Dear Sterling:

I have been thinking much about you, and from time to time have read in the new volume. How are things with you? Are you longing for Carmel? And when you cross the continent will you drop in here again? I hope so. Wish we could take a hike together.

It's late at night — for me — and I've been reading, just came on a front view portrait of Lamb, & it suggests you so much that you seemed in the room. So I'm saying "Hello!". I've got you now — front view like Lamb; side something sounding like Algernon Charles. There's a combination! Eh? (A musician once told me that I am a cross between a horse + a leopard!)

"Hugh Glass" goes on steadily, satisfactorily — no let up in the necessary enthusiasm; a sort of coral-reef process, but all consciously directed. I believe it's worth while. 2,100 lines with 900 to do. No padding either — no slovenly work. So it seems to me.

The war knocked my review work — no book advertising. It rather put me up a tree. But you can't lose if you know where you're going. It's made a trying winter for me, however. Just the same I'm geting ahead on "Hugh".

Damnit, Sterling, what's wrong with us? Nothing seems to matter much except getting it on paper! If I were single & had no mother (which condition may God deny me!) I'd be happy in a cave with some tobacco & plenty of pencils & paper. The women never quite understand that and shouldn't!

Good luck, Old man!

Yours, Jno. N.