Auction house Profiles in History is auctioning off a couple of Jack London letters at its Property of a Distinguished American Private Collector Part III auction on December 19.
One of the letters reveals a timeless problem that every freelancer has experienced, being underpaid. In the letter, London fights with his editor for a higher rate.
Fine Books Magazine has the scoop:
Jack London wanted more than four cents a word, bless his freelancing heart. In a five-page letter London wrote on May 6, 1905, he chided his Cosmopolitan editor, John Brisbane Walker, about his article, “Revolution,” and the paltry fee he was offered via telegraph. “I couldn’t see why an article ten times stronger plus my name was not worth five cents a word,” he wrote.