the doll games
shelley and pamela jackson


catalog: the doll writings


Catalog of Manuscripts and Other Written Ephemera Associated With the Doll Games of Shelley and Pamela Jackson, With Complete Transcriptions

  1. Dieting the easy way by Dawn
  2. A True life Romance by Dawn
  3. Jesse... by Dawn
  4. "Once a princess named Elaine," etc, by Melanie
  5. Madame Dotrovthnile's Hairdressing Book, by Mara
  6. dialogue between H & S, Harvey
  7. "I am writing about gloria Dawn" etc, Harvey
  8. "Moments with Mara" by Harvey
  9. "Parakeet, a flash" etc, Mara Dotrovnile
  10. "I am going to write about Peder Detranovich," etc,  Mara Dotrovnile
  11. Dialogue beween [sic] 2 gossips, Mara Dotrovnile
  12. Four love letters to Dawn on two sheets of paper, signed "Mike," "George," "George," and "John"

  1. Dieting the easy way by Dawn

    ["Book" printed in pink magic marker on 8 miniature pages of lined paper, of which the first is the title page and contains a dedication on the reverse, and only the second and third are numbered (1 and 2 respectively). Tentatively dated to coincide with the "Big Christmas". From the estate of Sue. An interesting presentation copy, perhaps not entirely well-intentioned.]

    Dedicated to a nice Fatso– Sue!

    Chap 1.
    for most fat people, skinniness is a wonderful dream. And only that. This book will tell you how to make that dream come true. Skinny people can help fatso's by calling them just that. Fatsos. Also by hiding the food and letting the fatso's fast till they lose a few pounds. But the first diet in this book, is this:
    1. No snacks!
    2 only one serving of food
    3 After dinner sit down, close your eyes, and degrade your fatness in every way you can think of. This will reinforce your desire to get thin.

    Suggested degradings:
    Fat people are dumb!
    how can you stand being such a fatso! etc.
    Have this be your motto: Fatsos are fatheads.

    If degrading yourself isn't convincing, call in a friend or member of the family to do it. This will hurt your feelings, but in this case that should be useful, making you work harder to become thin. If you want to speed up the process, you can regularly Do exercises: Jogging, pushups, chinups, etc.

    2 things to remember
    1. fatsos get heart attacks

  2. A True life Romance by Dawn

    [Story printed in orange magic marker on both sides of single piece of notebook paper, perforations trimmed. Some water damage rendering key passages illegible. Despite the poor condition, this one-of-a-kind item is one of the treasures of this collection. In it Dawn displays her sentimental side, but in a poignant last line, reveals that she cannot finally confine her affections to one man. Note conceptual and stylistic similarities of the closing sentence to lines 9-10 of Harvey's Moments With Mara.]

    The handsome young man strode along the street and then paused suddenly as he saw the beautiful...[illegible] tree. She had... [two words illegible] eyes and long auburn hair.
    "Hello," he said suggestingly
    "Hello," she replied
    "What's your name, beautiful?"
    "Dawn," she cooed.
    "I love you," he said simply, and folded her in his arms pressing her warm and yielding body against his.
    "Whats your name?" Dawn asked in a sexy voice.
    "Alonzo" he replied... [illegible]...and...[illegible]...
    When they parted tenderly in the evening, Alonzo had thoughts of marriage in his mind, and love in his heart. Dawn knew he loved her, and decided that unless she married, Josh, Jesse, Will, Ted, or Harvey, she would definitely marry Alonzo

  3. Jesse... by Dawn

    [Poem printed in purple magic marker on inside of folded index card. Outside bears a solicitation, presumably to Jesse himself, in the same hand and ink. Did the assignation ever take place? It is unlikely, knowing Jesse's character, but one must not underestimate Dawn's powers of persuasion. As ever, we see Dawn unwittingly undercutting the touching message of her piece with one of those crudely direct come-ons that are really her trademark. Superb presentation copy.]

    My darling Jesse!
    I long to feel his lips on mine, firmly pressing–
    His golden locks blowing in the night wind
    His blue eyes looking into mine
    saying what no words can express...
    I wish for his hands
    pressing mine, protecting me
    Oh Jesse...
    yet most of all, I long
    to hear his tender, husky
    voice saying simply;
    Dawn, I love you

    [arrow points to reverse, where we find:]

    meet me at 3:00 tomorrow if you want to have some fun, baby!

