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Letter ReferenceHRC/OliveSchreinerLetters/OS-HenryNorman/1
ArchiveHarry Ransom Center, University of Texas, Austin
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date22 May 1884
Address From32 Fitzroy Street, Camden, London
Address To
Who ToHenry Norman
Other VersionsRive 1987: 41
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, the University of Texas at Austin, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscript Collections.
132 Fitzroy St
2May 22 / 84
4Dear Mr Norman
6Thinking the matter over I fancy it would be better to have nothing
7said about my new book till it is out. That may be soon, but it may
8not be for months. I think the more a book is is left to stand alone,
9without any kind of external help, the better. I always think that if
10I were a great writer I should like each book to be brought out under
11a new name so that it got no help from its fore-runners, & stood or
12fell alone.
14Your article in the “Fortnightly Review” gave me a great deal of
15pleasure, as all sympathetic approval must that comes to one
18I was glad especially that you felt interested in Waldo, because few
19people care for him so much as for Lyndall, & I am fond of him.
21Yours truly
22Olive Schreiner
The 'new book' Schreiner refers to is From Man to Man, the manuscript of which she was working on at this time. Henry Norman's review of The African Farm:

Fortnightly Review December 1883, Henry Norman, "Theories and practice of modern fiction": "memorable... this novel offers a rare treat... This book teaches the lesson that wherever there are human hearts beating with natural impulses there is scene enough for all the tragedy and all the comedy of life - that for the delineation of the highest interests of men and women una dumus sufficit. The characters are all original - we have met none of them before; the style is fresh and full of humour; and, in spite of its occasional lapses, the whole story is of fascinating interest, and, what is more, of great moral power."

Rive's (1987) version omits part of this letter and is in a number of other respects incorrect.