When pioneering black female sci-fi writer Octavia Butler died (1947-2006) of abrupt but apparently natural causes near her home in Lake Forest Park, she was living alone, without heirs, her career somewhat dormant. Her best-known work, the 1979 Kindred, was almost three decades behind her. She published Fledgling in 2005 (review). After she won a MacArthur Foundation "genius" grant, plus Nebula and Hugo awards, many wondered what manuscripts she had lying in boxes, what stories might be published after her death.
The answer will come from researchers at the Huntington Library in San Marino, California, which announced it's to be custodian of Butler's papers--some 39 cartons and eight file cabinets' worth, according toThe New York Times. Why not the UW or some institution closer to where she lived (in her late career) and wrote? She moved here in 1999 and had roots in California. The Huntington Library press release doesn't specify if she had any extended family who controlled her estate or if any money changed hands for the papers.