Guide to the Papers of Graeme Kinross-Smith [MSS 314]

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Manuscript Name Papers of Graeme Kinross-Smith
Manuscript Number MSS 314
Last Updated June 2021
Extent 14 boxes
Location Special Collections, UNSW Canberra
Abstract The papers of Graeme Kinross-Smith consist of correspondence, drafts of and notes for works of prose and poetry, memoranda of agreements with various publishers, reviews, critiques, and photographs

Collection Subject Type


Scope and Content

Author Graeme Kinross-Smith’s collection largely relates to his works of non-fiction, including numerous drafts and notes for Australia’s Writers (1980), an illustrated guide to the lives and work of Australian authors, poets and dramatists, and ‘Tell Me Something - the Oxford Guide for the Starting Writer’ (published in 1992 as Writer : a Working Guide for New Writers). The collection also contains correspondence, article drafts, reviews, photographs, and newspaper cuttings. Correspondents include Sumner Locke Elliott, Rosemary Dobson, Hal Porter, William Stafford, Dal Stivens, Alan Marshall, Patrick White, Kylie Tennant, Les Murray, Xavier Herbert, Mary Durack and Peter Cowan

Date Range of Content


Biographical Note

Graeme Kinross-Smith was born in 1936 in Melbourne. After publishing his first book in the early 1970s, he went on to publish prolifically on such topics as the Murray River, Australian sport, and rural Australia, along with works of poetry and fiction. As well as teaching creative writing at Deakin University, Kinross-Smith has also taught school, adult, and community groups, and given readings of his poetry and short fiction at festivals and conferences in Australia, London and California. He has won the Patricia Hackett Prize, jointly in 1974 and outright in 2004 for short story Where Here Is.

Austlit : Graeme Kinross-Smith retrieved 18 August 2020


Administrative Information

Access and Copying Conditions

Access: Check with Curator

This collection contains a variety of copyright material. Copyright is held by the creator of each item. Specific conditions for this collection are listed below. If no conditions are stipulated then the standard terms of the Copyright Act apply for published and unpublished items. Digitised material from manuscript collections is provided to clients by UNSW Canberra in good faith for private study and research only, and may not be published or re-purposed without the express and written permission of the individual legal holder of that copyright. Refer also to the UNSW copyright, disclaimer and takedown policy. 

Copying: Check with Curator

Preferred Citation

Papers of Graeme Kinross-Smith, Special Collections, UNSW Canberra, Australian Defence Force Academy, Canberra, MSS 314, Box [Number], Folder [Number].


Check with Curator


Subject Keywords


Graeme Kinross-Smith, 1936- — Archives

Australian literature — History and criticism

Australian poetry — 20th century

Authors, Australian — 20th century

Personal Names

Graeme Kinross-Smith, 1936-





Container List

Box 1

Folder 1

Correspondence 1973-1981, includes Kylie Tennant, Xavier Herbert, Patrick White, Gwen Harwood, Katharine Brisbane, R.D. Fitzgerald, A.D. Hope, Rosemary Dobson

Folder 2

Correspondence 1965-1981, includes John Blight, Walter Stone, Dal Stevens, R.P. Throssell, Sumner Locke Elliott, Bruce Dawe, Rosemary Dobson

Manuscript drafts of chapters for the sequel to Australia’s Writers with material regarding Thea Astley and Francis Webb

Folder 4

Drafts regarding Judah Waten, Les Murray, Barry Oakley, Thomas Keneally for the sequel to Australia’s Writers

Folder 5

Drafts of material relating to, and reviews of Australia’s Writers and Turn Left at any Time with Care

Folder 6

Reviews of, and articles about, Australia’s Writers and Turn Left at any Time with Care

Folder 7

Reviews of Australia’s Writers plus correspondence, notes for the Geelong launching of the book

Copt of Rebound, plus notes and drafts relating to Australia’s Writers

Folder 8

Notebook of Australia’s Writers with handwritten drafts (Blight-McAuley) plus drafts (mostly handwritten of ‘The Singer of Concerns - a Profile of Bruce Dawe’


