Guide to the Papers of Alex Miller


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Manuscript Name Papers of Alex Miller
Manuscript Number MSS 318
Last Updated April 2007
Extent 42 boxes
Location Academy Library, UNSW Canberra
Abstract The collection includes correspondence, drafts, notes, notebooks, research material and photographs. The papers provide an extensive record of Miller's works, dating from his poetry and prose writings at University in the 1960s.

Scope and Content

The papers of Alex Miller include correspondence, manuscript and typescript drafts, notes, notebooks, research material, newspaper clippings, posters and photographs.

The collection provides an extensive record of Miller's works, dating from his poetry and prose writings at University in the 1960s. Early papers in the collection reflect Miller's interest in and involvement with the performing arts, particularly the Melbourne theatre scene in the 1970s to early 1980s. The collection includes correspondence, drafts and working papers for the dramas Kitty Howard (1978), Exiles (1981) 'Armageddon is next Wednesday' [1984], and 'Getting back to what' [1984]. There is also comprehensive documentation regarding the development and publication of the novels Watching the climbers on the mountain (1988), The Tivington Nott (1989), The ancestor game (1992) and The sitters (1995).

The correspondence documents Miller's writing and publishing activities from 1971 to 1995. Among the major correspondents are Susie Boisjoux, Victor Bonham-Carter, Katharine Brisbane, Judith Brown, Colin Campbell, Kathy Colman, Robert Connell, Helen Daniel, Jim Davidson, Marie Davison, Morag Fraser, John Gatford, Kris Hemensley, Elizabeth Jolley, Nicholas Jose, Nancy Keesing, Thomas Keneally, Judith Lukin-Amundsen, Caroline Lurie, Ian MacPhee, Jean-Pierre Mignon, Anne Millar, Ray Mooney, Dinny O'Hearn, Michael Ondaatje, Chien-hsing Pao, Annette Potts, Barrett Reid, Andrew Riemer, Thomas Shapcott, Sharon Shostak, Arlene Sykes, Janette Turner-Hospital and Ouyang Yu.

 

Organization

The series arrangement of this collection has been artificially created by Special Collections staff.

Biographical Note

Alexander McPhee Miller was on 27 December 1936 in London, England. As a child Alexander McPhee Miller lived in south London, the son of an Irish mother and a Scottish father, whose background he has described as 'culturally rich'. Before migrating alone to Australia when he was seventeen years old he worked on a farm in the west of England. Then, after working as itinerant stockman on cattle stations in Central Queensland and the Gulf Country and travelling around Australia, he studied History and English at the University of Melbourne, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in 1965. Miller completed a Diploma of Education at the Melbourne State College in 1975, and he began teaching a writing course at Brunswick Technical School the following year. He had started writing poetry when he was twenty-two. He has also worked as an art dealer, farmer and public servant.

Miller was the inaugural writer-in-residence at the Australian Nouveau Theatre, 1981, co-founder of the Anthill Theatre and a founding member of the Melbourne Writers' Theatre, 1982. He has taught the prose writing course at Holmesglen College of TAFE, Victoria, since 1986, and was Visiting Fellow at La Trobe University 1994 -1995. Miller writes full-time and lives in the Victorian country town of Castlemaine.

Miller has been awarded:
Melbourne Prize, Melbourne Prize for Literature, 2006: finalist
Australia Council Grants, Awards and Fellowships, Literature Board Fellowship, 2004. Note: Monetary value of $80,000 Centenary Medal. Note: For service to Australian society and literature
Miles Franklin Literary Award, 2006: longlisted for Prochownik's dream 
State Library of Tasmania People's Choice Award, 2005: winner for Journey to the stone country 
Tasmania Pacific Region Prize, Tasmania Pacific Fiction Prize, 2005: shortlisted for Journey to the stone country 
One Book One Brisbane, 2004: shortlisted for Journey to the stone country 
Festival Awards for Literature (SA), Dymocks Booksellers Award for Fiction, 2004: shortlisted for Journey to the stone country 
The Age Book of the Year Award, Fiction Prize, 2003: shortlisted for Journey to the stone country 
New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards, Christina Stead Prize for Fiction, 2003: shortlisted for Journey to the stone country 
Miles Franklin Literary Award, 2003: winner for Journey to the stone country 
Colin Roderick Award, 2002: shortlisted for Journey to the stone country 
New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards, Christina Stead Prize for Fiction, 2001: winner for Conditions of faith 
Miles Franklin Literary Award, 1996: shortlisted for The sitters 
Commonwealth Writers Prize, Overall Best Book Award, 1993: winner for The ancestor game 
NBC Banjo Awards, NBC Banjo Award for Fiction, 1993: shortlisted for The ancestor game 
Miles Franklin Literary Award, 1993: winner for The ancestor game 
FAW Barbara Ramsden Award for the Book of the Year, 1992: joint winner for The ancestor game 
Braille Book of the Year Award, 1990: winner for The Tivington Nott.

Miller's published novels include:
Watching the climbers on the mountain (1988)
The Tivington Nott (1989)
The ancestor game (1992)
The sitters (1995)
Conditions of faith (2000)
Journey to the stone country (2002)
Prochownik's dream (2005).

He has written four plays, including:
Kitty Howard (1978)
Exiles (1981)
'Armageddon is next Wednesday' [1984]
'Getting back to what' [1984].

His short stories and essays have featured in numerous periodicals, including The AgeAustralian Book ReviewH/EARKunapipiMeanjinMeridianOverland and Quadrant, as well as several short story anthologies.

References:
AustLit : The Resource for Australian Literature, February 2007.