  4. "Once a princess named Elaine," etc, by Melanie

    [Untitled "book" of two double-sided sheets of hand-trimmed typing paper (approx 1' by 1'), taped at top. Text is in a neat small script in blue ballpoint pen. Tape has caused some blurring to top line of first and fourth page. Top lines of interior pages disappear in the gutter due to the unusual binding of this item. Probably from a "school" game, though ungraded, and not as tedious as most of her sister Mara's compositions. "Elaine" was a favored name in stories by this doll's ghostwriter. Near mint.]

    Once a princess named Elaine was strolling in her garden which was covered with roses. Pink, red, white and yellow roses. Her garden smelled very sweet. Elaine bent down to sniff her favorite rose and felt a nip on her nose. She hastily stood up and peered inside the rose.
     "You humans" said the fairy disgustedly "Always blundering about sticking your noses into other peoples business" Elaine apologized. "By the way," added the fairy "don't you have anything to eat? This may smell good but it tastes perfectly horrid!"
     "What would you rather have?" asked Elaine
     "Oh you are ignorant the fairy exclaimed "But African violet should be okay" She spat a blob of red rose at Elaine
     "I'm afraid I don't have any" Said Elaine picking it off her nose.
     "Oh you humans" she exclaimed and flew away in a huff.

  5. Madame Dotrovthnile's Hairdressing Book, by Mara

    [Stapled booklet (pages 2 3/4 inch square, single discolored staple centered at left edge) cover text in black pen with magic marker decorations, interior printed in pencil with mixed media (pencil and magic marker) Note non-standard spelling of author's last name (compare Parakeet, Dialogue, etc.) From the estate of Phyllis. All hairdos were worked out with Anne's help, as noted on cover. Presentation copy, near mint, dating from the "Big Christmas."]

    for Phyllis
    By Mara
    modelled by Anne

    The All-a-Braided Look
    For the Greek Look
    Make 5 Braids, pull furthest to the right around head and tie to other braid.

    The Kriss-Kross
    For the Maid Marian Look
    Great for casual outings!
    Pull hair back hold together with crossed twistys

    The doughnut
    For the Garden party Look
    Roll as in the rolled look, but use entire hair, tie twistie in back

    The Pompadour
    For an elegant Prom Look
    Pull hair at back to one side over twisty, then around front and back, tie twisty

    The Lions Mane
    for the wild look
    Tease hair with comb until separated, pull hair forwards and divide over face

    The Beehive
    Wrap hair loosely around head tuck end inside, pull other end up and over

    The pig-in-blanket
    For the Ballroom Look
    Do the Rolled Look but pull excess hair over roll and secure with twisty

    The honeybun
    Roll around twistie tie down ends of hair

    The Rolled Look for the dainty Look
    Seperate [sic] hair into 3 parts, take middle part and roll forward around twistie, tie.

    The Swept-over-pouf look
    For the casually classic look
    Brush Hair forwards over face
    divide in two, pull back and tie

  6. dialogue between H & S, Harvey

    [Dialogue in play form printed in pencil on small notebook paper with torn perforations at top. Poem is "graded" B+ in blue ballpoint pen. From a "school" game. The teacher seems to have been unable to repress a grudging attraction to Harvey's style. Who is S? Sue?]

    H hi honey, how ya doon?
    S oh hello! I'm right fine!
    H lets go to my apartment for a drink.
    S okay– don't tell mama!
    H we can do things afterwards too– on my water bed, haha, my little boobsy!
    S oh, you are so silly hee hee, don't! we're on a public street! ouch! don't touch me there, the mans looking! Bye bye honey!
    H see ya, toots--or should I say tits ho ho– shall we continue the conversation later– in bed, wink wink?

    B+– you did what I asked– I can't really complain about that! but you didn't really develop the characters– It sounds as if you wrote it to "get your kicks". I like your words, but your subject matter is not as good

  7. "I am writing about gloria Dawn," etc, Harvey

    [Untitled prose piece printed in blue ballpoint pen on both sides of a small notebook paper with torn perforations at top. "Harvey" in pencil in place of title. The attribution of a first name, Gloria, to Dawn appears nowhere else in the annals. Was Harvey mistaken? More likely, Dawn was embellished with a second name for one game only, which, as can be seen from the context, fell into the "school" category. The last line, falling on the verso, can be seen as an afterthought, and is a prime example of that breakdown of poetic diction in favor of the smirkingly crude we see throughout Harvey's work.]

