ALL AUTHORS ARE EQUAL by Fredric Warburg


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Mann and Michener? Both appeared on Mr. Warburg's list although it must be acknowledged as he continued his Occupation for Gentlemen (1959) he was essentially interested in presenting writers of distinction in a country and an era when publishing was more of a profession than a commerce. Plain speaking for the most part, bookish rather than personal, not as intellectually wide-ranging, complex or charming as Leonard Woolf, Warburg, writes of his acquisitions which included not only Mann but Musil, Orwell whose ""little squib"" Animal Farm was dismissed by T.S. Eliot and fortunately proved to be Warburg's ""economic salvation,"" Angus Wilson, Colette in her last years, etc., etc., and the launching of Encounter. He had recurrent financial difficulties and finally Seeker & Warburg, his important firm, came under the canopy of Heinemann but preserved its independence. Can Warburg say with equal truth and self-assurance that he's published eight out of the ""ten major prose writers"" between 1910 and 1950 while excluding any American other than Henry James from the list (what about Hemingway and Faulkner, for instance) and is it really true that ""American editors edit too much"" as against their British opposites? Be that as it may or may not, he pursued his ""occupation"" with an eye for distinction and quality and his book has some interest as a record of the writers he introduced and the works midwived -- all told, sorry to say, in the same tone of voice.

Pub Date: Nov. 4th, 1974
Publisher: St. Martin's Press