Texas Archival Resources Online

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Scope and Contents

Restrictions

Related Material

Separated Material

Administrative Information

Description of Series

Series I. Literary and Performance Activities, 1964-2003, undated

Series II. Correspondence, 1959-2005, undated

Series III. Personal and Career Related, 1974-2002, undated

University of Texas, Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center

Spalding Gray:

A Preliminary Inventory of His Papers at the Harry Ransom Center



Creator: Gray, Spalding, 1941-2004
Title: Spalding Gray Papers
Dates: 1959-2005, undated
Abstract: The papers of author, monologist, and actor Spalding Gray are rich in the materials Gray used to develop his on-stage improvisational monologues and resulting literary works. Included are performance notebooks, journals, notes and drafts for monologues, poetry, speeches, plays, and published and unpublished works, as well as a small amount of correspondence.
Call Number: Manuscript Collection No. 5188
Extent: 49 document boxes, 3 serial boxes, 1 oversize box (osb) (20.58 linear feet)
Language: English
Repository: The University of Texas at Austin, Harry Ransom Center

Scope and Contents

The papers of author, monologist, and actor Spalding Gray are rich in the materials Gray used to develop his on-stage improvisational monologues and resulting literary works. Included are performance notebooks, journals, notes and drafts for monologues, poetry, speeches, plays, and published and unpublished works, as well as a small amount of correspondence. The materials date from 1959 to 2004, with the bulk dating from the 1970s through the1990s. The papers are arranged in three series: I. Literary and Performance Activities, 1964-2003; II. Correspondence, 1959-2005; and III. Personal and Career Related, 1974-2002.

The Literary and Performance Activities series is divided into three subseries: A. Published Works, 1981-1999; B. Unpublished Works, 1974-2001; and C. Notebooks, 1964-2003. Materials for Impossible Vacation (1992) make up the majority of Subseries A., with items spanning most of the creative process including notebooks, an outline, handwritten excerpts, and progressively more polished drafts culminating in photocopied sections of the published work with corrections throughout. The same types of materials are present for other works, including Gray's Anatomy (1993); It's a Slippery Slope (1997); Life Interrupted (2005); Monster in a Box (1992); Morning, Noon and Night (1999); A Personal History of the American Theater (1984); Seven Scenes from a Family Album (1981); and Sex and Death to the Age 14 (1986).

Subseries B. includes a synopsis and drafts of the unfinished novel Fear of Fear as well as short story drafts. Gray sometimes incorporated these short stories into published works, and they are often the further development of a monologue performance. Also in this series are notes and typescripts of some monologues, mostly handwritten drafts of poetry, playscripts for Cello, Crossword, and Down in Heaven, speech typescripts, and notes and fragments related to unidentified works.

The bulk of Series I. is in Subseries C. The handwritten performance notebooks, heavily revised and annotated, are often the template for Gray's live performances, and the journals provide an unvarnished look into his daily thoughts and life. Both forms of notebook span from early in his career to a year before his death, and both provide deep insight into the development of his monologues and published works.

The correspondence in Series II. is mostly incoming with only a few letters from Gray to primarily personal acquaintances. Fan mail makes up the majority of the letters and is either in response to Gray's requests for audience feedback or correspondence from people who were moved by one of his performances. Also in this series are two form letter templates sent by Gray to family, friends, and acquaintances informing them he is either too overwhelmed by life or too busy working on a novel to reply.

The materials in Series III. include many newspaper and magazine clippings that document Gray's career from the 1970s-2000s, as well as some publicity photos, publishing contracts, transcripts of interviews, an Emerson College memory scrapbook, and a psychoanalytic questionnaire filled out by Gray presumably at the request of a psychologist. At the end of this series are magazines and journals containing articles by Gray and interviews, profiles, or reviews of his works and performances.

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Restrictions

Access:

Open for research. Audio and video recordings transferred to other Ransom Center departments require advanced notice for access in the Center’s Reading and Viewing Room. To check on the access status and request use of these recordings, please contact the Center before arrival: reference@hrc.utexas.edu

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Related Material

The Ransom Center Film Collection has film related to Swimming to Cambodia and the Photography Collection has two portrait photographs of Gray.

