try it. I begin to see that such a book would offer fair opportunities here and there to say a good word for God.The Harriman Alaska vols. are superb, a magnificent piece of bookmaking, and I'm glad you got the job. In none of the notices I have seen does Dr. Merriam, as editor, get half the credit he deservesGood luck to you. May your shop grow like a Sequoia.Ever faithfully yours,J.M02890
[1902 Jan 10]
Original letter dimensions: 22.5 x 14.5 cm.
Reel 12, Image 0077
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