News articles, essays, and other kinds of stories about The Brautigan Library.
Woodcock, Claire. We Need to Radically Rethink the Library of Congress Classification. Literary Hub, 2 February 2022.
The Mayonnaise System may be a pipe dream for library cataloging, but institutionalizing a more thematic approach to how we use libraries is an interesting thought experiment.
Greenberg, Alissa. The Library of Unpublished Books. Poets & Writers, May/June 2020, pp. 12-14.
"Inspired by a 1971 novel by Richard Brautigan, the Brautigan Library collects unpublished books, creating a fantastic archive of stories unaffected by publishing trends—and a window into the minds and dreams of its contributing writers."
Temple, Emily. 50 Fictional Librarians, Ranked. Literary Hub, 16 Oct. 2019.
The Brautigan Library is ranked #30 in this survey. The article itself describes the Librarian in Brautigan's novel The Abortion, but, as a fun fact, provides a link to The Brautigan Library.
Corpet, Anna. Radio France Internationale (RFI)
Interviewed by Corpet regarding The Brautigan Library. RFI broadcasts around the world from Paris, France. Corpet is the American correspondent for RFI. Follow Anna Corpet on Twitter, @annecorpet.
Burbank, Megan. This Might Be the World's Only Library of Unpublished Manuscripts: Vancouver's Brautigan Library Honors a Northwest Literary Icon. The Seattle Times, 10 Apr. 2019.
Cole, Sean. The Room of Requirement. This American Life, 29 Dec. 2018.
Episode #644 of This American Life
The Brautigan Library was featured on episode #664, The Room of Requirement, of This American Life, a weekly public radio program heard by 2.2 million listeners on over 500 public radio stations in the U.S., with another 2.5 million people downloading each episode as a podcast.
As a featured guest, I talked about my work as The Librarian for The Brautigan Library, a curated collection of more than 300 unpublished manuscripts by international authors inspired by a fictional library described by Richard Brautigan in his novel, The Abortion: An Historical Romance 1966, published in 1971. Producer Sean Cole interviewed founder Todd Lockwood and myself to tell the story of The Brautigan Library in Act Two of the episode: Book Fishing in America. Listen.
Brautigan's fictional library was turned into reality by Lockwood in Burlington, Vermont, in 1990. In 2010, I negotiated the move of the library to Vancouver, Washington, where it is currently housed in the Clark County Historical Museum. Future plans are for the library, and its manuscripts, to move to Washington State University Vancouver, where it will continue in my role as "The Librarian."
The Brautigan Library is an offshoot of my research and scholarship associated with Richard Brautigan, the Washington-born author said to best capture the zeitgeist of the counterculture movement during the late 1960s-early 1970s. My scholarship, available at the American Dust: The Life and Works of Richard Brautigan website, is internationally regarded as the most comprehensive resource regarding Brautigan, his life and works.
The full episode is archived at the This American Life website, or can be downloaded as a podcast.
Laskow, Sarah. 13 Wonderfully Specific Libraries Reveal Their Oldest Treasures. Atlas Obscura, 2017.
Aaron, Kumasi. "A Library of Unpublished Books? The Message Beyond the Pages." E. W. Scripps Company, 24 Aug. 2017.
A television story produced for national distribution throughout the Scripps network. Scripps is a national media company, operating thirty-three television stations in the United States. This story was broadcast in Baltimore, Denver, and other cities.
Story on Denver 7 (ABC), Denver, CO, website.
Story on WPTV (NBC), West Palm Beach, FL, website
Korfhage, Matthew. "Best Library of Failure." Willamette Week. 11 July 2017.
Available online as "There's a Library in Vancouver Full of Hundreds of Books That Have Never Been Published, And Never Will Be."
Mikals, Rik. "There Is a Library in Washington that Features Unpublished Books." 98.3 KeyW. 8 June 2017.