 

 

Administrative Information

 

Restrictions on Use

No copying is permitted without the permission of the copyright owners.

 

Preferred Citation

Papers of Alex Miller, Academy Library, UNSW Canberra, Australian Defence Force Academy, MS 318, Series [Number], Folder [Number].

 

Provenance

The collection was acquired from Alex Miller in May 1994 and August 1996.

Access Terms

 Consult the Curator. 

Personal Names

Miller, Alex, 1936- -- Archives.

 

Topical Subjects

Authors, Australian -- 20th century -- Archives.

Australian literature -- 20th century.

 

Occupations

Authors

Series List and Descriptions

 

Series 1 Correspondence, 1971-1995

This series includes correspondence with Australian and overseas publishers, theatre companies and literary figures, regarding publication or production of Miller's works from Kitty Howard (1978) to The sitters (1995). There is also personal correspondence with family, friends and other writers.

The earlier correspondence reflects Miller's involvement with the Melbourne theatre scene in the 1970s to early 1980s, including the formation of the Australian Nouveau Theatre, 1981, and the Melbourne Writers' Theatre, 1982. The correspondence with the Literature Board of the Australia Council, 1978-1994, documents Miller's attempts to obtain recognition and financial support for his writing. The extensive correspondence with Kris Hemensley includes discussion of philosophy, theatre, poetry, the literary magazine H/EAR and respective writing projects, together with several manuscript and typescript drafts of poetry and prose by both writers. There is also correspondence relating to Miller's work at the Holmesglen College of TAFE, including contact with Janette Turner-Hospital and Elizabeth Jolley regarding a series of Master Classes for Miller's writing students.

The correspondence is arranged alphabetically within each folder.

Box 1

Folder 1 
General correspondence, 1971-1979
Including Angus and Robertson, Nancy Austin, Australia Council for the Arts, Australian Association for the Teaching of English, Cassell Australia, Collins, Jim Davidson, Gold Star Publications, John Griffin, Hodder and Stoughton, Macmillan, Melbourne Theatre Company, Stephen Murray-Smith, Nation ReviewQuadrant, South Australian Theatre Company, Arlene Sykes, Thomas Nelson (Australia) and William Collins (UK), together with a manuscript and typescript poem by Miller 'A letter from a working man to the Socialist intellectuals' (3 p.)

Folder 2 
General correspondence, 1979-1985 
Including the Australia Council for the Arts, Australian Broadcasting Company (ABC) Radio, Australian Nouveau Theatre (ANT), Katharine Brisbane, Brisbane Repertory's La Boite Theatre, Robert Connell, Downtown Community Television (New York), Jack Hibberd, Melbourne Theatre Company, Jean-Pierre Mignon, The Mill Theatre Company, Peter Molnar, Ray Mooney, Nimrod Theatre Company, Bruce Pascoe, Playbox Theatre Company, Scripsi, South Australian Theatre Company, Arlene Sykes, Women Australia and Yackandandah Playscripts, together with a typescript draft by Miller 'Politicisation or culturation?' (2 p.)

Folder 3 
General correspondence, 1986-1988 
Including Bernie [?], Caroline [?], Lois Ellis, Liz [Haltt?], Ray Mooney, Annette Potts and Hiro Tokita, together with a typescript copy of Jim Davidson's review of The enigma of arrival (1987) by V.S. Naipaul

Folder 4 
General correspondence, 1989-1990 
Including Eve Addis, Susie Boisjoux, Louise Crewe, Dan [?], John Gatford, Liz [Haltt?], Kris Hemensley, Anna Kannava, Ken [?], Ian MacPhee, Margot [?], Jane Meredith, Michael [?], Ray Mooney, Dinny O'Hearn, Annette Potts, Sharon Shostak and Arlene Sykes, together with ANT News, no. 29, November 1990

Folder 5 
General correspondence, 1991-1994 
Including Graham Anderson, Judith Brown, Kathy Colman, Teresa Cannon, Helen Daniel, Peter Davis, Heather and Alan Day, Fiona [?], Morag Fraser, John Gatford, Liz [Haltt?], Kris Hemensley, Karen [?], Judith Lukin-Amundsen, Caroline Lurie, Autumn Mooney, Therese Mulcahy, Annette Potts, Barrett Reid, Sharon Shostak, Mamie Smith and Katharine Sturak

Folder 6 
General literary correspondence, 1978-1991 
Including Marie Davison, Geoffrey Dutton, Penny Hueston, Nancy Keesing, Paul Lindsey, Finola Moorhead, Phil P. and Annette Potts

Folder 7 
General literary correspondence, 1992 
Including Margaret Betts, Ruth Blatt, Susie Boisjoux, Melissa Bruce, Ian C., Brian Castro, Julian Davies, Morag Fraser, Julie Goodall, Joan Grant, Andrew Hamilton, Paul Lindsey, Morag Loh, Judith Lukin-Amundsen, Annabelle Murray-Smith, Max Nicholson, Phil P., Society of Editors, Lachlan Strahan, Brian Symons and Abigail Trout, together with a typescript draft copy of Thomas Shapcott's review of The ancestor game (1992) for Overland, no. 128

Folder 8 
General literary correspondence, 1993-1994 
Including Debra Adelaide, Ken Armstrong, Roz Berrystone, Margaret Betts, Judith Brown, Paul Carter, Maria Caucci, James [Chaney?], Kathy Colman, Bryony Cosgrove, Helen Daniel, Joyce Evans, Alan Hollinghurst, Mette Jorgensen, Thomas Keneally, Caroline Lurie, Barry Oakley, Michael Ondaatje, Peter [?], Annette Potts, Craig Robertson, Nicholas [Shakespeare?], Thomas Shapcott, Linda Spalding, Barry Watts, Sandy Webster, Peter Wigg and Ouyang Yu