Box 2

Folder 9

Drafts of material regarding James Tucker and Frank Moorhouse for Australia’s Writers

Folder 10

Correspondence from Peter Rose, Oxford University Press, plus drafts of ‘Tell Me Something’, 1991

Folder 11

Correspondence in connection with Australia’s Writers plus clippings. Correspondence includes Roger McDonald, R.D. Fitzgerald, Douglas Stewart and Xavier Herbert. There are also extensive  notes and a document from Thomas Nelson regarding presentation of manuscripts

Folder 12

Correspondence, notes regarding Australia’s Writers - includes Peter Cowan, Tom Hungerford, Mary Durack, Max Suich, Jim Davidson, Laurie Hergenhan

Correspondence in relation to cedar timber around Nowra

Folder 13

Correspondence regarding Australia’s Writers - includes Stuart Sayers, Bruce Bennett, Max Suich, Peter Cowan, Xavier Herbert

Final draft Parts IV and V of ‘Writing Fiction for the Stage for film, television and radio’

First draft Part I-III of ‘Tell Me Something - the Oxford Guide for the Starting Writer’

Folder 14

Word processor versions of ‘Tell Me Something - the Oxford Guide for the Starting Writer’

Folder 15

Typewritten manuscript of Part VI Introducing the Media! plus original reviews of Australia’s Writers

Folder 16

Reviews of Australia’s Writers plus correspondence, publicity material and the typewritten copy of speech at its launch

Typewritten version with handwritten comments and changes of part form: ‘Enter Visions and Sound, Writing Fiction for the Stage, for Film, for Television and Radio’


Box 3

Folder 17

Correspondence, revisions of Parts VI, V, and VI ‘Introducing ... The Media’, version of Part VII ‘Journalism’

Folder 18

Drafts of Tell Me Something - the Oxford Guide for the Starting Writer with handwritten notes

Part II ‘Prose Fiction, Part III ‘Autobiography, Memoirs and Life Histories, Biography’, Part VI ‘Enter Vision and Sound’

Folder 19

Drafts of ‘Tell Me Something ....’ with handwritten comments on Part V ‘An Interlude, Fiction : as Persuader’, Part VI ‘Introducing ... the Media!’, Part VII ‘Journalism’, Part VIII ‘Public Relations - Doing it Well and Telling About It’ plus bibliography and other drafts

Notebook, vol. 1 of notes and handwritten drafts regarding author’s notes

Folder 20

Handwritten notes, drafts on Australian writers

Folder 21

Notes, drafts on Australian writers plus correspondence for a second book on Australian writers, including Frank Moorhouse, David Ireland, Judy Campbell, June Crooke, Alex Bolton, Axel Clarke, Les Murray (correspondence written 1978-1979)

Folder 22

Correspondence, 1978 - includes Barry Oakley and Douglas Stewart

Drafts of article on Kenneth Mckenzie, Judah Waten, Hal Porter, Douglas Stewart

Folder 23

Drafts of articles on Douglas Stewart, John Blight, T.A.G. Hungerford, Judith Wright, Patrick  White, David Campbell, James McAuley, Rosemary Dobson

Correspondence 1975-1978

Folder 24

Correspondence 1976-1978

Drafts of essays on Peter Mathers and Thea Astley


Box 4

Folder 25

Drafts of articles on Peter Mathers, Francis Webb and Thea Astley

Folder 26

Marked up copy of Australia’s Writers

Folder 27

Marked up copy of Australia’s Writers, includes index

Folders 28-29

Marked up copy of Australia’s Writers

Folder 30

Drafts of articles on Henry Lawson, Katherine Susannah Pritchard, Tom Hungerford, Kenneth Slessor, Frank Dalby Davison, Xavier Herbert, R.D. Fitzgerald

