Ian Rankin archive ready for exploration in online event


AN archive of the crime novelist, Ian Rankin, will soon be available to view at the National Library of Scotland’s reading rooms.

Mr Rankin donated his archive to the Library in 2019, and also made a substantial donation towards the creation of a post to itemise and catalogue each item for the Library.

This Thursday Mr Rankin and Rosemary Hall will discuss the archive and its contents over an exclusive online event where they will also announce that the archive is ready for consultation.

Ian Rankin and his archive - Scottish News
(Neil Hanna Photography) Ian Rankin gifts archive to the nation

Ms Hall, a Curator who carried out the cataloguing of each item  said: “It’s been a privilege to work with a collection of such international importance. What archivists don’t typically have is the ability to involve the author whose archive we are working with.

“This allowed me to gain a richer insight into the materials. It’s exciting that we can now share this with the public.”

During the curatorship, Hall meticulously surveyed approximately 50 boxes of material, and the cataloguing process has resulted in 387 files or manuscripts that people can view at the reading rooms.

Rosemary Hall, Curator - Scottish News
Rankin’s works were archived and catalogued by Ms Hall.

This includes correspondence with literary figures such as Ruth Rendell, as well as publishing companies, production companies and charities. Not surprisingly, police officers feature regularly in correspondence.

Described by Rankin as “a pretty complete author’s life, late-20th century-style”, the archive material dates from 1972–2018.

The archive will be available at the Library’s reading rooms from Friday.