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Herbert Ravenel Sass Letters, 21 November and 9 December 1924

Two letters, 21 November and 9 December 1924, from Charleston writer Herbert Ravenel Sass (1884-1958) to David M. Newell, Webster Groves, Missouri, were written in response to the latter's correspondence with Sass concerning a story published in the Saturday Evening Post. Newell apparently had questioned Sass regarding the accuracy of details in his story, particularly whether or not a wildcat would attack a dog. The 21 November letter backs up the claims put forward by Sass.

The 9 December letter compliments Newell on his skills as a writer and illustrator of nature articles, and then comments on the challenges facing the writers of stories about animals—"As you know, the writer of animal stories labors under a certain disadvantage. The writer of human stories—that is, stories about people—can make his characters do anything under the sun, no matter how improbable or unnatural, and nobody questions it. On the other hand, the writer of stories about animals has to be darned careful not to do violence to the known facts of natural history; and no matter how careful he may be, he is going to make some slips now and then. I'm sure I have made some and I'll probably make others. But a fellow can only do his best. Still, I've been fortunate so far. Six stories of my present series have so far appeared in the Post and I've had only two kicks—yours and one from a lady in California."

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