New Arrival

Typescript Letter, Signed ("HST") to his friend Paul Semonin.

Louisville, KY: Sept 14, '59.

Price: $7,500.00


About the item

1 p. 4to. General toning, otherwise fine.

Item #367616

Thompson writes to his friend Paul Semonin, fellow Louisvillian, and member of the Athenaeum Literary Association. Semonin went to Yale and kept in touch with the younger Thompson via letters. In the early 1960s, Semonin would tag along with Thompson in the Caribbean, while Thompson was working on the manuscript of what would become The Rum Diary, and was marooned in Bermuda with him for a time.

Thompson is writing from his home in Louisville, where he returned for a few months after working for Time Magazine in New York. He starts the letter with quotations from and allusions to Dylan Thomas, which he calls "the hairy part of my letter," before listing all that he was up to, including reaching out to William Styron for the name of his agent, and receiving an "excellent" letter in return, and his first correspondence with his future editor, and later friend, William Kennedy: "have been requested to do article on 'The Dry Rot of American Journalism,' (my title) for new paper in Puerto Rico---after threatening in an earlier letter to kick the editor's teeth in and ram a bronze plaque far into his small intestine.; life is good today, but tomorrow is a black and threatening mass of poverty and terror."

A great letter, full of teasing and bragging and harping to a familiar, in search of what would become the immortal Hunter S. Thompson voice.