Box 2

Folder 9-11 
Correspondence with the Literature Board, Australia Council for the Arts, 1978-1994

Folder 12-14 
Correspondence regarding the Australian Nouveau Theatre (ANT), 1980-1981 
Including R.G. Ansett, Australia Council for the Arts, Australian Elizabethan Theatre Trust, Joan Baixas, Andrew Bell, Tim Gooding, Alma de Groen, Wayne Maddern, Jean-Pierre Mignon, Elizabeth Raupach, Gregory Schiemer, Small Business Development Corporation, Phil Taylor and Carl Vine

Folder 15 
Correspondence, 1982, regarding 'Getting back to what' [1984]

Folder 16 
Correspondence with Colin Campbell regarding The Tivington Nott (1989), 1982-1989

Box 3

Folder 17-21 
Correspondence regarding The Tivington Nott (1989), 1982-1991 
Including Alfred A. Knopf (NY), Allison and Busby (UK), André Deutsch (UK), Victor Bonham-Carter, Chatto and Windus (UK), Doubleday (NY), E. Chalmers Hallam (UK), Gaston Renard Fine and Rare Books, Hale (UK), Hamish Hamilton (UK), John and Judith Head (UK), Ian Hicks, Inspector of Foreign Dividends (UK), Caroline Lurie, Macmillan, McPhee Gribble, Michael Joseph (UK), New South Wales Central Mapping Authority and Ordnance Survey, Pan Books, Penguin, Annette Potts, Princeton Books, Peter Robinson, Tessa Sayle (UK) and Jane Sullivan

Folder 22-23 
Correspondence regarding Watching the climbers on the mountain (1988) and The Tivington Nott (1989), 1986-1990 
Including Jennifer Dabbs, Penny Hueston, Caroline Lurie, Margaret McCluskey, Dinny O'Hearn and Pan Books

Box 4

Folder 24-26 
Correspondence regarding The ancestor game (1992), 1987-1995 
Including Australian Chinese Writers' Association (Melbourne), Nicholas Jose, Annabelle Murray-Smith, Chien-hsing Pao, Yeh-ching Pao, Li Yao, Ouyang Yu and Huang Yuanshen

Folder 27 
Congratulations regarding the Miles Franklin Award,1993 
Including Rick and Meg Amor, Caroline Askew, Australia Council for the Arts, Australian Society of Authors, Elaine Bell, Carmel Bird, Alison Broinowski, John Button, Brian Castro, Paul Clark, Janet Cronin, Jennifer Dabbs, Helen Daniel, Jim Davidson, Liam Davison, Stephen Dillon, Garry Disher, Marie Dumais, Hazel Edwards, Helen Elliott, Barry Fitzgibbon, Morag Fraser, Robin Gerster, Andrew Hamilton, John Harvey, Kris Hemensley, Elizabeth Jolley, Cathy Littlejohn, Ian MacPhee, Mary Marshall, Fiona Nelson, Penguin, Craig Robertson, David Shennan, Sharon Shostak, Abigail Trout and Helen Waddell

Folder 28 
Congratulations regarding the Miles Franklin Award,1993 
Including Gordie Alexander, Pat Bow, Melissa Bruce, Margaret Calder, Helen and Fred Dormer, Fellowship of Australian Writers (Victoria), Julie Goodall, Denise Higgins, Susan Keogh, Andrea King, The Lyceum Readers, Ian McLeod, David Morris, Annabelle Murray-Smith, Nola [?], Phil P., Annette Potts, Robin [?] and Peta Sloley

Folder 29-31 
Correspondence with Kris Hemensley, 1981-1992 
Including manuscript and typescript poems by Miller and Hemensley, together with a typescript draft extract (6 p.) from The ancestor game (1992)

Folder 32 
Correspondence with Elizabeth Jolley, 1988-1993, Janette Turner Hospital, 1988-1993, Andrew Riemer, 1992, and Michael Ondaatje, 1994

Folder 33 
Correspondence with Barrett Reid, 1989-1992

 

Series 2 Novels

This series comprises notes, notebooks, research material and manuscript and typescript drafts for Watching the climbers on the mountain (1988), The Tivington Nott (1989), The ancestor game (1992) and The sitters (1995). The drafts are often extensively annotated and edited. The notes, notebooks and research material reveal the depth of Miller's preparation and research, particularly for The ancestor game, which draws on Chinese culture, history and mythology. Correspondence regarding development and publication of the novels is included in Series 1.

2.1 Watching the climbers on the mountain (1988)

Comprising typescript drafts together with a paperback copy of the novel, which was published by Pan Books, Sydney, 1988.

Box 6

Folder 1-2 
Typescript and annotated typescript drafts (2), 209 p.

Folder 3 
Paperback copy of Watching the climbers on the mountain (1988), signed by the author

2.2 The Tivington Nott (1989)

Comprising notebooks, notes, research material and manuscript and typescript drafts. The Tivington Nott was published by Hale, London, 1989, and reprinted by Penguin in 1993.

