Harry Ransom CenterThe University of Texas at Austin

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Brian Moore:

A Preliminary Inventory of His Papers at the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center

Creator: Moore, Brian, 1921-1999
Title Brian Moore Papers
Dates: 1935-1998
Extent 35 boxes, 2 galleys (14.7 linear feet)
Abstract: The collection consists of typescript drafts, proofs, and contracts for many novels published since 1962.
Language English.
Access

Open for research




Acquisition

Purchase, 2000 (Reg. no. 14701)

Processed by

Liz Murray, 2001

Repository:

Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, University of Texas at Austin


Although Irish-born Canadian novelist Brian Moore lived in California for more than thirty years, he considered himself a Canadian writer and retained his Canadian citizenship. Because his formative years in Northern Ireland had a profound effect on him, many of Moore's works center on Catholicism and Irish themes. The Ransom Center's collection of Moore papers consists of typescript drafts, proofs, and contracts for many of his novels published since 1962 including An Answer from Limbo, "Black Robe," Cold Heaven, The Color of Blood, The Doctor's Wife, The Great Victorian Collection, Lies of Silence, The Magician's Wife, The Mangan Inheritance, No Other Life, and The Statement. A brief stay in California in 1965 to write the script for Alfred Hitchcock's "Torn Curtain" led to permanent residence in Malibu where Moore wrote additional screenplays as well as novels. Screenplays well-represented in this collection are Black Robe, filmed in 1991, "Control," "Gabrielle Chanel," and "Strangers." Moore also wrote articles for newspapers and magazines including Travel and Leisure, House and Garden, and The New York Times among others, as well as book reviews. These are included, as are texts of various talks, readings, and lectures given in academic and literary settings.

Moore's correspondence spans nearly forty years from 1959-1998, particularly the 1980s and 1990s. Some outgoing correspondence is present, but primarily the collection consists of incoming letters from publishers, editors, agents, fans, critics, friends, other writers, movie directors, and actors. This portion of the collection was poorly organized when received, with only a few packets labeled by year which provided evidence of Moore's original order. To preserve that order and facilitate use, the remaining correspondence has also been arranged by year.

Unique to the Ransom Center's collection is a complete set of diaries from 1957-1992 listing Moore's notes to himself, work logs, summaries of correspondence and telephone calls, possible book titles, details of book contracts and royalties, and appointments. The collection also includes personal papers regarding education and employment from 1943-1960 and photographs. Career-related material is represented by awards, contracts, interviews, and participation in public events.

The collection is organized into four series: Series I. Works, with subseries A. Novels, B. Plays, Screenplays, and Adaptations, and C. Other Writings; Series II. Correspondence; Series III. Diaries; and Series IV. Career-Related and Personal. Two books received with the manuscript material have been transferred to the Ransom Center Library. The collection is in good physical condition and is open for research.

This collection was acquired by the Ransom Center through the dealer Ralph Sipper after Moore's death in January 1999. Moore's papers were organized by the dealer prior to sale and bear both Moore's and the dealer's identifications. These have been relied upon in the arrangement and description of the collection. Additional Moore collection material is held in the Special Collections Library of the University of Calgary.