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Steve Katz Papers:

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

Creator: Katz, Steve, 1935-
Title: Steve Katz Papers
Dates: 1935-2007
Extent: 42 boxes, 1 oversize box, 1 oversize folder, 2 galley folders (19.36 linear feet)
Abstract: The materials in the Steve Katz papers span his career as a writer from the 1950s to the 2000s and contain drafts of his novels and short stories, as well as personal and professional correspondence and a small amount of material associated with his college and teaching years.
Language: English
Access: Open for research

Acquisition: Purchase, 2006 (Reg. 15421)
Processed by: Hope Donovan Rider, 2007

The University of Texas at Austin, Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center

The materials in the Steve Katz Papers span his career as a writer from the 1950s to the 2000s and contain drafts of his novels and short stories, as well as personal and professional correspondence and a small amount of material associated with his college and teaching years. The collection is organized into four series: I. Works, 1940s-2007; II. Correspondence, 1942-2005; III. Personal and Career-Related, 1935-2006; IV. Works by Others, 1940s-1991.
Series I. Works comprises the bulk of the collection. It is divided into three subseries: A. Novels and Short Story Collections; B. Short Works; and C. Journals and Notepads. Subseries A. contains drafts of all of Katz's published works, as well as many unpublished works, including his first novel, The Steps of the Sun, and a travel book about China called Jade Pork. The drafts are primarily typescripts, although there are some handwritten sections and corrections included. There are often multiple copies and versions of individual stories and novel sections. The works are arranged alphabetically by title.
Subseries B., Short Works, contains drafts and tearsheets of short stories, poetry, and short non-fiction pieces.
The journals and notepads in Subseries C. represent the early drafts and include notes for many of Katz's works. The notebooks contain story ideas, draft sections, and journal entries and are arranged in rough chronological order, although there are a number of undated journals. Along with the undated notebooks the collection contains the yellow legal pads Katz used while writing early longhand drafts of his works. These notepads do not have titles or dates, and are arranged in the order in which they were received.
Series II. Correspondence is divided into two subseries: A. Family Letters; and B. Personal and Professional. Subseries A. includes many letters sent by Katz and his wife Pat to his mother during the late 1950s when he was working on his first (unpublished) novels, and the early 1960s while the family lived in Italy and Katz taught at various universities and army bases. Also present are letters sent by his father to his mother.
Subseries B. Personal and Professional contains correspondence from his agents, including Lurton Blassingame and Georges Borchardt, as well as correspondence from other writers, artists, and personal friends. Of note is a letter written by VĂ©ra Nabokov for Vladimir Nabokov, who was a professor at Cornell during Katz's time as a student. Some of the authors and artists represented are A. R. Ammons, Peter Dean, B. H. Friedman, Jerome Klinkowitz, Harold Schimmel, Primarosa Cesarini Sforza, Ron Sukenick, and Richard tum Suden. These files are filed alphabetically by last name. Katz also kept a large amount of miscellaneous correspondence, some of which was labeled with titles such as "Friendly fire," and "Friendly fun." These files were placed at the end of the alphabetical files and are arranged roughly by date. The correspondence in these files is primarily from friends and acquaintances, some of whom may be represented in the alphabetical files; there are some career-related materials present as well.
The materials in Series III. Personal and Career-Related contain professional awards, reviews of Katz's works, and photographs. The photographs include several folders of pictures taken for an "aborted car photograph piece," Katz in his Boy Scout uniform, and slides taken on family vacations to Spirit Lake at Mt. St. Helens, and Ashland, Oregon, in the late 1950s. Also included are Katz's diploma from Cornell University, and reading announcements.
Series IV. Works of Others includes works by friends, colleagues, and students, such as Mark Leyner, as well as interviews with and works about Katz. Also present are notebooks containing an apparent autobiography written by his father, Alexander Katz, and one folder with drawings by Katz's youngest son, Rafael.

Books and audio recordings received with the collection have been transferred to the appropriate departments within the Ransom Center.