Folders 31-32

Marked up copy of Australia’s Writers


Box 5

Folder 33

Marked up copy and handwritten version of Australia’s Writers

Folder 34

Handwritten copy of Australia’s Writers

Folder 35

Handwritten drafts of Australia’s Writers plus photocopied material concerning Christina Stead, James McAuley

Folder 36

Handwritten drafts with correspondence for Australia’s Writers

Folder 37

Handwritten drafts with photocopies for Australia’s Writers

Folder 38

Handwritten and typed drafts for Australia’s Writers

Folder 39

Handwritten drafts with some photocopies for Australia’s Writers


Box 6

Springback binders


Folder 40

Bound volume titled ‘1’ of letters and attachments, draft manuscripts, newspaper cuttings (1960s)

Folder 40A         

Bound volume titled ‘2’ of letters and attachments, draft manuscripts, newspaper cuttings, 1970-1972 with some mid-late 1960s material

Folder 40B

Bound volume titled ‘3’ of letters and attachments, draft manuscripts, newspaper cuttings (1970-1974)

Folder 40C

Bound volume titled ‘4’ of letters and attachments, draft manuscripts, newspaper cuttings (1974-1975), with occasional material from the 1960s


Box 7

Springback binder


Folder 40D

Bound volume titled ‘5’ of letters and attachments, draft manuscripts, newspaper cuttings (1975-1977)

Folder 40E          

Bound volume titled ‘Gordon Inst.’ – consists of letters, brochures, study materials, newspaper cuttings, memoranda, course/subject notes and submissions, for Gordon Institute of Technology, Geelong (1969-1975)

Folder 40F


Small collection of letters and short story (1959)

Letters concerned with the writing, research for and publication of ‘The Book on the Murray’, with a few referring to ‘Geology and Geomorphology of the Murray River’ (10 November 1970 – 3 December 1975)

Other publication- and award-related letters from the 1970s including letters from Christina Stead and Hal Porter (23 June 1972 – 22 November 1979)

Folder 41


Mainly letters to and from publishers and editors, and academic project matters, for the 1980s (22 April 1980 – 29 November 1989)

Folder 42


Mainly letters to and from publishers and editors, universities, government departments, and academic project matters such as contributions for the Oxford Companion to Australian Sport, and Oxford Book of Australian Sporting Anecdotes, for the 1990s (1 February 1990 - 10 April 1997)

Undated: 5 letters probably from 1970s and 1980s


Box 8

Folder 43

Literary drafts

File: ‘Defence Force Academy Manuscripts’ – draft and annotated versions of essays, papers, monographs, on Australian writers such as C.J. Dennis, Norman Lindsay, Hugh McCrae, Katharine Susannah Prichard, Vance Palmer, and Xavier Herbert; handwritten notes and jottings, drafts of poems (undated); includes paper on Thea Astley, dated August 1979

Folder 44

Literary drafts

Manuscript titled ‘Tell Me Something: The Oxford Writer’s Book – The Oxford Guide for the Starting Writer’, 637 pages (undated)


Box 9

Folder 45

Literary drafts

File: ‘Writer – print out of ms [manuscript] GK-S 430566’ – draft book titled ‘Tell Me Something: The Oxford Guide for the Starting Writer’; consists of 4 parts: Preface and Part One; Part Two: Prose Fiction; Part Three: Autobiography, Memoirs and Life Histories, Biography; Part Four: Enter Vision and Sound; Part Five: An Interlude: Fiction as Persuader; Part Six: Introducing….the Media!; Part Seven: Journalism; Part 8: Public Relations – Doing it Well and Telling About it; Part 9: Song Writing – Let’s Go Out with Music! Working Guide for New Writers’, various pagination, dated 24 October 1990

Folder 46

Literary drafts

File: ‘Writer - manuscript’ – draft book titled ‘Writer: A Working Guide for New Writers’, 600 pages, dated 3 February 1992