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Separated Material

Hundreds of audio cassette tapes and VHS tapes containing performances by Gray, from some of his earliest at places like the Kitchen and The Performing Garage in New York City to late career appearances at Lincoln Center, are cataloged separately and housed with the Ransom Center's Audio and Film Collections.

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Administrative Information

Acquisition:

Purchase and gift, 2010 (2010-06-11-GP)

Processed by:

Matt Stine, Stephen Cooper, 2011

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Container List

 

Series I. Literary and Performance Activities, 1964-2003, undated

Subseries A. Published Works, 1981-1999, undated
Container
1.1 Gray's Anatomy, notes, handwritten, undated (novel, 1993)
Impossible Vacation (novel, 1992)
Container
1.2-3 Notebooks, undated
Container
2.4 Las Vegas prison letters, handwritten, undated
Container
2.5 Outline, and 'Meeting Cleo at Alliance Francaise,' typescripts, undated
Container
2.6 Handwritten excerpts, undated
Container
2.7 'A New Monolog,' typescript, 1988
Container
2.8 'Sunday Neurosis,' computer printout, 1988
Container
2.9 'Alley Theatre in Texas,' typescript, undated
Container
3.1-7 'Tape 1, Side A,' typescripts, undated
Container
4.1-2 'Tape B, side A & B,' typescripts, undated
Container
4.3 'Side B, started middle of tape,' typescript, undated
Container
4.4 'Tape 5, side A,' typescript, undated
Container
4.5-5.1 'Chapter 1,' 'Chapter 2,' and photocopied typescripts, undated
Container
5.2-7.4 Section and fragment typescripts, undated
Container
7.5-6 Partial draft, edited typescript, undated
Container
7.7-8.2 Complete draft, edited typescript, 1991
Container
8.3-4 Setting copy, 1991
Container
8.5 Excerpt from published work, with corrections, undated
It's a Slippery Slope (novel, 1997)
Container
8.6-8 Draft and fragments, edited typescripts, 1996
Container
8.9-9.1 Page proofs, edited typescripts, 1997
Container
9.2 'First pass, pages master,' 1997
Container
9.3 Page proofs, 1997
Container
9.4 'Final pass,' fragment, 1997
Container
9.5 Life Interrupted (monologue, 2005), drafts and 'final copy,' typescripts, undated
Monster in a Box (novel, 1992)
Container
9.6 Notebook, undated
Container
9.7-8 Outline and notes, undated
Container
9.9-10 Early draft, typescript, undated
Container
10.1 Drafts, typescripts, undated
Container
10.2 Page proofs, edited, 1992
Morning, Noon and Night (novel, 1999)
Container
10.3 Notebook, 1998
Container
10.4 Draft fragments, photocopied typescript, with email from John Perry Barlow, 1999
Container
10.5-7 Late drafts, photocopied typescripts with edits, 1999, undated
Container
10.8-10 Page proofs and fragments, 1999
Container
11.1-2 'First' and 'final pass' page proofs, 1999
A Personal History of the American Theater (article in Performing Arts Journal, Vol. 8 No. 2, 1984)
Container
11.3 Excerpts, typescript, 1980
Container
11.4 Draft, typescript, 1983
Seven Scenes from a Family Album (sketches, 1981)
Container
11.5 Notebook, undated
Container
11.6 A Christmas Letter from Ted and Jean Just to Catch Up, typescript, undated
Container
11.7 Go Wake Jessie Up, typescript, undated
Container
11.8 Pamphlet, Benzene Edition, 1981
Sex and Death to the Age 14 (novel, 1986)
Container
11.9 Booze, Cars & College Girls, typescript, 1979
Subseries B. Unpublished Works, 1974-2001, undated
Novel and Short Stories
Container
11.10-13 Amtrak to Chicago, typescript drafts, 1983-1984, undated
