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The New York Times, May 21, 1908

To the American Booksellers for Helping Him Make a Living.

At the annual dinner of the American Booksellers' Association last evening at the rooms of the Aldine Association Mark Twain, in his usual white flannel suit, told how well his books had sold since they had passed from subscription agents into the hand of the booksellers.

"For thirty-six years my books were sold by subscription," he said. "The books passed into the hands of my present publishers in 1904, and you then became the providers of my diet. I think I may say without flattering you that you have done exceedingly well by me.

"By the terms of my contract my publishers had to account tome for 50,000 volumes per year for five years, and pay me for them whether they sold them or not. It is at this point that you gentlemen come in, for it was your business to unload the 250,000 volumes upon the public in five years if you possibly could. Have you succeeded? Yes, you have - and more. For in four years, with a year still to spare, you have sold the 250,000 volumes and 240,000 besides."

The story teller then said he was building a farmhouse with the proceeds, where he intends to take a vacation for thirty or forty years before completing the five books he is now engaged on.

Other speakers at the dinner were the Rev. Dr. Newell Dwight Hillis, Burges Johnson, Will Irwin, Holman Day, and Simon Brentano. About 400 were present.

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