Guide to the Papers of Norman Talbot [MSS 177]

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Manuscript Name Papers of Norman Talbot
Manuscript Number MSS 177
Last Updated June 2021
Extent 1 box + 1 AV box
Location Special Collections, UNSW Canberra
Abstract Typescript of The Fishing Boy and other drafts and poems by Norman Talbot. Includes manuscript drafts, mock-up of final product and photographs of artwork for The Book of Changes developed in collaboration with artist John Montefiore

Collection Subject Type


Scope and Content

The papers of Norman Talbot contain extensive material relating to The Book of Changes (1999), poems inspired by the 41-panel art sequence Life Series by John Montefiore, along with other drafts, poems, photographs, and correspondence

Date Range of Content

1973-1996 (bulk 1993)

Biographical Note

Norman Talbot was born in 1936 in Suffolk, England, and obtained a BA from Durham before completing his PhD at Leeds. After migrating to Australia to take up a university lectureship at the University of Newcastle, in 1963 he and a group of fellow poets founded Nimrod Publications which he took control of in 1965. In the 30 years of his academic career, Talbot rose to the rank of professor. Upon retirement, Talbot worked for a decade as a full-time writer as well as expanding his Nimrod Literary Consultancy and working with Catchfire Press in various capacities.

Talbot’s extensive published works include verse collections, prose fantasies, stories, and guides to spelling and poetic terms. In 2002, Seven New South Wales Sonnet-Forms won the Broadway Poetry Prize.

Austlit : Norman Talbot retrieved 14 July 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 If no conditions are stipulated then the standard terms of the Copyright Act apply for published and unpublished items.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collections is provided to clients by UNSW Canberra in good faith for private study and research only, and may not be published or re-purposed without the express and written permission of the individual legal holder of Latham, Australian Capital Territory 2615that copyright. Refer also to the UNSW copyright, disclaimer and takedown policy. 

Copying: Check with Curator

Preferred Citation

Papers of Norman Talbot, Special Collections, UNSW Canberra, Australian Defence Force Academy, Canberra, MSS 177, Box [Number], Folder [Number]


Check with Curator


Subject Keywords



Norman Talbot, 1936- — Archives

Australian poetry — 20th century

Personal Names

Norman Talbot, 1936-




Container List


Box 1

Folder 1

Manuscripts : Running to Mum in Jenny’s Plant and The Fishing Boy

Folder 2

Manuscripts : The Kelly Haiku and The Fishing Boy

Photographs The Fishing Boy

Literary drafts

Folder 3

The Book of Changes

Small red Croxley School notebook (110mm. x 165mm.), containing handwritten ideas and notes for The Book of Changes, in envelope labelled “January ’93 notebook: original drafts of The Book of Changes Norman Talbot"

Draft compilation of 15 poems [27 pp., unrevised but many crossed out, dated ‘17.F.93’ [17 February? 1993]. Poem no. 10 ‘The Orchard’, has handwritten sheet with notes attached

Draft compilation of 15 poems [27 pp., unnumbered], handwritten revisions and notes, dated ‘25 Feb – 2 March’ [1993]

Draft compilation of poems, titled “Montefiories’s Book of Changes”, typed, light revision, dated 3-7 March 1993

Draft compilation of poems, typed and revised with notes, handwritten date ‘March 13?’ [1993]

Folder 4

Draft compilation of poems, titledMontefiore’s Book of Changes”, typed with handwritten revisions, dated 21 March 1993

Draft compilation of poems, titled “A poet and painter’s Book of Changes”, handwritten alteration to title, handwritten revisions to poems, dated 13 May 1993

Folder 5

Draft compilation of poems, titled “The Book of Changes” [unnumbered] small amount of editing, dated 2 June 1993

Draft compilation of poems, titled “The Book of Changes”, heavily marked, handwritten revisions and comments on structure, content and meaning of individual poems, dated 2 June 1993

Folder 6

Draft compilation of poems, titled “The Book of Changes” typed and unedited, dated 25 June 1993, filed inside empty cover of The University of Newcastle (1993) Uninews, 1:1993. Back cover article ‘Simply the best’ unnamed author, refers to collaborative work in progress between John Montefiore and Norman Talbot

Untitled draft compilation of poems, handwritten revisions, dated ‘June 29?’ [1993]

Draft compilation of poems, titled “The Book of Changes”, [unnumbered] some handwritten revisions, some poetry ticked (for inclusion?), 2 pages handwritten poems, dated ‘July 5, 1993’ with ‘A’ in red circle above date

Draft compilation of poems, titled “The Book of Changes”, unedited, dated 5 July 1993, red ‘B’ in circle, top left corner above date

Folder 7

Draft compilation of poems, titled “The Book of Changes, many handwritten revisions, dated 11 July 1993

Draft compilation of poems, titled “The Book of Changes”, [35 pp.], very light editing, dated 14 July 1993

Draft compilation of poems, [36 p] titled “The Book of Changes”, typed, unrevised, dated 3 August 1993


Audiovisual material

AV Box 1

Booklet, (175mm. x 225mm.) undated. Hand-drawn mock-up with coloured photographs of paintings by John Montefiore to be included in Tree of Changes. Preliminary notes for layout, headings