A Pasco, WA, radio station ran this story, derived from the Atlas Obscura, below.
Rossis, Nicholas C. The Brautigan Library of Unpublished Manuscripts. 13 June 2017.
Anonymous. The Brautigan Library: A Library of Only Unpublished Manuscripts. Atlas Obscura June 2017.
Anonymous. 2013. 3rd Annual (inter)National Unpublished Writers' Day Workshop on Jan. 27. The Daily Insider 25 Jan. 2013.
Anonymous. Museum Offers Free Writing Workshops. The Columbian 26 January.
Enzinna, Wes. Brautigan's Heirs: A Thwarted Novelist's Tale. Harper's Magazine (blog) 25 Jan. 2013.
Kern, Dave. The Right to Write Exercised at Vancouver Celebration. The Columbian 28 Jan. 2013, pp. C1, C4.
Schiller, Nicholas. From Cool to Useful: Incorporating Hobby Projects into Library Work. ACRL Tech Connect, 9 Jan. 2013.
Anonymous. Unpublished Writers' Day Celebrated with Workshop. The Columbian 19 Jan. 2012.
Enzinna, Wes. Man Underwater: The Democratic Fiction of Richard Brautigan. Harper's Dec. 2012, pp. 76-80.
Vogt, Tom. Artist, Magazines Give Author, Vancouver Museum A Nod. The Columbian 28 Dec. 2012.
Vogt, Tom. Bits and Pieces: It Comes with Mayonnaise. The Columbian 27 Dec. 2012.
Vogt, Tom. Author To Read from Brautigan Biography. The Columbian 15 Mar. 2012.
Vorenberg, Sue. Brautigan Library: Day That Gets the Word In. The Columbian 28 Jan. 2012.
Anonymous. 2011. "Legacies of Richard Brautigan." HUGE July. 34-37.
Anonymous. Open-Mic Session To Celebrate Brautigan. The Columbian 11 Jan. 2011, p. C3.
—. "Unpublished Writers Will Gather at Museum." The Columbian 22 Jan. 2011, p. E3.
(NOTE: this article downloads as a .PDF file)
—. WSU Vancouver and Clark County Historical Museum Present National Unpublished Writers' Day. Oregonlive.com 7 Jan. 2011.
—. WSU Vancouver Professor Speaks on Author Richard Brautigan at Poetry Night. Oregonlive.com 7 Jan. 2011.
Swanson, Jessica. "Brautigan Library To Elevate Craft of Writing." Northbank Magazine Winter 2011, p. 28.
Wastradowski, Matt. Author Inspires A Holiday. The Columbian 29 Jan. 2011, p. D1.
Adams, Kelly. Unusual Library Honors Ideas of Late Author. The Oregonian 16 Oct. 2010, pp. E1, E8.
—. Museum Presents The Brautigan Library Challenge. The Daily Insider 4 Oct. 2010.
Albright, Mary Ann. Brautigan Library to Call County Home. The Columbian 4 Oct. 2010, pp. D1, D6.
Alling, Brenda. Public, Democratic Home for Personal Narratives. WSU Today 28 Sep. 2010.
—. Bringing Brautigan Home: DTC Program Helps Relocate Library for the Unpublished. WSU Today 15 Feb. 2010.
Anonymous. "From Carnegie to Brautigan." Clark County Historical Museum Newsletter. Autumn/Winter 2010, p. 3.
Anonymous. Clark County Historical Museum and WSU Vancouver's DTC Program Bring Brautigan Home. The Daily Insider 10 Feb. 2010.
Atkinson, Spring. "Brautigan Library Gets New Life at CCHM." The VanCougar 1 Nov. 2010, pp. 1, 4.
Baker, Jeff. Richard Brautigan Library Opens in Vancouver. oregonianlive.com7 Oct. 2010.