Folder 1-2 
Newspaper clippings and research material

Box 7

Folder 3 
Notebook and notes; manuscript draft fragment, 11 p., December 1982

Folder 4-8 
Typescript and annotated typescript early drafts and draft fragments; notes and research material c. 1983-1985

Box 8

Folder 9 
'Before Winsford meet' and 'My room' annotated typescript draft fragments, February 1985

Folder 10-11 
'Winsford meet' annotated manuscript and typescript draft fragments; annotated manuscript and typescript first draft

Folder 12 
'Through Aut-Wint', 'Run and death' and 'Leaving' annotated manuscript and typescript draft fragments

Box 9

Folder 13 
'Jimmy Diamond' typescript synopsis, c. 1985

Folder 14-16 
Typescript and annotated typescript drafts (3), 152 p., 1988

Folder 17 
Notes and promotional material relating to the launch, 1989

Folder 18-19 
Hardback copies (2) of The Tivington Nott (Hale, 1989), one marked with corrections for the Penguin edition, 1993

 

Box 10

Folder 20 
Page proofs, Penguin edition

Folder 21 
Paperback copy of The Tivington Nott (Penguin, 1993)

2.3 The ancestor game (1992)

Comprising correspondence, notebooks, notes, research material and manuscript and typescript drafts. The ancestor gamewas published by Penguin, Ringwood, Victoria, 1992. Photographs relating to the novel are included in Series 6.

Folder 1-2 
Notebooks (5); notes; research material and related correspondence, 1987

Folder 3-5 
Notes and research material

Box 11

Folder 6-9 
Notes and research material

Folder 10
'The journey man' annotated manuscript and typescript drafts, parts I-III 1987-1989

Box 12

Folder 10-12 
'The journey man' annotated manuscript and typescript drafts, parts I-III 1987-1989

Folder 13-15 
'The journey man' manuscript and typescript first drafts and draft fragments, 1987-1988

Box 13

Folder 16 
'The journey man' manuscript and typescript first drafts and draft fragments, 1987-1988

Folder 17 
'The ancestor game' (alternative titles 'The journey man', 'Mr Zoo' and 'A belief in the fish') annotated typescript first draft, 283 p.

Folder 18 
Annotated manuscript and typescript early draft fragments

Folder 19
Annotated manuscript and typescript second drafts and notes, 1989-1990

Box 14

Folder 20-22
Annotated manuscript and typescript second drafts and notes, 1989-1990

 

Box 15

Folder 23 
Typescript third draft photocopy, 314 p., April 1990

Folder 24 
Typescript draft, including endnotes (later omitted), 321 p.

Folder 25
Annotated manuscript and typescript draft, fourth draft of Part I, April-December 1990

Box 16

Folder 26-27 
Annotated manuscript and typescript draft, fourth draft of Part I, April-December 1990

Box 17

Folder 28-29 
Typescript draft fragments and notes, final revision, March-July 1991

Folder 30
Annotated typescript final drafts

Box 18

31-32 
Annotated typescript final drafts

Folder 33
Annotated galley proofs

Box 19

Folder 34 
Annotated galley proofs

Folder 35-36 
Annotated page proofs

Folder 37 
'Putting together The ancestor game' annotated typescript, 5 p.; typescript notes for an address to the Fellowship of Australian Writers, October 1991

Folder 38 
Manuscript and typescript notes regarding the process of writing The ancestor game, including 'Regions of uncertainty' annotated typescript, 4 p., and notes for an address to the National Book Council, 1992

2.4 The sitters (1995)

Comprising notebooks, notes, research material and manuscript and typescript drafts for The sitters, published by Viking, Ringwood, Victoria, 1995.

Folder 1 
'The horse camp party' notes, annotated typescript, 2 p.; 'Love in pursuit of the painter', manuscript photocopy, 3 p.

Folder 2 
Notes; research material; manuscript and typescript draft fragments, February-August 1993

Box 20

Folder 3 
Notebooks (2); research material; 'Masking the portrait' annotated typescript draft, 19 p.; manuscript and typescript draft fragments

Folder 4-6 
Notes; 'Portrait of a woman' manuscript and typescript first draft fragments; annotated typescript first drafts (2); 'Portrait' annotated typescript second draft, p. 1-22, February-April 1993

Box 21

Folder 7 
'Portrait' typescript second draft, 217 p., June-July 1993

Folder 8-9 
'Portrait' annotated typescript draft, p. 23-217; 'Masking the portrait' annotated typescript draft, p. 145-151; annotated typescript third and fourth draft, 203 p., September 1993

Folder 10-11 
'Beauty and the beast' annotated typescript third draft, 50 p.; manuscript and typescript fourth draft fragments and notes, March-April 1994

Folder 12
'The sitters' (alternative titles 'Beauty and the beast', 'Portrait of a stranger', 'Against the dream' and 'The secret story') annotated typescript drafts and draft fragments, 1994

Box 22

Folder 13-17 
'The sitters' (alternative titles 'Beauty and the beast', 'Portrait of a stranger', 'Against the dream' and 'The secret story') annotated typescript drafts and draft fragments, 1994

Folder 18-20 
Annotated typescript draft photocopy, 117 p.; annotated typescript penultimate draft, 117 p.; annotated typescript final draft, 117 p., November 1994

Box 23

Folder 21-22 
Galley proofs (2 sets), January 1995

Folder 23 
Partial mock-up

Series 3 Dramas

This series includes correspondence, notes, research material, newspaper clippings, typescript drafts, posters and other promotional material for Kitty Howard (1978), Exiles (1981), 'Armageddon is next Wednesday' [1984] and 'Getting back to what' [1984]. The bulk of the correspondence regarding development and production of the dramas is included in Series 1, together with correspondence relating to Miller's association with the Melbourne Writers' Theatre and the Australian Nouveau Theatre.

