Budgen, Frank / James Joyce and the making of 'Ulysses', and other writings
Preface to the 1960 edition, pp. 3-6
PREFACE to the 1960 Edition This book may be said to owe its existence to a conversation that took place one Sunday afternoon during the winter of 1931—2 at the home of my friend Patrick Kirwan, novelist,. writer for stage and screen, and at that time reader for the publishing house of Grayson and Grayson. We were at tea when Mr. Rupert Grayson called and joined us. The conversation turned on Joyce. Kirwan said that I ought to write a book about Joyce and that Grayson and Grayson ought to publish it. Rupert Grayson tentatively fell in with the suggestion. I agreed and said I would begin right away, for it seems to be an occupational illusion of most painters that they can write a book if they care to turn their hands to it. I very quickly realized, however, that the first thing to do was to write to Joyce and, if possible, get his blessing for the project. It would have been very difficult in any case to get far if he expressly disapproved. As may be seen from his correspondence, Joyce was at that time greatly worried about his daughter's health and his own, and was also trying to get Ulysses published and on sale in England. His reaction to my project appears in a letter dated March i 932, the relevant passage of which reads: ' Now as regards your projected book, if Gorman and Louis Golding finish their biographies of me and if Harmsworth publishes Charles Duff's J.J. and the plain reader with a preface by Herbert Read yours will be the seventh book mainly about a text which is unobtainable in England.' A reasoned scepticism is always a little discouraging, butJoyce went on to say that he thought my method of approach would probably be an original one, so that the green light was just visible.
New material in this edition, copyright © Estate of the late Frank Budgen 1972.| For information on re-use see: http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/Copyright