Novelist Ishiguro's notes and works head to Texas library

Sat Aug 22, 2015 7:07am EDT
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By Jon Herskovitz

AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - The sweeping archives of award-winning novelist Kazuo Ishiguro will be heading to a University of Texas research library, including a discarded opening chapter for his best-known book, "The Remains of the Day," the university said.

The novelist, who was born in Nagasaki, Japan, in 1954 and has lived in Britain since he was a child, has kept extensive notes of his novels and multiple drafts of his works that include "Never Let Me Go" and "The Buried Giant."

The collection will be going to the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas, a research library that is a major collector of manuscripts and original source material. The university paid just over $1 million to acquire the material, a library spokeswoman said.

"For many years, I’ve been in the habit of keeping a large cardboard box under my desk into which I throw, more or less indiscriminately, all papers produced during my writing that I don't want to file neatly and take into the next stage of composition," Ishiguro said in a statement released by the university.

These include early drafts of chapters, rejected pages, scraps of paper with scribbled thoughts and repeated attempts at the same paragraph, he added.

Also in the collection will be unpublished works and notes for stories, screenplays and songs, including a track called "Shingles" written by a young Ishiguro who had tried to land a contract with a major record label.

In preparing to ship his archives to Austin, Ishiguro found a manuscript for a pulp Western, his first serious attempt at fiction that he thought had been lost.

There is also a short novel that soon followed, called "To Remember a Summer By." At least one publisher rejected it.   Continued...

Author Kazuo Ishiguro is pictured during an interview with Reuters in New York in this April 20, 2005 file photo. REUTERS/Mike Segar/Files