3.1 Kitty Howard (1978)

Comprising correspondence and typescript drafts for Miller's first drama, Kitty Howard, which was directed by Max Cullen for the Melbourne Theatre Company, May 1978.

Folder 1 
Annotated typescript draft, 134 p., together with a letter from Miller to the Women's Liberation Movement, 1978

Folder 2 
Typescript photocopy, 134 p.

3.2 Exiles (1981)

Comprising correspondence, notes, research material, typescript drafts, newspaper clippings, posters and other promotional material. Exiles was directed by Jean-Pierre Mignon for the Australian Nouveau Theatre (ANT), Melbourne, July-August 1981. A photograph of a scene from the play is included in Series 6.

Folder 1 
Annotated typescript and typescript photocopy drafts; research material

Box 24

Folder 2 
Annotated typescript and typescript photocopy drafts; research material

Folder 3 
'Exiles' (alternative title 'The hunted') annotated typescript draft photocopy, 73 p.; typescript synopsis, 2 p.

Folder 4-7 
Annotated typescript and typescript photocopy drafts (4); 'The dialogues' annotated typescript draft, 37 p.

Folder 8 
Notes; published working draft of script used in the Australian Nouveau Theatre production; letter from the Lighthouse State Theatre Company of South Australia, 1982

Folder 9 
Notes, posters and other promotional material, 1981-1982

Folder 10
Newsletters, newspaper clippings and photocopies of reviews, 1981

Box 25

Folder 11 
Newsletters, newspaper clippings and photocopies of reviews, 1981

3.3 'Armageddon is next Wednesday' [1984]

Comprising manuscript and typescript drafts for 'Armageddon is next Wednesday', which was given a rehearsed reading at a Melbourne Writers' Theatre workshop, July 1984.

Folder 1 
Annotated typescript first draft, 32 p., November 1976; annotated typescript photocopy second and third draft, 50 p.

Folder 2 
Annotated typescript photocopy draft, 65 p.; 'The wedding ending' typescript photocopy draft, p. 48-50

Folder 3-4 
Typescript and annotated typescript drafts (3), 60 p.; Scene 1 typescript drafts (2), 11 p.; Scene 2 annotated manuscript and typescript draft; La Mama Newsletter, no. 12, May 1984

3.4 'Getting back to what' [1984]

Comprising manuscript and typescript drafts of 'Getting back to what', which was given a rehearsed reading at a Melbourne Writers' Theatre workshop, 1984.

Folder 1
Annotated typescript drafts (3), 1982; manuscript and typescript draft fragments and notes

Box 26

Folder 2 
Annotated typescript drafts (3), 1982; manuscript and typescript draft fragments and notes

Folder 3-4 
Annotated typescript draft photocopies (4), 49 p., September-October 1984

 

Series 4 Short Stories

This small series comprises typescript drafts for eight of Miller's short stories. 'Comrade Pawel' was first published in Meanjin, 1975. 'How to kill wild horses' was first published in Quadrant, 1976, and featured in the short story collection The blindfold horse and other stories (ed. John Griffin, 1976). Earlier drafts and notes for 'Manuka' and 'Recollections of an Australian traitor' are included in Series 5.

Folder 1 
Annotated typescript and typescript photocopy drafts of 'Comrade Pawel' and 'How to kill wild horses', together with Meanjin reader's comments, 1 p.

Folder 2 
Annotated typescript and typescript photocopy drafts of 'Manuka', 'The move', 'The search for Bluey', 'Hanging on', 'Weekend' and 'Recollections of an Australian traitor'

 

Series 5 Miscellaneous Writings, 1960s-1981

This series includes correspondence, notes, research material and manuscript and typescript drafts of Miller's unpublished poetry and prose. The writings date from the 1960s to the early 1980s, and include essays and papers written by Miller for his Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Melbourne. There are also drafts of short stories, including early versions of several short stories found in Series 4.

Folder 1 
Manuscript and typescript university essays and notes, c. 1960s

Folder 2 
Manuscript and typescript drafts of unpublished poetry and prose, c. 1960s, together with correspondence, 1967-1971, including the Australian National University, Bruce [?] and L. Rees

Box 27

Folder 3 
Manuscript and typescript drafts of unpublished poetry and prose, c. 1960s, together with correspondence, 1967-1971, including the Australian National University, Bruce [?] and L. Rees

Folder 4-5 
Manuscript and typescript drafts of unpublished poetry and prose, c. 1970s-early 1980s, together with related correspondence, 1977-1981, including John [?], Mattoid and Poetry Australia

Folder 6 
Notes and research material relating to an unfinished piece on Benjamin Boyd (1803?-1851)

 

Series 6 Photographs, 1970-1994

This series comprises a small number of miscellaneous photographs, including a photograph of a scene from Exiles (1981), and photographs of a party celebrating the success of The ancestor game (1992).

Box 28 (AV)

Folder 1 

Photographs (24) taken at a party to celebrate publication of The ancestor game (1992); 
Photographs (2) of a red brick building; 
Photograph of Alex Miller being interviewed by Louise Carlines in her office, 27 July 1992; 
Photograph of Mr Warwick Smith and others; 
Photographs (2) of trees near Somerset, Tasmania, January 1994; 
Photograph of irrigation sprays; 
Photograph of a pump; 
Photograph of the kitchen of the farmhouse at Araluen, 1970; 
Photograph of Tiriel Mora and Alorange in Exiles (1981)

 

 

Series 7 Correspondence, research materials, notes, drafts.

