I love old Jess. She isn’t but twenty-two, and she will be less sniffy some of these days and not so scornful and impatient with repeaters and parasiters and people like that, but just now she says they aren’t worth wasting time on. She can talk you right into seeing her way, and the first thing you know you are agreeing with her, and she has landed you before you realized the net was out. Landed outsiders, I mean. She will never land Mother and Florine. I love to hear her talk, though I don’t think I am going to be a Careering person. I’d like to be one, but with a dozen children I am afraid there won’t be time. I wouldn’t tell old Jess, but I don’t think she is going to Career very long, either. I believe she is in love with the man who taught her some of the ologies she is so interested in. He is awfully nice, but not very practical. He is a psychological sociologist or a sociological psychologist, I don’t know which, but it doesn’t matter. If Jess marries him she will run him and the house.
I wonder what made me get on the subject of my sisters when I began with Billy and the reason I had not written him as often as he has written me, but that is the way I do everything in life. If I were a preacher I wouldn’t hold my job long, for the thing I started on would have about as much connection with the thing I ended with as the moon with milk. Not that that would be unusual, for a good many ministers have the same failing and skip about just as I do, but my trouble would be in hopping from one subject to another so fast that the congregation would be in Jericho one minute and in Jerusalem the next and never know how it made the jump. As I am never going to be a preacher, I am not worrying about my unfitness to be one, but what does worry me sometimes is that my hopping habit will be my ruination when I begin to write a book. My characters will never keep together, or do the proper things or say suitable ones. They will probably get so jumbled up no one will be able to tell which is the chief hero or heroine, and there will be no logical development at all, which my English teacher insists is an elemental requirement of fiction if it isn’t of life. I thought this summer I was going to begin some sort of book just for practice, but by the time I get through putting down the things I scribble about the day’s