Blowing Smoke

At the risk of jinxing the project's possible, eventual completion, we report here starting work on Oddballs. Although we generally find excuses to not issue prospectuses, we decided it might be appropriate in this instance. Turns out that this can be an excellent way to warm up for the main event - who knew? Here's a shot of the makeready for the outer forme (the press dislikes such unbalanced spreads, and required much adjustment of the platen bearers to even things out).

However, we are following past practise in issuing fewer copies of the prospectus (27) than there will be of the book itself (30). Each copy is sewn into a printed wrap, and the inside spread shows one of the Oddball biographies and prints from the book. We chose Hunter Thompson, for no particular reason. An interesting aside about this print came to us via new friend Miles Wigfield: turns out the print was featured on the cover of the Society of Wood Engravers quarterly journal Multiples, and elicited a rebuke from a member who objected to an image of someone smoking being given such prominence. Happily, the wet blanket was pelted with butts (some still glowing) in the Letters section of the following issue. As someone noted, given that it's Hunter S., Jim could have portrayed much more venal antics.

The prospectus: printed on the same Guarro laid paper we're using for the edition. The page is 8.5 x 12. 5 inches, the type is Dante. The engraving was printed by Jim on Zerkall, and tipped on to the page, as is the plan for the book (binder Natasha Herman is currently working on a dummy, figuring out all the shimming required to balance out 40 tipped-in prints & yield a pleasingly rounded back). Copies will be going out to HM's regulars in the coming week.