The Warren Beck collection consists of manuscripts and other items.
Manuscripts in the collection are extensive, including several variant drafts and carbon copies of his writings. Many pages bear Beck's handwritten corrections. Titles include The Blue Sash and Other Stories (short stories, Antioch Press, 1941); Final Score (novel, Knopf, 1944); Pause Under the Sky (novel, Swallow and Morrow, 1947); Into Thin Air (novel, Knopf, 1951); Man in Motion: Faulkner’s Trilogy (University of Wisconsin Press, 1961); Joyce's "Dubliners": Substance, Vision and Art (Duke University Press, 1969); and dozens of short stories. Also present are many pieces and segments of larger works of scholarship and criticism from Beck's years as an English professor at Lawrence University, and his participation in writing workshops and conferences and programs like the Breadloaf Writers' Conference. For example, the collection includes: drafts and revisions for "Art and Formula in the Short Story"; Beck's pieces about the work of Robert Frost, John Steinbeck, Ernest Hemingway, D. H. Lawrence, W. Somerset Maugham, and other important writers; dozens of pieces about the study of literature including nineteenth and twentieth century authors, writing, and themes; essays on writing including topics like style, poetry, and narrative writing; and much more. Also present are some plays written by Beck. Several of these he eventually adapted into short stories. There is also a play adaptation, by Marilyn Mills, of Beck's novel Into Thin Air. In addition, there are many book reviews and articles written by Beck. Many of the articles can be found in printed form in the magazines present in the collection.
Beck's archive also includes syllabi, schedules and other teaching material, as well as some notes for preparing lessons.