VENUS RISING FROM THE SEA
PUBLISHED: London. Cassell & Company.
4to., Limited Edition from the Curwen Press of 350 copies
signed by the artist, Number 182, original black lettered
light grey boards, pp. 110 on hand-made paper, illustrated
by E McKnight Kauffer with 7 full page colour drawings,
plus another 3 colour vignettes, a fine copy.
Bennett won a literary competition hosted by Tit-Bits
magazine in 1889 and was encouraged to take up
journalism full-time. In 1894, he became assistant editor
of the periodical Woman. He noticed that the material
offered by a syndicate to the magazine was not very good,
so he wrote a serial which was bought by the syndicate
for £75 (equivalent to £10,000 in 2015). He then wrote
another. This became The Grand Babylon Hotel. Just over
four years later, his first novel, A Man from the North,
was published to critical acclaim and he became editor
of the magazine.
In 1903, he moved to Paris, where other great artists from
around the world had converged on Montmartre and
Montparnasse. Bennett spent the next eight years writing
novels and plays. Bennett believed that ordinary people
had the potential to be the subject of interesting books.
In this respect, an influence which Bennett himself
acknowledged was the French writer Maupassant whose
"Une Vie" inspired "The Old Wives' Tale."
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