Box 29

Folder 1

Correspondence: Letters and submissions to Anthill Theatre, December 1980-February 1981, with submission for financial assistance (1981), article by G.J. Burchall, ‘Anthill Theatre – Breaking the Mould’, and Samuel Beckett promotional material;Australian Playwrights’ Theatre, November 1981 – January 1983.
 
Folder 2
Correspondence: 1993 Commonwealth Writers Prize, August 1993 – February 1994, with congratulatory cards, personal schedule, article for The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, Gala Awards Dinner booklet, Public Reading notification/poster for 2nd November 1993;Letters, internal memos and brief notes concerning ‘Correspondence for Vibia Perpetua Novel’, July 1991 – October 1994;Anna Rutherford correspondence, November 1993 – June 1994;World Chinese Writers’ Association Congress correspondence. 

Folder 3
Correspondence: John and Ruth Lewis correspondence, August 1994 – February 2000; Saul Vierer correspondence, March-July 1998; Sahiba correspondence, January-November 1999; Consulate of the Republic of Tunisia [Alex Miller’s visit for 24-28 September 1994], 28 May – 18 October 1994; Letters concerning final draft of Journey to the Stone Country and proposed book called Col, October 1997 – October 2004, including draft synopsis of Col (1999) and Anita Heis’s notes on Journey to the Stone Country (undated). 

Folder 4
Correspondence: Ouyang Yu correspondence, December 1995; May-June 1999;Commonwealth Writers’ Festival correspondence, July 1998;Ray Mooney-related correspondence, November 1999; with Ray Mooney, ‘The So-Called Ethics of Fleapit Journalism’ (1999) and newspaper attachments; Publication, academic and personal-related letters, memos, faxes, typed and handwritten correspondence for February 1991 – October 1994;Publication, academic and personal-related letters, memos, faxes, typed and handwritten correspondence for April-December 1995, including a letter from Les Murray (poet), dated 27 July, 1995.

Folder 5
Correspondence: Publication, academic and personal-related letters, memos, faxes, typed and handwritten correspondence for January-December 1996.

Folder 6
Correspondence: Publication, academic and personal-related letters, memos, faxes, typed and handwritten correspondence for January-November 1997;Publication, academic and personal-related letters, memos, faxes, typed and handwritten correspondence for January-December 1998.

Folder 7
Correspondence: Publication, academic and personal-related letters, memos, faxes, typed and handwritten correspondence for January 1999 - February 2000;Undated publication, academic and personal-related letters, memos, faxes, typed and handwritten correspondence (1990s).

 

Box 30

Folder 8
Correspondence: Collections of dated and undated postcards and birthday/greetings/Christmas cards, etc. sent to Alex Miller during the 1990s from around the world. 

Box 31

Folder 9
Kitty Howard (1978); Exiles (1981); Getting Back to What (1984):Cast list, reviews and commentaries on the play directed by Max Cullen and starring Julia Blake in the title role;Play description, reviews, flyers/brochures and associated materials, APG Newsletter (1980), Theatre, vol. 6, no. 1 (September, 1981);Script for ‘Getting Back to What’ (August, 1984).

Folder 10
Armageddon is Next Wednesday (1984): Five copies of this play with various annotations, and with variations in the title: also known as ‘Armageddon’ and ‘The Last Great Australian’.

 

Folder 11
The Sitters (1995): ‘Masking the Portrait’ – early draft of ‘The Sitters’ (203 pages, undated); ‘The Sitter’ (108 pages, undated); File: ‘Materials relating The Sitters’:Correspondence, mainly Penguin Books Australia Ltd., May 1994 – August 1996;Assortment of postcards, QANTAS plane tickets, notes; Note about the authorPromotional brochures, mock-up galleys of posters; ‘The Sitters’ RSVP guest list;Excerpt from ‘The Sitters’ for April 95 ABR. 

Box 32

Folder 12
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: First draft organised into 4 numbered files that correlate to Parts 1-4, with summaries on each file cover of what is in each part of the chapter, plot points, number of pages, etc.

Folder 13
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: Second draft begun on 12 July and finished 11 December 1996, 390 pages.
 
Folder 14
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: Third draft finished 4 July 1997, 430 pages. 

 

Box 33

Folder 15
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: Second or third draft that may be ‘a redraft of the 3rd draft’, October 1997, 447 pages. 

 
Folder 16
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: Complete set of working papers for the third draft, October 19-December 31, 1997, various pagination.

 

Box 34

Folder 17
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: Version of book before sending to Sarah McGrath for second edits, and after author’s revisions with her primary edits (undated, 387 pages).

 
Folder 18
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: Fifth draft: ‘The draft before the final draft’ according to the author on the cover page (August 1998, 392 pages). 
 
Folder 19
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: Sixth and final draft, written between 3 August and 25 November, 1998, 411 pages. 

 

Box 35

Folder 20
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: Final draft sent for the second round of edits to Sarah McGrath, and completed by author on 10 August, 1998 (387 pages).

 
Folder 21
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Literary Drafts: Galley proofs version (December, 1999, 351 pages) with suggested final changes attached.
 
Folder 22
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Research Materials: Files numbered 1-5 and additional non-numbered files that deal with themes such as history of the early Christian Church, nature of religion, Tunisia, development of ideas for the book and certain chapters and characters, Chartres, materials not needed, Anton, novel off-cuts; each file has a detailed summary on its cover of the work contained therein. 

 

Box 36

Folder 23
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Research Materials:Files titled as follows: ‘George’s Clydeside Story...Essential’ - ‘Conditions of Faith Research Notes’ – ‘Conditions Superseded Material. Synposes etc. (early)’ – ‘Dates. Personal Histories and key dates’ – ‘Notes Before “I” [The Perpetua Story]’ – ‘Maria Hallandal. The Forgotten Child’ – ‘Draft II. Interpolations’ – ‘Final Draft. Notes. Acknowledgements’ – ‘Reading’ – ‘Antoine et Louie in Tunis etc.’. 

