unfinished novels

hello there, am new to the site and was jus lookin through the timeline of buk's life. A couple of unfinished novels get mentioned, A place to sleep at night from 1956 and The way the dead love, from a decade later, aswell as an unfinished novel called Horseplayer from around the same time as Post Office. I was just wondering if any of you Buk worms can shed any light on what happened to these manuscripts. Did any of the material survive in any future short story form or did they get scrapped altogether. I've read a few buk biogs but never heard them mentioned before. I think the titles are great. I can work out what the subject matter of Horseplayer may have been but what aout the other two? Come on guys, help us out. Top site btw.


Founding member
hmmm...thats a good question...maybe some of the material was used in some of his published novels? I dunno...I'm sure somebody knows something about something.


Founding member
I can't remember that and -sadly- I didn't bother to research into the fiction, so I have very few notes on things like that.

I remember it began talking about FrancEye -in fact I told her to go to the library to read the book, she had no idea B had written it- so my guess is it was written during the early 70's, probably '73 or '74, but that's just a wild guess.

c'mon, mjp, you live reasonably close to the library. go there and take a look at it! You could also double check whether their KCET copy is the 30 or the 60 minutes one!


Founding member
Especially this ominous "The Poet" would be interesting. I remember every name on that list mentioned somewhere (mostly in the letters) but this one? Dead silence.

If he has really written it while living with Frances and Marina why isn't there a single word about it anywhere? Regarding it thick (maybe finished?). It sort of comes out of nowhere.

Please, please you people living quasi next door, go there and tell us why, who, where, when and what, what, what!
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Founding member
Ha, I'm looking for this thread and finally found it :) What's about The Poet. Somebody was i that library? It was finished? It's possible to xero or scan this manuscript?
I finally dredged up this thread using the search function. I'm surprised that so little is known and that there appears to be only some marginal interest in four unfinished novels. Anyone have any additional info after nearly four years?

The four are:

A Place to Sleep the Night
The Way the Dead Love (that's a short story in South of No North, so maybe Buk salvaged what he liked and it became that)
The Horseplayer
The Poet

I suppose it's possible or even likely that some of the remaining material ended up in the finished novels, but it would be great to have a gander at these.


Founding member
There's some info on the first two unfinisihed novels in the last Yearbook. Roni will be happy to send you a copy ;-)

Besides The Poet and The Horseplayer, there are other unfinished novels, such as The Fool, and Streetwalker -please don't quote me on the titles- and another one I can't recall now. Truth be told, though, they don't amount to much, The Poet being an exception, of course. Most of those titles were working titles which eventually became the novels published by BSP.

If you're waiting for any of those unfinished novels to surface, don't hold your breath.
[...] there are other unfinished novels, such as [...] Streetwalker [...]
Just to feel good, contributing something:

Besides The Poet and The Horseplayer, there are other unfinished novels, such as The Fool, and Streetwalker -please don't quote me on the titles- and another one I can't recall now.
I have original submitted chapters of the street walker and the fool done and 82 and 83
I think expound is the word you're looking for. However, if you'd prefer that Marci extrapolate, I'll gladly follow along as you two discuss the relevance of these chapters to other issues that have nothing to do with them. :rolleyes:
Wow this thread is so old I honestly didn't expect a reply. I have for each, the streetwalker and the fool, 3 chapters with cover letters to John Martin for each chapter submission, signed and dated, both with their original file folders and date span written on the tabs. I researched it years ago and the fool became the short story, "the bum". What's so interesting are the changes. Anything else you want to know. Where are you located, I am opening a buk bar on Los Feliz ca
Hi Marci: We are located all over the globe. We are also interested in seeing Buk's writing and changes are particularly interesting to us. You seem to be fairly low-key on this, but it's not clear whether:
  1. you are just letting us know off-handedly that you have these;
  2. you have interest in selling them;
  3. you might wonder what they are worth;
  4. you might be wondering how to post scans on this very website, which would be most welcome; or
  5. all or none of the above.
For the most part, we are, to varying degrees, Buk historians, fans, and collectors. Any further info would be greatly appreciated.

Also, just to let you know, there are two bars here in the Boston area named Bukowski Tavern. Other than some décor, there's nothing particularly Bukowski about them and I can guarantee that 80% of the clientele at any given moment has no idea who Bukowski was or what he meant to literature. However, that's no reason not to do this in CA; you may get more knowledgeable folks there, although we have our fair share of literary eggheads here in Boston (perhaps that's the very problem).
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Hey I am aware of the Boston bars plus one here in Santa monica and a few around the world. I went to the one in Amsterdam and wasn't impressed nothing to do with buk. I really had no idea how this works and was packing my shit up to get ready "FOR MY AWESOME BUK BAR" going through paperwork, researching and found you guys. Anyhoos i am happy to share what I have but probably wouldn't sell. My family was in the used boo business on Hollywood blvd for 35 years book city, mentioned in a few bios plus red was a good family friend. I began collecting in 94 right after buk died. Most of my collection came from red, signed stuff that wasn't called for. These two manuscripts did not come from red. I had athird one which I believe was barfly, but can't find it. I would hate to think it was stolen. So how do I share?

P.s. Buk is very loved and known here. Makes sense
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Pretty good extrapolating / expounding sofar. Pls keep going . Thanks for posting more on these unpublished writings. And of course more on the bar, in case I get back to California.
So how do I share?
If you have photos or scans on your computer, when you are in the posting window, look over to the right and find the "Upload a File" button next to the "Post Reply" button. Then you can upload the files from your computer. Welcome to the forums and good luck with your venture!
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