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Updated June 2012

T. E. Lawrence to Jonathan Cape

Clouds Hill


Dear Cape

This is for your private eye, not for Savage. It's about that clause in the contract giving you the refusal of any subsequent book. I'm in a slight difficulty there. Any original book: yes. But a very distinguished person's wife once asked me if I would care to edit or 'ghost', her husband's diary, written quite intimately before he became famous, but showing, very wonderfully, the growth of his mind and the slow accumulation of its knowledge. The book would be Macmillan's in any case.

I haven't said either yes or no: and will not, for a long time yet. 'No', probably, since I haven't much desire to undertake so difficult a scissors and paste job... but its anonymity appeals to me: and if I felt at a loose end, say two years hence, then I might try my hand as an editor.

Please keep this entirely to yourself. The existence of the materials is not known, even to Macmillan's... indeed only five people do know of it.

Yours sincerely

T. E. Shaw.

Source: DG 474-5
Checked: mv\
Last revised: 8 February 2006

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