FAULKNER, WILLIAM. 1897-1962.
Typed Letter Signed ("Bill Faulkner"), 8vo, Oxford, Miss., [January 1946], to Finlay McDermid, with note in blue pencil "Rec'd Jan. 29, '46/ F. McDermid," two-hole punch at head of sheet.
Faulkner writes to McDermid ("Dear Findley" [sic]), head of the writing department at Warner Brothers, regarding the aftermath of Faulkner's departure from the studio and of his attempts to rid himself of his literary agent Bill Herndon. Fed up with the script-by-committee method prevalent in Hollywood, and wanting to devote time to working on A Fable and other projects, Faulkner first requested, then simply tookwithout waiting for permissiona leave of absence, returning home to Oxford. Reports that Faulkner was on the verge of a nervous breakdown followed, and are addressed in the present letter: "I don't know how that nervous breakdown [rumor] started ... Needless to say, I am well, have been well, tend to be well; never had an illness in my life that a drink of whiskey wouldn't make worse." Faulkner also writes of his difficulty shaking free of Herndon, who he believed was cheating him out of a good deal of money: "He wants his pound of flesh, no matter how much blood and skin comes off with it." (See Parini, 287 ff). Included in the present lot are photocopies of three Warner Bros. interoffice communications pertaining to Faulkner's leave of absence and providing further details of the affair.