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By David H. Keller

MY WIFE used to think that I took the writing game too seriously.

"There is no living with you or loving of you when you are at work on a story, and the longer the story, the longer the period of separation," she would say. I always answered her with a laugh and told her that was the penalty that she had to pay for marrying an artist.

For that was the way I looked at my writing. Prosaic: enough it might seem to others to sit all day at a little low desk and pound the keys of a little old typewriter. Some of my friends told me that it was a poor way for a man of my ability to spend my time, but again T only answered with a laugh and told them that it made me happy.

All my life so far had been spent in comparative isolation in a little town. My outlook on life was apparently contracted, my opportunity for adventure slight. There were few persons to talk to, and, of those few, none who topped me intellectually. I should have been bitter, unhappy and misanthropic. My writing and the far-away fields that it took me into were the panacea that made living a happy adventure, in spite of my surroundings.

I sold a story, and then another, and finally was able to buy a broken-down house and fifty acres of land, some miles from the center of the town. My first thought was to make the house livable for the wife. After that I hunted for some place to write. So far, I had been handicapped by the lack of suitable surroundings in which to pound the keys, composing what I hoped would be my masterpiece. Surely in fifty acres there should be some place where a man could find solitude, comfort and, mayhap, inspiration.

And without hunting for it I found it. A small one-room shack, the floor six by ten, the roof hardly six feet from the floor. It was some distance from the house, almost in the shadow of an overhanging ledge of rock and on the edge of a swamp. I wont into that swamp once and found the mouth of a cave, but the mosquitoes were so. bad that I determined to save further exploration till colder weather.

I was more handy with a typewriter than I was with a saw and hammer; so I put a carpenter to work. First, the roof had to be shingled, and then u new' floor was imperative. Some windows supplied light and ventilation, while copper screens kept out the bugs. We put shelves on the walls, and I moved my books out there at the end of one week, and arranged them while a painter dabbled green paint all over the outside. At last I had a place for my desk and my typewriter.

It was a wonderful place to write. There was always light, but all throu...

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