Of course there is love-making in ‘Otto’, and indeed a good deal of it

[Dots between square brackets indicate cuts made by Sidney Colvin. For full, correct and critical edition of this letter, see Mehew 4, 1092.]

To W.E. Henley [Colvin 1911, 2, pp. 128-129]

[Chalet la Solitude, Hyères, 30 April 1883]


My head is singing with Otto; for the first two weeks I wrote and revised and only finished IV chapters: last week, I have just drafted straight ahead, and I have just finished Chapter XI.

RLS, ‘Prince Otto: A Romance’, 1885 [https://ia902308.us.archive.org/]

‘Prince Otto’, beginning of Chapter XI [https://ia902308.us.archive.org/]

 It will want a heap of oversight and much will not stand, but the pace is good; about 28 Cornhill pp. drafted in seven days, and almost all of it dialogue – indeed I may say all, for I have dismissed the rest very summarily in the draft: one can always tickle at that. At the same rate, the draft should be finished in ten days more; and then I shall have the pleasure of beginning again at the beginning. Ah damned job!

Second edition of ‘Prince Otto’, 1886 [https://ia601704.us.archive.org/]

I sometimes feel very weary; but the thing travels – and I like it when I am at it. Remember me kindly to all. Your ex-contributor,



Fanny Stevenson, 1885

Fanny Stevenson, 1885

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