Muriel Spark - dedicated writer and hoarder

Muriel Spark: photo from archive

The newest feature to be added to the National Library of Scotland website offers a unique resource for anyone interested in the life and work of the author considered to be Scotland's greatest living novelist.

Several years before her first novel went into print in 1957, Muriel Spark decided to keep a record of her activities, beginning a collection of material that is now the most comprehensive personal record relating to a Scottish author held by the Library. That the archive is so extensive is due to the fact that the writer, in her own words, is 'a hoarder of two things - documents and friends'.

A small selection from the world's largest Muriel Spark Archive can be viewed in our web feature, which has been produced with Dame Muriel's approval and assistance. Notebooks, photographs, letters - from famous names such as Elizabeth Taylor and Graham Greene - and even a library ticket are among the items that contribute professional and personal details to the story of her career.

The site's official launch coincided with the return to Edinburgh of the Library's travelling display Dame Muriel Spark - Scottish by Formation, which opened today at the Writers' Museum in Lady Stair's Close and runs until October 30. At the opening ceremony, Christine Lloyd, founder and chairman of the Muriel Spark Society, read out part of a personal message from Dame Muriel in which she refers to the exhibition as an 'honour' of which she is 'very proud'.

8 July 2004

Speak me