Corrections and Regrets


During the production of 'The Story of the Waite-Smith Tarot' disastrous things happened, which made the book look quite different from how it was intended. The finished book files were designed in PageMaker on a pc. I spent hours and hours carefully placing the illustrations along with the appropriate text, so the reader never had to turn pages to find an illustration. I always found this very annoying, and pointed this out in my reviews, when illustrations in a book did not follow the text. With modern printing techniques this should no longer be an obstacle.
The finished files in PageMaker-format were sent to the Australian publisher, Association of Tarot Studies (ATS); one CD for each of the four parts of the book. The arrangement was, that the publisher would execute the final punctuation and other minor grammatical corrections to adopt the texts to proper English language standards. Afterwards, he would produce the final pdf-files for the printer. Before that we had, with the first part of the book, attempted an arrangement, where the publisher sent me the corrections, whereafter I corrected the files. If we had continued with this arrangement, I would myself have created the final pdf-print files and the disaster would not have happened. However, these last corrections showed up being rather few, so we decided that the publisher could as well make them directly and produce the print files himself. This is where the disaster crept in.
Somewhere along the line, the carefully build-up book design was lost. The publisher transferred the files to a Mac environment and used Adobe's InDesign program instead of PageMaker. During this process the typefont was substituted by another, a slightly more narrow one. Consequently the text became shorter, while the illustrations stayed where they were, creating ugly bastard lines and empty pages. The publisher reported, that he had some problems with the typefont, but that he had solved them, which I, unfortunately, believed. There is one golden rule in print production to avoid disasters, and that is to check the final printing material - whatever medium is used - carefully, page by page, to be sure that nothing has happened last minute. I know that from my personal experience with print design.
When the first printed copies of the book arrived, I was shocked! How could this have been overlooked? Alone the empty pages and bastard lines were alarm signals. What I regret is, that I did not insist on approving the pdf-print files. Like a film director insists on final cut. One of my correspondents said to me: "There is no real comfort in it, that most people will not notice this, as long as You do! That's how it is.
To top it all, the readers missed the pun, in that the majority of the vignettes, depicting details from Smith's illustrations, had been carefully placed to satirically comment the text. Now they look like they were accidentally scattered in the text.

Wrong colour illustration:

The first/left illustration on page 116 mistakenly does not depict the Pam-A Lovers with pebbled back pattern, as is stated, but the same card with the roses/lilies back pattern.

The British and the USA/Canada editions of "The Occult Review"

On page 28 there is an illustration of `The Occult Review' with Waite's first article about the Waite-Smith Tarot. It should be noted that the original British edition of `The Occult Review' is a month ahead of the USA/Canadian edition. Thus Waite's article from December 1909 (as well as the other articles in the magazine) was first published in USA/Canada in the January 1910 issue (which is the one rendered in the book). Apart from this different dating the magazines were the same; some advertising pages being the exception.

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