Container
11.14 Berkley Baths, typescript, undated
Container
11.15 Bridge, typescript and photocopy, 1990
Container
11.16-17 Caldonia, typescript drafts, 1984
Container
12.1-2 Christmas in Miami, typescript drafts, 1988, undated
Container
12.3 The Clubman, typescript, undated
Container
12.4-5 Dream, handwritten drafts, 1983, undated
Container
12.6 End of Nic, handwritten draft, undated
Container
12.7 Esquire, typescript, undated
Container
12.8 Evening Five, typescript, undated
Container
12.9 The Farmers' [sic] Daughter, typescript, 1984
Container
12.10-15 Fear of Fear (unfinished novel), typescript synopsis, drafts, and fragments, undated
Container
13.1-2 First Day, typescript, undated
Container
13.3-4 Forrest's Dad Lifts the Rug and Looks Under, handwritten and typescript drafts, undated
Container
13.5 The Girls There, handwritten page, undated
Container
13.6 It Was Fascination I Knew (Bill and Sally Make Love by the Stereo), typescript, undated
Container
13.7-10 Labor Day, typescripts, 1981, 1984
Container
13.11-12 Last Days, handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.13 Manhattan, handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.14-15 Natural Child Birth, or, Maybe It Was Good That a New Baby Was Being Born, typescript drafts, 1984, undated
Container
13.16 The Return From India, typescript, undated
Container
13.17-18 The Ridiculous Little Game, typescript, 1984
Container
13.19 The Story of the House, handwritten draft, 1984
Container
13.20 Things That Drove Me Here, handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.21 Three Piece Suite, handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.22 Touring Solo, A Performer's Diary, handwritten and typescript drafts, undated
Container
13.23 A True Story of "True Stories," typescript, 1986
Container
13.24 Tuesday Jan 19, 1982, An Average Day An Average Night from My Life, handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.25 The State of the Union, typescript, undated
Untitled (listed by partial first line)
Container
13.26 And finally the last image. . ., handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.27 And now I saw the casual. . ., handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.28 He looked so vulnerable. . ., handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.29 I feel as though I can begin at last. . ., handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.30 If I try to recollect my first memory of radio. . ., typescript, undated
Container
13.31 It was the cobblestones that first attracted me. . ., typescript, 1997
Container
13.32 Jan. 9. Something else happens. . ., handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.33 Slippery Jack Sharpe pulls into. . ., handwritten draft, undated
Container
13.34 What's in a name. . ., handwritten drafts, undated
Container
13.35-36 Wanted Forever in Nevada, typescript drafts, 1974, 1984
Monologues
Container
14.1 52nd St. Project, typescript, 1990
Container
14.2 Best man, typescript 'preview notes,' undated
Container
14.3-5 Conversation with people in LA, typescripts, 1988
Container
14.6-8 Interviews with Betty Clarke, 1988; Malen Chuon, undated; Raymond Hirai, undated; all typescripts
Container
14.9 It's a Slippery Slope, SFX list, fax, 2001
Container
14.10 Life Interrupted, lighting requirements and notes, undated
Container
14.11-12 NBC American Promise, transcripts, undated
Container
14.13 Thoughts on Morning, Noon and Night, handwritten notes, undated
Container
