University of Delaware Library

Special Collections Department


PAUL BOWLES, 1910 - 1999


SHORT STORIES

Paul Bowles is justifiably acknowledged as one of the preeminent short story writers of the twentieth century. Throughout the 1940s, Bowles published stories in literary reviews such as
Partisan Review, View, Wake, and Zero; in such commercial mainstays as Mademoiselle, Harper's Bazaar, and Horizon; and was selected several times for inclusion in Best American Short Stories. Truly a world traveler, Bowles was inspired by place and cultural behavior to create memorable effects of ambience and conflict in his stories.

Bowles's first published collection, A Little Stone, came out in England in August 1950, and was followed three months later by an American edition, The Delicate Prey and Other Stories, which included the title story and one other, "Pages from Cold Point." Bowles's British publisher, John Lehmann, had refused to publish these two stories because he feared the book might be censored due to their violent content. Still, the collections received good reviews on both sides of the Atlantic and Bowles's reputation as an author of note continued.

Paul Bowles's other published collections of stories include A Hundred Camels in the Courtyard (1962), The Time of

A Little Stone

45. A Little Stone: Stories. London: John Lehmann, [1950].

Friendship (1967), Things Gone and Things Still Here (1977), Midnight Mass (1981), and Unwelcome Words (1988). His Collected Stories, 1939-1976 (1985) featured an essay by Gore Vidal, who includes Paul Bowles's short stories "among the best ever written by an American." Paul Bowles continued to write stories up until the last decade of his life. They were published regularly in a variety of literary journals, including Antaeus, which he co-founded with Daniel Halpern and helped edit, and The Threepenny Review, a Berkeley, California, review with which he was also associated. As with his novels, filmmakers cited the great visual appeal of his

Points in Time MSS

59a. Points in Time. Typescript,
with autograph corrections, n.d., 10 pp.

stories and a number of them sent Bowles treatment proposals and adaptations.His papers at the University of Delaware Library include numerous manuscript drafts of stories from all periods of his
career. Extensive revisions andcorrections reveal the painstaking craft Paul Bowles brought to his writing.

Short Stories: Items in the Exhibition

43. "Il Savait Jouer de l'Orgue." Typed manuscript with autograph corrections, n.d., 5 pp., signed "Paul [Frederic] Bowles / 34 Terrace Avenue / Jamaica, N.Y.C. U.S.A."
This unpublished story was probably prepared for submission to the French literary magazine transition, which Bowles had discovered when he was still in high school. Bowles has deleted "Frederic" from his typed signature on the final page.

44. "Bluey: Passages from an Imaginary Diary," in View (New York), Series 3, no. 3 (October 1943), pp. 81-82.
View editor Charles Henri Ford later published "Bluey," which Bowles originally wrote at the age of nine, in his anthology of modern stories, A Night with Jupiter: and Other Fantastic Stories (1945).

45. A Little Stone: Stories. London: John Lehmann, [1950].
Nearly all of the stories in Bowles's initial collection had appeared previously in Harper's Bazaar, Horizon, Life and Letters, Mademoiselle, Partisan Review, Penguin New Writing, and View; however, anticipating censorship, the publisher decided not

Bluey: Passages from an Imaginary Diary

44. "Bluey: Passages from an Imaginary Diary," in View

to include "The Delicate Prey" or "Pages from Cold Point" in A Little Stone, and Bowles agreed to this omission.

46. "The Scorpion," in View (New York), Series 5, no. 5 (December 1945), pp. 9, 16.
This issue also included Bowles's translation of "She Woke Me Up So I Killed Her," by Jean Ferry, whose "contributor's note" describes him as "one of the newer French writers."

47. The Delicate Prey: and Other Stories. New York: Random House, 1950.
This first American collection of Bowles's stories included the title story and "Pages from Cold Point," both of which had been cautiously excluded by the British publisher of A Little Stone. Random House's jacket blurb for The Delicate Prey said the collection's seventeen stories shared a "Gothic preoccupation with

A Gift for Kinza

49. "A Gift for Kinza," in Esquire

violence." Bowles dedicated the book to his mother, "who first read me the stories of Poe."

48. Film Treatment I for The Delicate Prey by Paul Bowles, by Joseph McPhillips. Typescript photocopy, n.d., 26 pp.
This film treatment by the longtime headmaster of the American School of Tangier and close confidant of Paul Bowles proposed Moroccan actors, Arabic dialogue (with English subtitles), and maximum visual use of the Sahara in keeping with the "atmosphere" of Bowles's story. McPhillips also wished to incorporate drums and reed instruments of South Moroccan music and hoped that Bowles would execute the sound track.

49. "A Gift for Kinza," in Esquire (New York), Volume 35 (March 1951), pp. 56, 119-121.
This story was subsequently published in The Hours After Noon and later collections as "The Successor."

50. The Hours after Noon: Short Stories. London: Heinemann, 1959.


51a. The Hours After Noon Treatment. Screenplay by Rob Fruchtman based on the story by Paul Bowles; treatment by Kely Lyons. [New York]: Waldron Productions, Inc., [1984], bound typescript, 44 pp.


51b. "The Hours After Noon" Screenplay, by Rob Fruchtman. Typescript, labeled "Third Draft, February
1984," 91 pp.
An information packet includes "Questions and Answers" for project investors, the story treatment, biographical information on the director and staff, a budget, and supporting letter. Fruchtman described Bowles's writing as highly visual, with great potential for translation to the screen. The film remains unproduced.

52. A Hundred Camels in the Courtyard. [San Francisco]: City Lights Books, [1962].
For the front cover of this collection of four tales related to kif smoking, Bowles contributed his own photograph of a kif pipe from Marrakesh, a naboula from Tetuán, and a palm mat from Rissani. The rear cover photograph of Paul Bowles was taken by Allen Ginsberg.

53. Paul Bowles Reads A Hundred Camels in the Courtyard. Tiburon-Belvedere, Calif.: Cadmus Editions; Olympia, Wash.: Dom America, [1999].
Originally released on a phonodisc in 1981, which has long been out of print, this double compact disc release once again makes available the only unabridged reading by Paul Bowles of one of his books. Paul Bowles's printed essay accompanies the recording.

A Hundred Camels in the Courtyard

52. A Hundred Camels in the Courtyard. [San Francisco]: City Lights Books, [1962].

 


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