In line with his wishes, much of the archive comprises the progress of his texts, which are all here – with a few exceptions – as drafts, manuscripts or typescripts. But there is also plenty of personal and family material: photographs, postcards, faxed interviews. In May I was privileged to have had a sneak preview while it was still being catalogued by the archivist Chris Beckett, partly because I'm writing a book about Ballard. As it's entirely composed of artefacts – Ballard never owned a computer – perhaps this is the last solely non-digital literary archive of this stature.JG Ballard: Relics of a red-hot mind (Thanks, Jack!)
For Claire Walsh, Ballard's partner, the manuscripts of Crash are the highlights (she objected to her name being used in a first draft and Ballard changed it to Catherine). "The feeling of it being written when it was red-hot in his mind," she says, "and the handwritten changes, I think are absolutely fascinating."
I write books. My latest is a YA science fiction novel called Homeland (it's the sequel to Little Brother). More books: Rapture of the Nerds (a novel, with Charlie Stross); With a Little Help (short stories); and The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow (novella and nonfic). I speak all over the place and I tweet and tumble, too.