Tolkien's rejections

With the passing of Christopher Tolkien, son of J.R.R. Tolkien, we lost a direct connection to the great author and a source of valuable insights into Tolkien's life work. I consider The Lord of the Rings to be one of the great masterworks of literature.

When The History of Middle Earth books began to appear, I bought them faithfully. The four War of the Ring volumes provide a valuable insight into the making of a masterpiece. Reading the early drafts is fascinating--and humbling. Humbling for me as a writer to read stuff that is way better than anything I could ever read IN MY LIFE, and realize that that's stuff he threw away! It wasn't good enough!

What reading experience(s) have you had that evoked humility? Let me know at or

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