Manuscript Releases, vol. 10 [Nos. 771-850]


MR No. 778—The Writing and Editing of the E. G. White Books

I sent word that I could furnish materials for volume 4 [Spirit of Prophecy] but I must have been wild. Father needs a great deal of my time, and should I attempt to write, I must give my whole time to it. Heretofore I have had a copyist who took charge of all the proofs and who furnished a very nice copy. 10MR 12.1

You well know my deficiency in this respect. It is a great task for me to arrange my matter to be placed in the hands of the printer without any aid in the matter. If I could do as I have done, write and have a competent copyist prepare my writings for the press, I could do considerable. But as it is, I dare not promise copy to get out a form oftener than once in two weeks, even if I can do that.—Letter 4d, 1878. (To W. C. and Mary White, January 22, 1878.) 10MR 12.2

I have quite a number of letters to go, but shall not try to have them fitted up, for several have written me that when they could have the matter direct from my hand, it was far more forcible than after it had been prepared. It sounded like another thing, and as the matter is not designed for publication, I shall not send it to Fanny [Bolton]. [Fanny Bolton was employed as a literary assistant to Ellen G. White during the early 1890's. A talented writer herself, she sometimes chafed under the anonymity required of those who were employed to correct Ellen White's writings grammatically and eliminate repetition, but who were forbidden to insert their own ideas into Ellen White's manuscripts. Although Mrs. White approved of all articles and books before they were released for publication, she apparently felt that Miss Bolton at times went beyond her assigned duties. In 1894, Miss Bolton was finally separated from Mrs. White's work after repeated cycles of criticism followed by apologies and confessions.] I think Fanny feels that many of my expressions can be bettered, and she takes the life and point out of them.—Letter 77, 1892. (To W. C. White, October 21, 1892.) 10MR 12.3

I have all my publications closely examined. I desire that nothing shall appear in print without careful investigation. Of course I would not want men who have not a Christian experience, or are lacking in ability to appreciate literary merit, to be placed as judges of what is essential to come before the people, as pure provender thoroughly winnowed from the chaff. I laid out all my manuscript on Patriarchs and Prophets and on vol. IV [Great Controversy] before the book committee for examination and criticism. I also placed these manuscripts in the hands of some of our ministers for examination. The more criticism of them the better for the work.—Letter 49, 1894. (August 3, 1894, to W. H. Littlejohn.) 10MR 12.4

After coming to NSW [New South Wales, Australia], he [W. C. White] did for a short time devote one hour a day to the reading of matter on the life of Christ, which my chief worker [Marian Davis] had grouped together, gleaning from my discourses and the articles and letters I have written. This is the advancement that has been made on the Life of Christ.—Letter 69, 1894. (October 1, 1894, to “Representative Men.”) 10MR 13.1

I thank the Lord that I have slept more hours the past night—until 4:00 a.m. Wednesday I could not sleep after half past one a.m. My mind was burdened and in the visions of the night subjects were pressed upon my mind and I awoke. I could not find relief until I arose and commenced to trace upon paper that which burdened me, which in object lessons was presented before me. Thursday I slept until half past two o'clock and then I arose and again relieved my mind by writing.—Manuscript 74, 1894. (Diary, April 28, 1894.) 10MR 13.2

White Estate

Washington, D. C.,

April 2, 1980.