August 26, 1911
Mr. Thomas Newell Metcalf
The All-Story Magazine
175 Fifth Ave., New York.
I wish to thank you for your letter of the 24th relative to "Dejah Thoris,
Martian Princess" manuscript. Shall be very glad to rewrite the story in
accordance with your suggestions. It is purely a business proposition with
me and I wish to deliver the goods in accordance with your specifications.
The criticisms which you so kindly make will be very helpful, and if
you can see your way to making further suggestions I shall gladly profit
by them. I realize the inconsistency of having the Tharks talk to any great
extent, but I felt, from my own experience as a reader, that a little conversation
breaks the monotony of a story, and if the Tharks would not talk at all
there could be no conversation in that part of the story.
I brought in the story of Sola, the Thark "lady", because I wanted a
reason for using Tars Tarkas, her father, as a means of killing off Tal
Hajus, befriending Carter, and, in the grand wind-up, effecting a reconciliation
between the green men of Thark and the red men of Helium - sort of love
feast you know.
I will outline the story from the close of the manuscript you h ave,
and you can then suggest changes, if you will be so good.
Part 2: Dejah Thoris and Sola, after leaving Carter, are picked up in
the h ills by "aerial scout cruiser" of a nation of red men at war with
Dejah Thoris' people. Taken to capital. Son of ruler falls in love with
Dejah Thoris. She repulses him. Helium about to fall before the armies
of his people. Dejah Thoris can avert further disaster to her grandfather's
realm by marrying him. Hears of death of Carter and concedes to marriage.
Part 3: Carter among the Warhoons. Battle between Warhoons and Tharks.
Carter saves life of Tars Tarkas, but is recaptured by Tharks and sentenced
to torture by Tal Hajus. Tells Tars Tarkas story of Sola, his daughter.
Tars Tarkas fights with and kills Tal Hajus, thus becoming ruler of the
Tharks . Carter leans of incarceration of Dejah Thoris among the red men
and hastens to their city. Appears with horde of green warriors in time
to interrupt wedding ceremony. Escape with Dejah Thoris. Appears before
Helium and relieves the city from siege. Accepted by the grandfather and
people of Dejah Thoris as their deliverer. Weds Dejah Thoris. Later attempts
to explore the mysterious Valley Dor at mouth of River Iss. Is caught in
mighty air currents above Valley and borne high aloft into cold and darkness.
Loses consciousness and awakens in this Arizona cave.
I had intended making his acceptance by the grandfather of Dejah Thoris
a difficult matter involving intrigue, plots and counter plots, but it
would require too much matter, I fear.
I will put in enough explanation of the manners, customs, scientific
achievements, etc., of the red martians to make the story different from
Earth stories, and while I may change the future plan a little it will
be about as out lined.
I wrote this story because I needed the money it might bring, and not
from motives of sentiment, although I became very much interested in it
while writing. I am therefore open to suggestions, and would like to know
just what parts you consider unessential to the story and avoid a recurrence
in the balance of the manuscript.
Also, please tell me what remuneration I may expect for a story of sixty
to seventy thousand words, and when payment would be made if the story
Again thanking you for your courteous interest, I am,
Yours very truly,
Edgar Rice Burroughs (sig)
I enclose ten cents postage for return of ms.