Mystery writer James Ellroy, known for his stories of crime and corruption in 1950s Los Angeles, has donated his personal archives to the University of South Carolina. The collection includes Ellroy’s extensive outlines, files, methodic notes, and longhand manuscript drafts for his 16 books, as well as working copies of his essays, short stories, and film scripts.
The archives also contain “a great deal of research information on dark places and crimes, including items from the investigation of my mother’s death,” Ellroy told the Associated Press, referring to the unsolved 1958 strangulation murder of Jean Ellroy recounted in his memoir My Dark Places..
George Terry, vice-provost and dean for libraries and information systems, noted that the Ellroy archive will strengthen the university’s holdings in modern American literature and the profession of authorship. The school holds similar collections for writers F. Scott Fitzgerald, Joseph Heller, and James Dickey, as well as the Augusta Baker Collection of African-American Children’s Literature and Folklore.
Posted December 6, 1999.