Dr. Johnson has this to say:
Do not fancy that an intermission of writing is a decay of kindness. No man is always in a disposition to write; nor has any man at all times something to say.
[James Boswell. Life of Johnson. Aetat. 68; 11 September 1777.]
In his 1984 University of Nebraska dissertation on the nineteenth-century actor John McCullough, Bruce E. Woodruff assesses the scholarship that came before him with courtesy, restraint, and finality—a nice, clean stroke of the scythe:
While a variety of periodical and newspaper articles have been written about his life and career, only one book about the actor has been published: John McCullough as Man, Actor and Spirit, by Susie C. Clark. While Clark’s book provides interesting observations and anecdotes about the tragedian’s career, she presents only favorable material about him, thus detracting from the objectivity of the book. Clark apparently was a spiritualist, and at least a third of the book is devoted to comments made by individuals who communicated with McCullough after his death.
[Bruce E. Woodruff, ” ‘Genial’ John McCullough: Actor and Manager,” Ph.D. 1984, University of Nebraska, p. ii.]