    I am writing about gloria Dawn. She was very frail and delicate and gossamery. She was my girlfriend I looked at her tender plump breastypoo's, nestling in the collar of her dress like peaches in a basket– just as rosy and soft– and I would want to nibble on them and devour her. (her bottom was pretty nice too)

  8. "Moments with Mara" by Harvey

    [Poem printed in pencil (verse) and red magic marker (chorus) on inside of folded index card and signed by Harvey in pencil. On the other side of the card is a vivid semi-abstract mixed-media drawing (pencil, magic marker and white-out) with distinct sexual overtones, signed in purple marker by Harvey and with the title, 'Mara and I' printed on it in red marker, as well as a redundant legend (again, in purple) identifying this as a picture (abstract) and pointing out the poem on the other side, which is a stellar example of that combination of sentimentality and ribaldry so characteristic of Harvey. Lines 9-10: see notes on Dawn's True Life Romance. "From a "school" game? Displaying Harvey's gift for drawing as well as poesy, and signed on both sides, this may be the most precious item in the collection.]

    Ah... Mara...
    to feel you, warm and yielding
    against my strong chest,
    is bliss
    Ah... Mara...
    The glorious oneness I feel
    with your innocent lips
    upon mine, which I never
    feel otherwise, (except when
    it's Melanies, Dawn's, Philisses, anne's, or Jenny's lips)
    Ah... Mara...
    to feel warm and peaceful,
    after fucking long & vigorously
    with you,
    is an experience I will never
    Ah... Mara... My fair queen
    of love...
    I adore you.


    [On reverse, picture entitled 'Mara and I'; also the following text:]

    Poem (on other side)
    and picture (abstract)

  9. "Parakeet, a flash" etc, Mara Dotrovnile

    [Poem printed in blue ballpoint pen on both sides of a small notebook page with torn perforations at top. Poem is "graded" A+ in penciled script. Obviously from a "school" game. Displays the conventionality typical of the work of "good student" Mara. Does the parakeet represent Mara's caged sexuality? In that case, who is "the master"? Her superego, or the godlike human manipulating her body? As usual, we must ask ourselves whether the grader was under pressure to deliver top marks to this favored pupil.]

    a flash of blue sky
    hidden in a cage
    but still singing
    and giving a
     chirp, each
    morning, to welcome
    its master--and
    the new

    A+ You expressed your thoughts nicely.

  10. "I am going to write about Peder Detranovich," etc,  Mara Dotrovnile

    [Untitled autobiographical (?) piece printed in blue ballpoint pen on both sides of a small notebook page with torn perforations at top. From a "school" game. Again, little can be said for the literary worth of this piece, which is remarkable only for its scrupulous (but overdone) "niceness", typical of Mara. Note the unsuccessful attempt at rendering an ethnic type, hindered by Mara's near-total ignorance of the larger world.]

    4-29-77 Mara Dotrovnile

    I am going to write about Peder Detranovich. Mr Detranovich was our grocer who had just moved in where we lived before. He was old, and tan-faced, weathered looking, and Mel and I liked him immediately. He had just come from some other country, Poland or Russia, I'm not sure. Somewhere out there in the "wilds" as my mother would say. Naturally, He had an unusual accent, and people used to tease him. For a while, the big kids that lived near by would always mimic him. Mel and I would get really mad, and we would go to his store and cry afterwards (we were younger then). But I never saw him do anything but laugh at his own accent, and pretty soon the big boys would be laughing too, but with him– not at him. He was one of the nicest people I ever knew– and the friendliest.

  11. Dialogue beween [sic] 2 gossips, Mara Dotrovnile

    [Dialogue in play form printed in blue ballpoint pen on both sides of a single sheet of paper torn from a notebook larger than usual for this collection. Torn perforations at top. Piece is "graded" A+ in another hand with a note printed in pencil. From a "school" game. This piece from the usually dull Mara shows some uncharacteristic verve, no doubt because of its aspirations to comedy.]

