Edward William Bok > The Americanization of Edward Bok > Page 382

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Edward William Bok (1863–1930). The Americanization of Edward Bok. 1921.


Page 382

hostesses I have known, but has now fallen upon hard times.
  Among other things that she really knows, she really does thoroughly know old furniture and all kinds of china worth knowing.
  Pardon me if I have been guilty of an indiscretion in sending this direct to you. I am throwing myself upon your indulgence in my desire to help a splendid woman.
  She has a great collection of recipes which housekeepers would like to have. Does a serial cook-book sound like nonsense?

A further point in his editing which Bok always kept in view was his rule that the editor must always be given the privilege of revising or editing a manuscript. Bok’s invariable rule was, of course, to submit his editing for approval, but here again the bigger the personality back of the material, the more willing the author was to have his manuscript “blue pencilled,” if he were convinced that the deletions or condensations improved or at least did not detract from his arguments. It was the small author who ever resented the touch of the editorial pencil upon his precious effusions.

As a matter of fact there are few authors who cannot be edited with advantage, and it would be infinitely better for our reading if this truth was applied to some of the literature of to-day.

Bok had once under his hand a story by Mark Twain, which he believed contained passages that should be deleted. They represented a goodly portion of the manuscript. They were, however, taken out, and the result submitted to the humorist. The answer was curious. Twain evidently saw that Bok was right, for

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