Philip K. Dick’s typescript for A Maze of Death, three galley proofs of the novel and associated editorial correspondence are being offered by Royal Books for $28,500.
The seller’s website features numerous images of the items in the lot, and a short article placing this novel in the context of Dick’s other work.
Of particular interest is editor Lawrence P. Ashmead’s 1968 letter to Dick recommending various changes and asking the author to consider changing a four-letter-word in the text:
Could we tone this down a bit? Not that I mind but it does seem a shame to dlute our sales to libraries who get pretty picking about this sort of thing and I have to warn our School and Library Salesmen when “nasty” words or phrases appear in a book. I won’t insist – I leave it up to you.
Dick obliged by changing a four-letter word to “crap.”
Now don’t you wonder whether Confessions of a Crap Artist was Dick’s original title for that novel?
[Thanks to Michael J. Walsh for the story.]