    P   why how do you do, Helen! Fancy meeting you here! I have got a lot of things to talk about...Do lets sit down
    D  Hello, Penny! Did you hear about Mrs T and Mr V?
    P   Oh yes! wasn't it perfectly disgraceful? and him a lawyer-man and all! So respectable!
    D   and her a pillar of the community! She always went to the PTA meetings too...I beleave [sic] he corrupted her! never can trust the Big City types
    P   I couldn't agree with you more! Did you hear about Mr M lost at sea! Poor little Sally is crying her eyes out, the dear!
    D   It is terribly sad, isnt it? Poor man! Although I must say I didn't like him a bit– so rough and crude– but then, I daresay one shouldn't speak ill of the deceased.
    P   There's some as say he ain't dead at all, but was carried away by a rosy cloud that plumped down over him and then drifted away! I got that straight from Mrs B.
    D. Well, I don't hold much with such stories, do you? I must go, Penny... have to be on my way... have a lovely weekend! Ta Ta
    P bye, bye, Helen! Say hello to Joe for me! See you later! Toodle-oo

    A+ Your language is good and the use amusing. The conversation runs smoothly.

  12. Four love letters to Dawn on two sheets of paper, signed "Mike," "George," "George," and "John", collected in matchbox (Diamond brand safety matches). Small slip of paper is enclosed bearing the pencilled legend, "some collected love letters to Dawn"

    [The fact that these letters occupy two sides of the same piece of paper raises some doubt as to their authenticity. However, if they were in fact penned by Dawn herself, possibly to enhance her reputation as a lover, then their value to collectors is even greater.]

    1. "Dear Dawnie baby," etc. (recto), by "Mike" and "Dear Dawn baby," etc. (verso) by "George"

      [Two letters printed in blue ballpoint pen, one on each side of a single piece of small notebook paper, top perforations trimmed. The first letter contains some errata corrected by the writer: "boobs" was initially "boods", and there is a scratched out letter (lower case t, perhaps?) before the anomalous capital B of Baby in the closing salutation. Below signature on the recto is a small schematic drawing (not a photograph, as the letter-writer claims) of what appear to be the male genitals, with scribbled pubic hair; however, this drawing is almost completely obliterated by purple magic marker. Close inspection reveals that an inscription accompanies the image, though this is almost completely illegible. It reads, "PS does this convince you?" When was this interesting piece defaced by the censors, and at whose impetus? The magic marker bleeds through to the verso, which is fortunately however still completely legible.

      On this side there is some scribbling along the very top edge of the paper. One error appears to have been corrected at the time of writing: 'bod" may have read "bed." Is the signatory the same George who penned the next letter? If so, this one is probably of later vintage; in fact, the "Sat" mentioned here on which Dawn performed an unspecified favor for this writer may be the meeting "behind the Paynsave" for which she is beseeched in the next letter in our collection.]

      Dear Dawnie baby
      meet me tomorrow at 2
      and I'll give you somethin
      to remember! You have
      a great pair of boobs!
      I haven't seen the rest yet
      but I know it'l be great
      here's a photo of my
      private parts taken by a
      girlfriend of mine.
      bye, Baby, love
      Mike PS does this convince you?

      Dear Dawn baby
      thanks a lot for Sat!
      you sure have a great
      bod! Send me a picture
      of you, naked, to hang
      up in my room, and I'll
      send ya one of me!
      I love you dawn. Will you
      be my girlfriend? I'll
      get rid of my old one!
      (my parents are very permissive
      so long as it's a real girlfriend
      and we can do it in my room
      if you're my girlfriend)
      bye, from George

    2. "Dear Dawn, you don't know me yet," etc. (recto), by "George" and "Dear Dawn, I truly love you," etc. (verso) by "John"

      [Two letters printed in blue ballpoint pen, one on each side of a single piece of small notebook paper, top perforations trimmed. On the first side, penultimate sentence, "and are" is an afterthought, added just above the line. Is the the same George of the last letter? If so, his suit seems to have been successful. See note on the previous.]

      Dear sweetiepie Dawn
      You don't know me yet,
      but I have seen and
      admired your gorgeous
      self and would like to
      know you better (that phrase
      'would like to know you better'
      has a hidden meening)
      could you meet me behind
      Paynsave Sat. at 1?
      My girlfriend says I have
      a wonderful body and am
      great at sex, And I can tell
      that you do and are to! I think
      we are a perfect match!
      from George

      Dear Dawn
      I truly love you, though
      you probably haven't even
      noticed me. I composed a
      poem about you yesterday:
      Dawn stood
      like a graceful goddess,
      naked, in my room
      her breasts
      were like peaches
      bobbing on a tree
      in the wind.
      her beauty
      overwhelmeth me.
      by John