The business model of publishing doesn’t seem to have been very attractive then, whatever you think of it now. Thoreau makes several comments about dealing with publishers. Imagine a stack of manuscripts hidden in safes because it cost too much to publish.
‘It costs so much to publish, would it not be better for the author to put his manuscripts in a safe?’ 14 September 1855
Source: Henry David Thoreau, The Journal 1837-1861, Damion Searls (ed.), preface by John R. Stilgoe (New York: New York Review Books, 2009), p. 328
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