Box 10

Folder 47

File: ‘Writer - manuscript’ – draft book titled ‘Writer: A Working Guide for New Writers’, 237 pages, dated 20 February 1992

Folder 48

File: ‘Authors galleys’ – draft book titled ‘Writer: A Working Guide for New Writers’, 263 pages, dated 1992

Folder 49

File: ‘for ADFA final check for printer of ‘If I Abscond’ – page proofs, notes, launch invites, draft speeches, correspondence, 1997

Folder 50

File: ‘Earlier versions of ‘If I Abscond’ – page proofs ‘ Seeing Mount Shasta’, notes, corrections,  1997

File: ‘Drafts of ‘Affair with Inhaler see Monthly Review’

Folder 51

File: ‘Mankind’s Spies: How Writers Work’ – draft of book, correspondence 1972


Box 11

Folder 52

File: ‘Mirages’ – three versions of book, 1998 and working draft/notes version

Folder 53

File: ‘Defence Force Academy’ – draft of ‘Australia’s Writers’, 1979

Folder 54

File: ‘G.K. Smith Humanities’ – notes, drafts for ‘Book of the Murray, Affair with Water, Galleys of Writer, c1970s

Folder 55

File: ‘For ADFA’ – Three drafts ‘The Drowned Guard’, ’Australian writers and writing’, ‘The Pictures of Portico’, ‘The Forehand in the Widening Gyre’. Program notes, brochures, drafts of poems, prose, notes on poetry, published articles, lecture notes, c1970s-1990s

Folder 56

File: ‘Further ADFA’ – Three drafts and notes of ‘Man of a Magic Coast’, ‘Grand Days’, ‘Scaling Mount Elephant’, various poems, c1970s-1990s


Box 12

Folder 57

File: ‘Text Rewrite GKS LC 9’ – drafts, notes for ‘Lawn Tennis’, ‘Flute’s Story’, ‘Family Papers’, ‘The Manuscripts Room’

Folder 58

File: ‘Further ADFA’ – Drafts and notes, poems, short stories, c1970s-1990s

Folder 59

File: ‘Defence Force Academy GKS 430566’ – draft of Truk Journal, handwritten notes, drafts of poetry


Box 13

Folder 60

Draft chapter on Francis Webb, correspondence 1979, handwritten notes on poetry

Folder 61

File: ‘MS Tourists in Lobe’ – Drafts and notes for poem to become ‘If I Abscond’, 1997

Folder 62

Handwritten notes, coursework materials, drafts of poetry, c1980s-1990s

Folder 63

File: ‘Writer (OUP) final stages of MS and permissions’ – Seeking permissions and non-copyright replies: ‘Mankinds Spies’, notes on Writer, drafts for Acknowledgements, permissions, indexes

Folder 64

Handwritten notes, drafts of poetry, short stories. Copies of published articles: ‘Menzies of Minnamurra’ (1968) and ‘Johnny Carrots…’ (1964)


Box 14

Folder 65

Draft of Tell Me Something: Part 7: Journalism, Australian Broadcasting Tribunal, Information Paper Update: Inquiry into Accuracy, Fairness and Impartiality in Current Affairs Programs on Television and Radio (Sept 1990), newspaper articles, notes

Folder 66

Writing education papers from ABC Radio Dram and Features (1988), Victoria College of the Arts (VCA) (1989), Deakin Media Unit Productions (c1980s). Notes, papers, poetry drafts, published article excerpts

Folder 67

Newspaper clippings on literary matters, c1960s-1990s

Folder 68

Biographical materials, financial records and business papers; Published profiles, university qualifications, employment, published works, book launch by Don Dunstan, former premier of South Australia, 1980. Memorandum of Agreements for ‘The Book of the Murray’ and ‘A Literary Guide to Australia’ and remittance advice, 1976

Folder 69

Financial records and business papers: memorandum of agreements and correspondence with publishers, 1970s

Folder 70

Newspaper, journal and magazine reviews, readers reports and articles

Folder 71

Miscellaneous, master pics list