14.14 Travels Through New England, show announcement and handwritten notes, 1984
Container
14.15 Unidentified notes and drafts, handwritten and typescripts, undated
Poetry
Container
14.16 Berkeley Heights, undated
Container
14.17 Calendar Picture, 1976; The Ripeness Is All, 1980
Container
14.18 Maybe a Full Moon, 1979
Container
14.19 Seven Scenes, undated
Container
14.20 Some People Just Are That Way; After the Soap Operas; Death by Cancer; Winged Marc, undated
Container
14.21 Theo; Mohave, undated
Container
15.1 Untitled poems, undated
Plays
Container
15.2 Cello (A Play in Three Scenes), undated
Container
15.3-4 Crossword (A Play in Two Scenes), undated
Container
15.5 Down in Heaven, undated
Speeches
Container
15.6 The Anniversary, undated
Container
15.7 Commencement speech, undated
Container
15.8 Dear New York City, undated
Container
15.9 The Graduation Speech I Never Gave, 1986
Notes and fragments, 1979-1999, undated
Container
15.10 Note cards
Container
15.11 Soviet Union
Container
15.12-16.2 Unidentified
Subseries C. Notebooks, 1964-2003, undated
Performance
Container
16.3-7 #1, #3, #4, and #6, undated
Container
16.8 Bank, undated
Container
17.1 Best man, undated
Container
17.2-4 Books #1, 3, and 4, undated
Container
17.5 Christmas in Miami, undated
Container
17.6 End of the World, undated
Container
17.7 Fame & shame, undated
Container
17.8 Fear of Dying, undated
Container
18.1 Flying in America, undated
Container
18.2-3 Gray's Anatomy, undated
Container
18.4 Greece 1, 2, and 3, undated
Container
18.5 Having a child, undated
Container
19.1 Hawaii, undated
Container
19.2-20.2 Impossible Vacation, 1987, undated
Container
20.3 India & after, undated
Container
20.4-21.1 It's a Slippery Slope, 1995, undated
Container
21.2 Kessler Institute, undated
Container
21.3 Monster in a Box, undated
Container
21.4-22.1 Morning, Noon and Night, 1999
Container
22.2 Notes for Omega, undated
Container
22.3 Nursing home story, undated
Container
22.4 Relationship to self, undated
Container
22.5 Relationship with Liz, undated
Container
22.6 Rhode Island & Zen Do, undated
Container
22.7 Ron's funeral, undated
Container
23.1-3 Skiing, 1995
Container
23.4-6 Swimming to Cambodia, undated
Container
24.1-3 Terrors of pleasure, undated
Container
24.4 Theo & dentist, undated
Container
24.5 Unfinished business, undated
Container
24.6-33.1 Untitled notebooks, undated
Container
33.2 Working with Children, undated
Journals
Container
33.3 1964
Container
33.4 1969
Container
33.5 1969-1970
Container
33.6 1970s
Container
34.1 1971-1972
Container
34.2 1976
Container
34.3 1976-1977
Container
34.4 1977-1978
Container
34.5 1978
Container
35.1 1978-1979
Container
35.2-3 1979-1980
Container
35.4-5 1980
Container
36.1 1981-1982
Container
36.2 1982
Container
36.3 1983
Container
36.4 1984
Container
36.5 1985
Container
37.1-3 1986
Container
37.4 1986-1987
Container
37.5 1987
Container
38.1-2 1987-1988
Container
38.3 1988-1989
Container
38.4-5 1989-1990
Container
39.1 1990-1991
Container
39.2-3 1990-1992
Container
39.4 1991
Container
39.5-40.1 1992
Container
40.2 1992-1993
Container
40.3 1993
Container
40.4-41.1 1993-1994
Container
41.2-4 1994
Container
42.1 1994-1995
Container
42.2-5 1995
Container
43.1-2 1996
Container
43.3 1996-1997
Container
43.4 1997
Container
44.1 1997-1998
Container
44.2 1998-1999
Container
44.3 1999
Container
44.4 1999-2000
Container
44.5-45.1 2000
Container
45.2 2000-2001
Container
45.3-4 2001
Container
46.1 2001-2002
Container
46.2 2003
Container
46.3 Notes from journals, undated