The Brautigan Library, a collection of almost 400 unpublished manuscripts inspired by an idea in Richard Brautigan's 1971 novel "The Abortion: A Historical Romance," officially opens at 5 p.m Thursday in the Clark County Historical Museum. Brautigan, a Tacoma native best known for "Trout Fishing in America," imagined a library where anyone could deposit a copy of their own book. Todd Lockwood, a Brautigan fan, started such a library in Vermont in 1990 but it closed in 1995 for lack of funds. John F. Barber, a faculty member at Washington State University-Vancouver, arranged to have the collection brought to Vancouver. The Clark County Historical Museum is hosting an exhibition about Brautigan called "Autumn Trout Gathering," until the end of January. It includes sound and video installations, photographs, posters and memorabilia of Brautigan and his readings in San Francisco.
Benedict, Michaele L. The Library Lives! Write Rite Wright Right 30 Mar. 2010.
Blackfeather, Cheri. The Brautigan Library in Four Parts. Vox Pop PDX (podcast) 13 Oct. 2010.
Levitt, Alice. Vermont's Former Brautigan Library Finds New Home in Washington, and Online. Seven Days: Vermont's Independent Voice 24 Feb. 1010, pp. 20-21.
Anonymous. A Library of Unpublished Manuscripts. The New Fillmore. 2 Feb. 2009.
A short article noting the intent of librarians at the Presidio Branch Library to commemorate Brautigan's creation of a fictional library from this real life library.
Appelo, Tim. Slum Sparrow Millionaire. City Arts Tacoma Apr. 2009, pp. 16-21.
Stewart, Adam. "Re-Opening the Tower of Poetry or Troutfishing in WSUV." The Vancouver Voice 2 Dec. 2009, pp. 12-13.
Anonymous. Museum May Become Home To Brautigan Library. The Columbian 1 Oct. 2008, p. C6.
Anonymous. "John F. Barber on Richard Brautigan." 28 Nov. 2007.
Originally available at: www.dougsmith.info/Download1.html; but no longer available.
A 10 question 'innerview' with Dr. John F. Barber on writer Richard Brautigan. Barber's answers are insightful, to say the least, and help show why Brautigan matters (maybe even more now) in the 21st century. For example, on why Brautigan matters, Barber notes the novel "Williard and his Bowling Trophies" seems to foreshadow text-messaging. "In Watermelon Sugar" pre-dates the Jonestown or Waco massacres and speaks to the desperate acts people will undertake when their reason for existence seems threatened."
Anonymous. "Sombre Anniversary Recasts Light on an Awe-Inspiring Writer . . . Left for Dead in the Shadow of America's Beat Generation." Independent Herald (Glasgow, Scotland), Seven Days section, Sunday Herald, 31 Oct. 2004.
O'Kelly, Kevin. "Unusual Library May Get New Chapter." The Boston Globe 27 Sep. 2004: ***?***.
West, Jessamyn. A Visit to the Brautigan Library. jessamyn.com. 12 June 2000.
An online account of a visit to The Brautigan Library written by web designer and online researcher, Jessamyn West. Contained within the "Journal" portion of her website.
Green, Lee. "Making Room for Lost Causes." American Way 1 May 1996, pp. 78, 80, 82, 84.
A profile of The Brautigan Library, started in the spring of 1990 by Todd Lockwood. Modeled after the library Brautigan featured in his novel The Abortion, The Brautigan Library accepted unpublished manuscripts from writers around the world until 1995. Included are short descriptions of several of the manuscripts submitted. American Way is the in-flight magazine published by American Airlines, Fort Worth, Texas
van Bakel, Rogier. Paperback Proving Grounds. Wired, vol.3, no. 09, Sep. 1995, pp. 56, 58.
Brief mention of The Brautigan Library as an introduction to information about web-based publishers and virtual libraries. Says, [T]he nonprofit library wants to raise awareness of "the grass-roots level of our culture," and steer the "street-level view away from the ivory tower" (van Bakel 56).
