Lilly Library Manuscript Collections


The Williams, Diane mss., ca. 1986-2008, include the correspondence, papers, and drafts of American short story writer, Diane Williams. Born in 1946, Williams attended the University of Pennsylvania for her undergraduate degree. She worked as an editor at companies such as J.G. Ferguson (Doubleday, New York City, New York) and Scott Foresman. Williams frequently took writing classes with well-known authors such as Phillip Roth and Gordon Lish, the friendship and professional relationship with the latter established by said courses. Diane Williams is best known for her short story literature and her work on literary annuals. She is the co-foundering editor of NOON, the independent literary annual. Williams was the publisher and co-edited Story Quarterly, the independent literary quarterly, from 1985 to 1997. In addition to publishing various short stories, she has also published seven books, some of which include: This Is About the Body, the Mind, the Soul, the World, Time and Fate (1990); The Stupefaction (1996); and Vicky Swanky Is a Beauty (2012). Williams has taught at Bard College, Syracuse University, and at The Center for Fiction in New York City. Also included are proofs and galleys of books and journals, correspondence with Gordon Lish and other writers, Williams' sketchbooks, and copies of journals that include pieces by Williams.

The collection is organized into the following series: I. Audio-Visual Materials; II. Correspondence; III. Education; IV. Writings and Publications; V. Miscellaneous. The Correspondence series includes letters, emails, notes, and cards to and from Diane Williams, on the subject of books and journals, to individual subjects, and on personal matters. Audio-Visual Materials has cassette tapes of interviews of Williams'; CDs of Williams' work relating to NOON (2003), her email, and a Chicago television interview with Warner Saunders; a DVD of a 1998 reading and Q&A by Williams' at Syracuse University.

Education has two sub-series: Gordon Lish Notebooks and Teaching; most notebooks are dated and have bound and loose-leaf materials. The Teaching sub-series materials document the creative writing classes Williams taught at Bard College, Columbia University, and Syracuse University. Writings and Publications are divided into eight sub-series: Books, Journals, Interviews, Magazines, NOON, Publication History, Story Quarterly, and Writings. The Books, NOON, and Story Quarterly sub-series all include proofs, galleys, cover art, and mock ups. Some oversize materials are available. The Journals sub-series includes copies of journals with pieces by Williams. The Publication sub-series includes author contracts and a metal card file with approximately 700 5" x 8" index cards itemizing the publication history of nearly all Williams' stories.

An inventory is available.

Acquired: 2014

Collection size: 23,181 items

For more information about this collection and any related materials contact the Public Services Department, Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405. Call (812) 855-2452 or send an email using our Ask a Question form.