23 To C. A. Furth, Allen & Unwin
[The publishers had again been considering the possibility of publishing Mr Bliss, for which see the introductory note to no. 10.]
17 February 1938 20 Northmoor Road, Oxford
Dear Mr Furth,
‘Mr Bliss’ returned safely. I am sorry you have had so much trouble with him. I wish you could find someone to redraw the pictures properly. I don’t believe I am capable of it. I have at any rate no time now – it is easier to write a story at odd moments than draw (though neither are easy) . . .
They say it is the first step that costs the effort. I do not find it so. I am sure I could write unlimited ‘first chapters’. I have indeed written many. The Hobbit sequel is still where it was, and I have only the vaguest notions of how to proceed. Not ever intending any sequel, I fear I squandered all my favourite ‘motifs’ and characters on the original ‘Hobbit’.
I will write and get your advice on ‘Mr Bliss’ before I do anything. It will hardly be before the Long Vacation, or the end of my ‘research fellowship’.1
J. R. R. Tolkien
1. The Long
Vacation is the summer vacation at