By Julio Cortázar
The first of Cortázar's books to appear in English, The Winners (Los premios) was published by Pantheon in 1965 in a translation by Elaine Kerrigan. The jacket is by Muriel Nasser.
I really like the JACKET, Sara. Say so to Muriel Nasser, who I hope is not related to that other Nasser. Or is it the same Nasser who works for you under a feminine pseudonym? You never can tell.
I put the jacket on another book, and it looked wonderful. I like it very much, you know. I've never seen such a large photo of me. How young I was when it was taken! In this last three years I've aged a lot; now I can't read for more than two hours in one sitting, and at times I have rheumatism. But the heart is still young, as the bishop said to the actress.
Excerpts from a letter to Sara and Paul Blackburn, December 17, 1964, from Cartas 2: 1964-1968, published in 2000 by Alfaguara. Sara Blackburn was Cortázar's editor at Pantheon; her husband, the poet Paul Blackburn, translated several of his works as well as being his American agent and good friend. The translation of the excerpts is my own, but the portions in italics are in English in the original.