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Series II. Correspondence, 1959-2005, undated

Container
46.4 Career related, 1977-2002, undated
Container
46.5-6 Fan mail, 1979-2003, undated
Container
47.1 Personal, 1959-2005, undated

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Series III. Personal and Career Related, 1974-2002, undated

Personal
Container
47.2 Emerson College memories scrapbook, undated
Container
47.3 Miscellaneous documents, 1974-1986, undated
Container
47.4 Notes for Gray on Gray, typescript, undated
Container
47.5 Psychoanalytic questionnaire, typescript, undated
Career related
Container
47.6 Adelaide Festival materials, 1985
Clippings
Container
47.7 1970s
Container
47.8-10 1980s
Container
47.11-48.5, osb 53 1990s, scrapbook
Container
49.1 2000s
Container
49.2-3 Undated
Container
49.4 Interview transcripts and printouts, 1981-1997
Container
49.5 The Killing Fields call sheet, 1983
Container
49.6 Legal documents, 1966, 1986
Container
49.7 Narrative questions and skiing, undated
Container
49.8 Publicity contact sheet and photos (slides), 1991, 1997-1998, undated
Container
49.9 Spalding Gray's Week in Review radio show proposal, handwritten, undated
Container
49.10 True Stories performance workshop attendee list, 2001
Works by Others
Container
49.11 Fuoroli, Caryn. Spalding Gray's Solo Performances: Permanence Composed of Impermanence, undated
Container
49.12 Howell, Stokes. Just Drive, 1990
Container
49.13 Krausman, Joseph Alphonse. Down in Heaven: One Act of a Farce in Two Acts, 1973
Container
49.14 Unidentified. The Autobiography of my Voice, undated
Container
49.15 Unidentified. Transcript of Spalding Gray's 1969 journal, undated
Publications
Articles by Gray
Container
50 Christmas in Miami (Fame, December 1988)
Clean & Sober & Profoundly Disturbed (GQ, June 1993)
The Haul of Fame (Rolling Stone, 21 May 1987, 2 copies)
In His Mind's Eye (Condé Nast Traveler, November 1993)
Inside Out: The Dalai Lama Interviewed by Spalding Gray (Tricycle: The Buddhist Review, Fall 1991)
The Late Blooming of a Monogamist (Manhattan File, June 1999)
A Personal History of the American Theater (Alternatives theatrales, July 1983)
Radio Daze (GQ, April 1988)
Container
osb 53 Seven Scenes from a Family Album (Benzene, Winter 1980)
Container
50 Spalding Gray (Journal of the Writers Guild of America, West, August 1992)
Striking it Poor in Hollywood (TV Guide, 28 November-4 December 1987)
Swimming to Cambodia (American Theatre, February 1985)
Interviews and Profiles
Container
51 The Art of Autobiography (Cineaste, Vol. XIX No. 4) [1993]
Container
osb 53 Comedy & Survival in America (Next Wave Festival Journal, 1988)
Container
51 Creative Living and Spalding Gray (Ulster, Autumn 1986)
A Gray Area (Lincoln Center Theatre Playbill, November 1996)
Gray Daddy (Hamptons, 19-25 June 1998)
The Graying of Spalding (Northern Ohio Live, May 1993)
Gray Matter (Elle, UK edition, September 1987)
Just Visiting Spalding Gray (Seven Arts, April 1995)
Lost in Space at the Splendid Café (New York Stories, Summer 2000)
Party Animal (New York, 11 September 2000)
Spalding Gray (Alive: The New Performance Magazine, November/December 1982)
Container
osb 53 Spalding Gray, A Personal History (Other Stages, 16 December-14 January 1983)
Spalding Gray in Person (Washington Review, June/July 1990)
Container
51 Spalding Gray Speaks (Destination, March 1995)
Container
osb 53 Spalding Gray's Tales of the Day (Sag Harbor Reader, Summer 1999)
Spalding's True Confessions (The Hampton Sheet, July 1999)
Container
51 The Talking Man (American Way, 15 March 1994)
Container
52 The Talking Man (Paper Magazine, May 1992)
Telling Tales (Vanity Fair, August 1985)
Reviews
Container
52 Crossover Dreams (Entertainment Weekly, 8 November 1996)
Gray's Eminence (Newsweek, 28 July 1986)
Open Secrets (Vanity Fair, June 1992)
Shades of Gray (Entertainment Weekly, 19 June 1992)
Spalding Gray, Terrors of Pleasure (High Performance, #37, 1987)
Unidentified
Container
52 (New York, 3 August 1998)
(People, 17 February 1992)
Container
53 Oversize box

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