But what really caught my eye was the mention of an article that he wrote or was supposed to have written:
I had a disappointing bust up with Holiday. The editors told me first to write the Illinois piece in my own way and then were appalled by my long discussion of boredom in the Midwest. They wanted me to cheer things up a little, like a true native-son. But I couldn't do that. Like Lincoln, I was a lousy immigrant.Bellow's descriptions of and comments on the Midwest appear in a number of his books, but this would be a real find.
I'm not sure, though, what "Like Lincoln, I was a lousy immigrant" could mean. Kentucky was already a state when he was born there; Indiana became a state shortly after his family moved there, but it was definitely a territory; Illinois was a state by the time the Lincolns settled there. Anyone have an insight?