ERNEST VINCENT WRIGHT. INTRODUCTION. The entire manuscript of this story was written with the E type-bar of the typewriter tied down;. That might seem a rather pointless challenge but you can read just such a book – Gadsby by Ernest Vincent Wright, a self-published story from Fifty-year-old John Gadsby is alarmed by the decline of his hometown, Branton Hills, and rallies the city’s young people to form an “Organization of Youth” to.

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Sales of the Wetzel version numbered only 50, out of a few hundred printed. The remainder of its stock was lost to a warehouse fire, making it incredibly rare. Reprints of the work have surfaced since The entire manuscript of this story was written with the E type-bar of the typewriter tied down ; thus making it impossible for that letter to be printed. This was done so that none of that vowel might slip in, accidentally; and many did try to do so! In writing such a story,—purposely avoiding all words containing the vowel E, there are a great many difficulties.

When introducing young ladies into the story, this is a real barrier; for what young woman wants to have it known that she is over thirty?

And this restriction on numbers, of course taboos all mention of dates.

A perusal of the book will show that this is not so. All words used are complete; are correctly spelled and vuncent used. This has been accomplished through the use of synonyms; and, by so twisting vijcent sentence around as to avoid ambiguity. The book may prove a valuable aid to school children in English composition.

People, as a rule, will not stop to realize what a task such an attempt actually is.

But gradually as they saw me writing on and on, without even noticing them, they grew uneasy; and, with ernnest whisperings amongst themselves, began hopping up and riding on my pen, looking down constantly for a chance to drop off into some word; for all the world like sea-birds perched, watching for a passing fish!


But when they saw that I had covered pages of typewriter size paper, they slid off onto the floor, walking sadly away, arm in arm; but shouting back: We are in every story ever written, hundreds of thousands of times! This is the first time vincejt ever were shut out!

10 Works of Literature That Were Really Hard to Write | Mental Floss

Pronouns also caused trouble; for such words as he, she, they, them, theirs, her, herself, myself, himself, yourself, etc. I have received some extremely odd criticisms since the Associated Press widely announced that such a book was being written. A rapid-talking New York newspaper columnist wanted to know how I would get over the plain fact that my name contains the letter E three times.

And I received eright most scathing epistle from a lady woman! Then the impossible has been accomplished; a paradox to equal hers!

Other criticism may be directed at the Introduction; but this section of a story also is not part of it.

The author is entitled to it, in order properly to explain his work. The story required five vkncent a half months of concentrated endeavor, with so many erasures and retrenchments that I tremble as I think of them. Of course anybody can write such vinxent story. All that is needed is a piece of string tied from the E type-bar down to some part of the base of the typewriter. Then wrnest go ahead and type your story.

Incidentally, you should have some sort of a bromide preparation handy, for use when the going gets rough, as it most assuredly will!

Well; it is the privilege of the reader to unearth any such deception that he or she may think they can find. In closing let me say that I trust you may learn to love all the young folks in the vincnet, as deeply as I have, in introducing them to you. Like many a book, it grows more and more interesting as the reader becomes well acquainted with the characters.


This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was legally published within the United States or the United Nations Headquarters in New York subject to Section 7 of the United States Headquarters Agreement beforeand copyright was not renewed.

The author died inso this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author’s life plus 75 years or less. This work may vincnet be in the public domain in countries and wdight with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works. Works published in would have had to renew their copyright in either ori. As it was not renewed, it entered the public domain on 1 January Wikipedia articleWikidata item.

Written during andthis work became famous for lacking the letter “e” in its manuscript—an example of a lipogram.

Ernest Vincent Wright

Its publication was delayed writht two years while author Wright tried to find a publisher; eventually, a Los Angeles vanity press called Wetzel picked it up. Effective Februarytheir edition is used here for the Wikisource page.

Chapters not individually listed. For other renewal records of publications between — see the University of Pennsylvania copyright records scans. For all records sincesearch the U. Public domain Public domain false false. Retrieved from ” https: Views Read Edit View history. In other projects Wikipedia. In other languages Add links. This page was last edited on 3 Octoberat By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

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