Salm, Arthur. "Public Eye." San Diego Union-Tribune Lifestyle Section, 30 Jan. 1993, p. F2.
Sikorski, Ray. "Remembered in Montana." The 23, vol. 3, no. 3, 1 June 1993.
Publication of The Brautigan Library in Burlington, Vermont. Relates what Brautigan friends Tom McGuane, William R. Hjortsberg, Greg Keeler, and Tim Cahill felt his reaction would have been to a library modeled after the one he wrote about in The Abortion.
Chapman, Christine. A Library for World's Nobodies. The New York Times, 25 Sep. 1992, pp. **?**.
Profiles The Brautigan Library calling it "the last resort—and sometimes the first—for writers who want to see their unpublished manuscripts bound, shelved, and read by people who travel long distances to find them."
Ingrassia, Lawrence. "A Fictional Library Becomes A Real Place With Unreal Fiction." Wall Street Journal 28 May 1991, p. A1, A11.
Profiles the Brautigan Library in Burlington, Vermont.
Jedeikin, Jenny and Robert Love. "Brautigan Library." Rolling Stone 7 Feb. 1991, p. 13.
The full text of this article reads,
For all aspiring writers growing tired of the endless stream of rejection letters: You can finally see your words of wisdom on a library shelf. The Brautigan Library, in Burlington, Vermont—modeled after a library Richard Brautigan described in his 1971 cult novel The Abortion—is a nonprofit business that accepts manuscripts from anyone for a twenty-five-dollar fee; the only catch is that the work must be unpublished. "The Abortion has been a favorite book of mine for years," says founder Todd Lockwood. "The idea is that anyone who pours their heart and soul into a novel or work of poetry can then immediately put it in a public collection for others to read." And in just seven months the library, which is run by a volunteer staff of thirty Brautigan devotees, has amassed 150 books. Visitors can peruse a wide range of material—from the tale of a man who lived on his Harley-Davidson for five years to a former mechanical engineer's life philosophy.
"What we're creating here is a long-term historical time capsule," says Lockwood, "that could become a great source for people who want to know what is going on at the grass-roots level."
Anonymous. "Blame It On Brautigan." Harper's Sep. 1990, pp. 42-45.
Examples of books submitted to the Brautigan Library in Burlington, Vermont.
The library, which describes itself as a home for "folk literature," charges a twenty-five dollar fee for binding and cataloging any manuscript; seventy volumes have been cataloged since the library opened last April .
—. "A Library For People With Tales To Tell." New York Times 8 May 1990, p. A12.
Profiles the Brautigan Library, saying it was created in memory of Brautigan and is reserved exclusively for unpublished manuscripts open to public readership.
Garchik, Leah. "Unpublished Works Welcome At New Library." The San Francisco Chronicle 3 May 1990, p. A10.
Garner, Dwight. "Brautigan Would Have Loved This." San Francisco Examiner 17 July 1990, p. B3.
Discusses the Brautigan Library in Burlington, Vermont, which serves as a repository for unpublished manuscripts submitted by authors and open to public readership. Says Brautigan conceived of "such a nonjudgmental, very public library in his 1970 novel The Abortion."
—. "The Library That Time Forgot." Village Voice, vol. 35, no. 24, 12 June 1990, p. 34.
Says the library is a tribute to Brautigan and that it operates exclusively to store unpublished texts, written by ordinary citizens.
Stecklow, Steve. "A Home for Books Not Published: Local Vt. Library." The Philadelphia Inquirer, 29 Apr. 1990, p. AO2.
Ratner, Elaine. "The Effect of Brautigan." California Living 14 May 1972, pp. 26-27.
Descibes how people, after reading Brautigan's The Abortion write, visit, or bring their books to the Presidio Branch of the San Francisco Public Library.
Hartston, William. "Home For Unpublished Books: William Hartston Visits the Brautigan an Unusual Library in Burlington, Vermont." The Independent ***?***.