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TCG Letter #369 / Carpenter Letter #141
Allen & Unwin Ltd.
9 October 1953
Tolkien expresses frustration and anxiety over creating maps for their work, "The Maps." Despite recognizing the maps' essential and urgent nature, they admit to a lack of skill and feeling harried. The challenge lies in fitting the shape and proportions of "The Shire" into a page without sacrificing informativeness. The disappearance of engaging "burned manuscripts" has left Book II, Chapter 5's beginning absurd, losing Runes that readers find attractive. The author desires properly executed, picturesque maps with color and detail, highlighting the difficulty of reducing them to small, black-and-white versions while maintaining clarity.