Ramsey Campbell [as Jay Ramsey] - The Claw, Autograph Manuscript


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Liverpool, n.d. [c1981]. Manuscript. Unbound. The original, autograph manuscript of Jay Ramsay's The Claw, Jay Ramsay being a pseudonym of Ramsey Campbell. 12 notebooks entirely in the author's hand. Campbell?s process is to write by hand and then type the manuscript up. The notebooks comprise of the novel (seven notebooks) and notes thereof (five smaller notebooks), they are hand-paginated and complete. Very closely written, in Campbell?s somewhat difficult hand (I?m a fine one to talk). The Claw tells of a magical artefact from Africa that turns parents into violent monsters. Campbell deposited his manuscripts, typescripts and correspondence with the Science Fiction Foundation Collection at the University of Liverpool. The present manuscript, along with the other that we are offering (stock code 7159) are the only copies we know of currently in private hands. No copies recorded at auction. Liverpool hold typescripts and galleys of the present title. An important piece and a rare opportunity to own a manuscript by the author referred to in the Oxford Companion to English Literature as ?Britain?s most respected living horror writer?. Physical description: 12 notebooks. Six A4 spiral-bound notebooks and one staple-bound notebook comprising the main body of the novel. One A5 spiral-bound notebook containing notes, chapter outlines, cross-references and four memo books containing preliminary and progression notes. (1) Spiral Bound Notebook. Dimensions: 254mm x 202mm x 6mm, titled ?The Claw', and inscribed by Campbell thus 'For Stuart Schiff - / the only extant / work of Jay Ramsay / (in all its metamorphoses / All the best from / Ramsey Campbell?. Remaining 49 leaves filled recto only, in the author?s hand. The verso is reserved for note-taking. Approximately 55 lines per page. (2) titled ?The claw 2?, recto and verso as above. (3) as two, but titled ?The claw 3?, (4) as two, but titled ?the claw 4?. (5) Dimensions: 254mm x 200mm x 9mm, titled ?The claw & rewrites?. 50 pages, mostly filled to the rectos. Approximately 25 pages of rewrites, and 25 pages continuation of the novel.(6) Dimensions: 254mm x 200mm x 6mm, titled ?The claw (rewrites)?. Appears to be mostly full chapters (40pp) with some rewrites to the rear (8pp). Filled mainly to rectos. (7) Exercise book, dimensions: 204mm x 165mm x 3mm. Nine hand-written pages, all recto. Essentially just the final chapter. (8) Dimensions: 200mm x 160mm x 8mm. Chapter outlines, page references, general notes and a couple of sketches. 46pp, rectos. A few pages of notes on the flip-side, seemingly unrelated to the present novel. (9) Dimensions: 159mm x 96mm x 5mm, preliminary notes, mostly with page references, 72pp filled verso and recto. Occasional sketch. (10) As 9. (11) As 9. (12) As 9, only with 44pp filled. (13) A letter from The Carol Smith Literary Agency, with Campbell?s note to rear. The letter is dated 11 June 1981 and congratulates Campbell on the novel. Approximately 600 pages in total. Numerous amendments and strike-throughs throughout. [7160, Hyraxia Books].


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