Folder 24
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Research Materials: Files titled as follows: ‘Antoine Carpeaux’s home in Paris’ - ‘Volume II: Perpetua Novel Draft I’ – ‘Carthage – synoptic history; El Djem – re games and amphitheatre [superseded]’.

Folder 25
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Research Materials: Files titled as follows: ‘Return to Tunisia. Eucharistic Congress’ – ‘Georges in Paris. With Folder 3’ – ‘Draft Vol. II. The Beasts. “Notes” and Beginnings 9/9/92 Perpetua’; Note book: ‘Tunis – Alex Miller 1990 Novel Tunisia’. 

Box 37

Folder 26
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Research Materials: A pre-draft of Conditions of Faith to July 1995, 180 pages; File titled ‘Journey to Dougga 1930. Last section of book’, with the following booklets:Tunisian National Tourist Office, Tunisia Hammamet Nabeul (1980s?);Tunisian National Tourist Office, Tunisia: The coral coast from Bizerta to Tabarka (1986); Tunisian National Tourist Office, Monastir: Tunisia (1980s?); Tunisian National Tourist Office, Tunisia: Sousse (1980s?); Untitled sheaf of typed pages and handwritten notes, with ‘Transcultural Group Analysis: The Foundation Matrix and The Stranger (Introductory talk for workshop in Melbourne, March 1996)’. 

 
Folder 27
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Research Materials: Untitled sheaf of research notes, annotated prose, ‘Italia’ correspondence (August, 1994), handwritten jottings, ideas, etc.
 
Folder 28
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Note Books: Spirax brand notebooks of various sizes:Series no. 541 has the following cover titles: ’30 May 95’ – ’17 Oct, 95’ – ‘24/8/97’ – ‘Christmas 97’ – ‘Feb 98 Conditions’ – ’24-3-98 Conditions’ – ‘Alex Miller + Kate Miller’;Series no. 564 has the following cover titles: ’18.2.98 Conditions’ – untitled; Series no. 563 has the following cover title: ‘Conditions – Notes’; Hilroy brand note book with diary entries beginning on 8 June, 1994;Olympic Stripe band note book – untitled. 
 
Folder 29
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Maps and Guides: ‘Map of Tunis’ (1983); Carthage, Tunisia (1980s?); Tunisian National Tourist Office, Sbeitla, Tunisia (1993); Tunisian National Tourist Office, The Medina of Tunis (1993). 
 
Folder 30
Conditions of Faith (2000) – Reviews: Reviews of Conditions of Faith following its publication in 2000. 
 
Folder 31
Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Literary Drafts: ‘Draft One’, August 1999 – December 2000. 

 

Box 38

Folder 32
Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Literary Drafts: Draft two, January 2001 according to the cover page of ‘Draft One’.

 
Folder 33
Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Literary Drafts: ‘Stone Country Early draft material’ (undated, 292 pages). 
 
Folder 34
Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Literary Drafts: Final draft, unedited (June 2001, 280 pages). 

 

Box 39

Folder 35

Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Literary Drafts: ‘Stone Country: A true story of our times’ - final draft with editing marks by Bruce Sims and author’s own changes (September-October, 2001, 412 pages).
 
Folder 36
Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Literary Drafts: ‘Journey to the Stone Country’ – possible final pre-publication version but no annotations to confirm this (undated, 279 pages, with additional pages: ‘Possible Readings, pp. 40-47’). 
 
Folder 37
Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Research Materials: Department of Family Services and Aboriginal and Islander Affairs, “Plain English Guide to the Native Title Bill” (December, 1993);E.J. Malone, Mount Coolon, Qld. Bureau of Mineral Resources, Geology and Geophysics (1969, repr. 1984);David Hopley (ed.),Geographical Studies of the Townsville Area. Monograph Series, Occasional Paper 2. Geography Department, James Cook University (1978);Urannah Properties Association Incorporated Inc. No. IA20409 (1999);Elizabeth Hatte and Gutha Bimbi Birri Gubba Nanhi Bura Aboriginal Corporation, An assessment of the cultural heritage values of the Foxleigh Coal Project Area, Central Queensland. CAML Coal Resources Pty. Ltd. (June, 1999);Birri Gubba Federation of Traditional Owners, Cultural Heritage Study including Archaelogical Assessment and Management Plan (January, 1997).


Box 40

 
Folder 38
Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Research Materials: Birri Gubba People, Urannah Pastoral Holding: Cultural Revival Social Survival and Economic Development [1999], no publication details;‘The Illustrated Burra Charter’ [book excerpt, pp. 7-9, with ‘The Australia ICOMOS [International Council on Monuments and Sites] Charter for the Conservation of Places of Cultural Significance (The Burra Charter)’ [book excerpt, pp. 69-81;Form 1. Native Title Act 1993: Application by a Person or Persons Claiming to Hold Native Title, Section 13 and 61 [Wiri/Yuwiburra/Birria/Jangga people] (1990s);Robert Downey Lawyers, ‘Corporations of Urannah Property Under the Associations Corporation Act’ [facsimile document] (March, 1999);Stephen Wegner, ‘Trip 7: Igneous Remnants of Permian Orogenic Association in the Townsville District: Rhyolithic Julago Volcanics (Many Peaks Range), and an Enclave-Rich Granite Intrusive Complex (Mount Stuart)’. Short Geological Field Trips, Townsville-Charters Towers [convention paper] (July, 1998). 

