Guide to the Papers of Rory Barnes [MSS 055]

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Manuscript Name Papers of Rory Barnes
Manuscript Number MSS 055
Last Updated August 2021
Extent 34cm (3 boxes + 1 folio)
Location Special Collections, UNSW Canberra
Abstract Typescripts of "Valencies" and "Bomb-monger's daughter". Correspondence, scrapbooks

Collection Subject Type


Scope and Content

The collection comprises correspondence, drafts, reviews and other writings.

Date Range of Content


Biographical Note

Wikipedia article:

Keith Rory Barnes was born in London, England on the 11 March 1946. As a child, he lived in Africa, England and Norway before emigrating to Sydney with his family in 1956. He attended schools in Sydney and Canberra and graduated from Monash University with a B.A. (Hons).

Barnes has worked as a teacher, academic, book reviewer, farm hand, publisher's reader and freelance writer. In 1976-1977 he held the Australian Fellowship at the Creative Writing Centre, Stanford University and has been awarded a Literature Board Senior Fellowship.

Barnes has received the following awards for his work:
Aurealis Awards for Excellence in Australian Speculative Fiction, Young Adult Division, Best Novel, 2000: shortlisted for Horsehead soup
Aurealis Awards for Excellence in Australian Speculative Fiction, Science Fiction Division, Best Novel, 1999: shortlisted for The book of revelation
Aurealis Awards for Excellence in Australian Speculative Fiction, Young Adult Division, Best Novel, 1999: shortlisted for Horsehead man
Aurealis Awards for Excellence in Australian Speculative Fiction, Young Adult Division, Best Novel, 1999: shortlisted for Stuck in fast forward.

Rory Barnes is the author and co-author of several books including:
Teacher learning edited by Gwyneth Dow; with contributions from Rory Barnes ... [et al.] (1982)
Valencies co-written with Damien Broderick (1983)
The bomb-monger's daughter (1984)
Water from the moon co-written with James Birrell (1989)
Zones co-written with Damien Broderick (1997)
'Horsehead trilogy' including: Horsehead boy (1998), Horsehead man (1999) and Horsehead soup (2000)
The book of revelation co-written with Damien Broderick (1999)
Stuck in fast forward Damien Broderick and Rory Barnes (1999)
The hunger of time co-written with Damien Broderick, eReads (2003).

Rory Barnes Web home page ( 7/1/04)
AustLit Australian Literature Gateway database, July 2004.


Administrative Information


Access and Copying Conditions

Access: Check with Curator

Copying: Check with Curator

Preferred Citation

Papers of Rory Barnes, Special Collections, UNSW Canberra, Australian Defence Force Academy, Canberra, Box [Number], Folder [Number].


The collection was acquired by the Library from Rory Barnes in three consignments, 1988, 1992 and 1994.


Subject Keywords



Authors, Australian authors

Personal Names

Rory Barnes 1946-

Corporate Names





Container List


Box 1

Folder 1
Valencies - correspondence, contract and reviews, 1982-1986

Folder 2
'Gulf stream' - annotated typescript draft, 263 p., 1971-1973. This is the original novel used by Damien Broderick to write Valencies. Some of the material not used in Valencies was used in Transmitters : an imaginary documentary, 1969-1984 by Broderick (1984)

Folder 3
The bomb-monger's daughter - correspondence, contract and reviews, 1981-1987

Folder 4
The bomb-monger's daughter - notebook and sequence of events, 1979-1980

Folder 5
The bomb-monger's daughter - page proofs


Box 2

Folder 6
Water from the moon co-written with James Birrell - correspondence, book and film contracts, reader's report, editor's comments, reviews and promotional material, 1987-1991

Folder 7
Water from the moon - research material: report by James Birrell to the World Bank, annotated by Rory Barnes entitled 'Screening economic feasibility and derailed engineering for transmigration settlements in Central Sumatra' (July 1983), 222 p.

Folder 8
Water from the moon - annotated 1st typescript draft, 155 p., 21-22 March 1986

Folder 9
Water from the moon - typescript draft of final edited version with deleted material and publisher's instructions


Box 3

Folder 10
Book reviews by Barnes of Australian books for Adelaide's Radio 5UV radio programs Authors Proof and Writers' Radio, together with a typescript index, 1983-1991

Folder 11
Correspondence with Barnes and Julia Blackburn regarding the Australian research for Blackburn's book entitled Daisy Bates in the desert (1994), together with research transcripts by Barnes, 10 June 1991 - 11 July 1994


Folio 1

Folio 1
Photocopy of Barnes' scrapbook containing book reviews by Barnes, book reviews of his novels and pieces of freelance journalism