LOVE IN A PRINTING OFFICE.
NOTE FROM EDITOR TO COMPOSITOR.
Ellis Yorke finds fault with proofs of her story. Says “you correct her MS. incorrectly;” that you have substituted the word “wonderous” for “wondrous;’ that there is no such word as “wonderous;” that you made “overripe” a single word when it is a compound one; that, in short, you do not understand your business or are demented.
NOTE FROM COMPOSITOR TO EDITOR.
Sir, — Ellis Yorke is mistaken in more respects than one. There is such a word as “wonderous.” Let her look in Webster’s Unabridged, page 1270, last column, last word From bottom, and she will find it. Also “over-ripe” is a compound word. Evidently she does not know the sign by which compound words are distinguished or she would not be so decided in her assertion.
And with all due respect to her opinion, I am not “demented,” and I do understand my business. Furthermore, if ever mistakes are made, it is because Ellis Yorke’s MS. is most illegible. Her “r’s, “s’s” and “b’s,” are all alike, and her “I’s” and “t’s” might stand for almost anything; and as for her punctuation! I assure you I’d rather set up all the rest of your paper than one of her shortest articles.
NOTE FROM ELLIS YORKE TO COMPOSITOR.
Sir, — The Editor has shown me your impertinent remarks, and though he chooses to look upon our quarrel, as he calls it, in the light of a joke, I regard it as a serious matter.
Because you happen to be right about those detestable words, “wondrous” and “over-ripe,” that is no reason why you should vilify my MS.
You may not be aware of it, but I took the gold medal for penmanship when I graduated at the Posthaste Institute last year, and never before, although I have been writing for the New York press for over six months, have I had its legibility called in question.
And I won’t stand it! I demand from you my story, as the Editor refuses to procure it for me. You shall no longer sneer at my “r’s” and “s’s,” and “I’s” and “t’s.”
NOTE FROM COMPOSITOR TO ELLIS YORKE.
Madam, — I cannot return MS. placed in my hands. I wish I could— how gladly I would return yours!
WHAT SHE DID AND SAID.
Then I resolved to beard the lion in his den — go to the printing office, ask for Hugh Basset, and, with a few preliminary sarcastic observations, request the return of “The Tragedy of Winona Dell.”
I went. The devil requested me to be seated while he called my enemy.
I prepared to meet him (hateful old thing) with a terrible frown, when to my great astonishment, instead of a hateful old thing, a tall, handsome young fellow with bright, sunshiny smile, eyes like spring violets, and hair that suggested buttercups and dandelions, advanced toward me.
It was he — and I said, ” I beg your pardon for the rude things I have written to you — and I hope you’ll forgive me — and I’m sorry I wrote so badly, and don’t know how to punctuate and — ”
Good gracious! I didn’t intend to say anything of the sort.
WHAT HE SAID.
I stepped from my form, and a pretty girlish face looked up at me with a frown that quickly melted away into a most bewitching smile.
Ellis Yorke — I don’t know why, but I knew her in a moment, and noted with a heart pang how poorly she was dressed to brave the cold of a winter’s day. Evidently her “over six months’ writing for the New York press” had not filled her purse.
“I beg your pardon,” she said, in a sweet, low voice, raising a pair of the loveliest gray eyes to my face. And then she added, “I’m so sorry I write so badly.”
“Don’t mention it,” I stammered; “I didn’t mean a word of it. I only wish I could set up your beautiful stories forever!”
“And the ‘r’s,’ and ‘i’s,’ and ‘s’s,’ and ‘I’s,’ and ‘b’s’?” said the saucy, pretty, poor, little girl.
“Are perfection,” I replied.
The proof I sent away that afternoon — a dissertation on “Darwin and His Peculiar Theories” — was returned to me with the question, “What the deuce do you mean by Placing Ellis Yorke’s name as the author of this article instead of Dr. Mega The Riuno’s?”
THE END OF IT.
Married, April 30th, by the Rev. A. B. Ceese, Ellis Yorke to Hugh Basset. — Margaret Eytinge, in Detroit Free Press.
Crawford County Bulletin [Denison, IA] 18 May 1876: p. 8
Mrs Daffodil’s Aide-memoire: Ah, the bickering couple and their love-hate relationship! Mrs Daffodil is sceptical as to how often this occurs outside the cinema. The Shop Around the Corner and the derivative You’ve Got Mail spring to mind. One fears that “The Tragedy of Winona Dell” was much of a mediocre muchness with the tedious fiction usually found in the popular press.
Mrs Daffodil invites you to join her on the curiously named “Face-book,” where you will find a feast of fashion hints, fads and fancies, and historical anecdotes
You may read about a sentimental succubus, a vengeful seamstress’s ghost, Victorian mourning gone horribly wrong, and, of course, Mrs Daffodil’s efficient tidying up after a distasteful decapitation in A Spot of Bother: Four Macabre Tales.