Folder 39

Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Research Materials: Research notes, typed and handwritten jottings, annotated articles, references, drafts for book sections, sketches, chapters, pages, etc., in a series of files: ‘Permissions “Stone Country” - ‘Jimmy Diamond. Originally a sequel [to?] second part [& TN?] ... Journey to the Stone Country. Precursor Material’ – ‘Mont [sic] Coolon’ – ‘XII Hubert Street’ – ‘1. Vertena 2. Stone Country’ – ‘Notes to parts already written. Useful references for the origins of certain things and connections that might get [illegible]’ – ‘Structure. Coll. Structure September 99. Notes’ – ‘Coll – Bibliography’. 

Folder 40

Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Note Books: Spirax brand notebooks of various sizes:Series no. 541 has the following cover titles: “Col” 2 30/7/99’ – ‘July 99 Col. Bibliography Notebook I’ – ‘untitled’;Series no. 561 has the following cover titles: ‘Col 9/1199’ – untitled;Series no. 564 has the following cover title: ‘5.7.98 Steph’s Birthday Wallace: The Malay Archipelago’;Series no. 560 has the following cover titles: ‘Paris I’ – ‘[Cournier?] Bk. 2’;Marbig B5-size note book with the following cover title: ‘July 99 Coll Qld’;Marbig A4-size note book with following cover title: “A” Coll. Back-up Disks to Steph’s Work 4/12/00 (up to p. 304)’. 

 
Folder 41

Journey to the Stone Country (2002) – Maps and Guides: ‘Urannah Queensland 8556, Department of Minerals and Energy (1973);‘Townsville & Thuringowa City’, UBD Map of Queesland (1999);‘Mount Coolon Queensland SF-55-7’ (1975);‘SF 55-8 Mackay Queensland’ Edition 1, Division of National Mapping (1984);‘Mount Coolon, Queensland Sheet SF 55-7’, Bureau of Mineral Resources, Geology and Geophysics, Dept. of National Development and Energy (1968);‘Amazing Central Queensland’, Government Printing Office, Brisbane (1984);‘Burdekin Catchment Study: Urannah Dam Site Ponded Area’, Dept. of Natural Resources (1999);Boundary map, based on excerpt from Norman Tindale’s research into Aboriginal tribes of Australia (c. 1938, published 1974) [faxed copy, fragile]. 

Folder 42
Australian Playwrights Theatre (APT) (early 1980s):  Papers on the establishment of the APT, with minutes, typed and handwritten proposals, joining fees, distribution lists, certificate of registration of business name (1981), etc. 

 

Box 41

Folder 43
World Chinese Writers’ Association Congress (1995): Papers on Alex Miller’s attendance at this meeting, including draft papers on ‘Impressions of China’, newspaper articles, business cards, symposium booklet (Chinese language).

 

Folder 44
Commonwealth Writers’ Prize (1997):Correspondence (July 1996 – May 1997) regarding Alex Miller’s attendance at the 10th anniversary the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize in London, with symposium folder, programme schedules,  brochures, pamphlets, invitations, itinerary updates, etc.;Carcanet Press material (1996) – contribution to Michael Schmidt’s anthology, an excerpt from The Sitters (1995).

 
Folder 45
Miscellaneous: Selection of prose and poems: Jonathan Slon, ‘On Top of the World’ – Allan Patience, ‘The Question of Love in a Hard Culture’ – [no author indicated], ‘Teaching Germaine Greer to Suck Eggs’ - [no author indicated], ‘Colin’s Story’ – [no author indicated], ‘Elder’ – Ouyang Yu, ‘The Chinese Mechanic (for Alex Miller), December 1996 – Alex Miller, ‘A Reading for the Melbourne Writers’ Theatre of Getting Back to What’ - [no author indicated], ‘Accents – Beverley Farmer, ‘Anna Hus’, 1995 – James Chang, ‘Penfriend’, 1995;Research material, notes, etc. for Journey to the Stone Country
 
Folder 46

Miscellaneous: Materials from a file titled ‘Miscellaneous – Press’: Newspaper articles, magazine reviews regarding books by Alex Miller, his Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, preservation of the site of Carthage, Barrett Reid obituaries, and his 1975 story ‘Comrade Pawel’;The Perambulator, no. 7 (1980).

 
Folder 47

Miscellaneous: File: ‘1. Sources 2. Books 3. Letters’: Bibliographies, handwritten research notes, references, jottings, contacts, etc., for Conditions of Faith; extensive notes on the file cover.

 

Box 42(AV)

 
Folder 48

Photographs and Recorded Material: El Djem, Tunisia 1995;More photos from Tunisia including the Dougga area, with Roman-era statuary, relics, mosaics, etc., 1995;Melbourne Chinese Community College Centre, October 1995;‘Crossing Cultures Symposium, November 6-10, 1995;Family-related and personal photographs with documentation on reverse sides;“Sweet Water” Urannah photographs, 1999;Alex Miller ID badge for Moranbah North Coal, July 1999.Audio-cassettes: (i) 1. Townsville trip, 31/7/99 (ii) 2. Townsville trip;Black unlabelled computer disc;‘Stone Country’ back-up discs, Parts 1-6 and Parts 7-13;‘Coll’ spare discs, nos. 1 and 2, and 3rd disc with torn label;‘Stone Country’ discs: ‘final draft sent to publishers 25.1.01; ‘final draft posted to publishers 25.1.01; ‘Parts 1-6 before my own and Bruce Sim’s edits’.