We're working on the new Scot Sothern book, Sad City.
The book combines fotos with stories. The relationship between the fotos and the stories fall into two categories . . .1/ the stories are riffs on what might be happening in the fotos and 2/ the fotos are jumping off points for ruminations about Scot's past.
Do we sequence the fotos and let the stories fall where they may? Or do we sequence the stories and let the fotos fall?
Of course we're not taking either of those approaches. No, we're treating the complete thing as a body of work and sequencing both the stories and the fotos. Quite the juggling act.
Sad City will soon be available for pre-order. Sign up to the STRAYLIGHT newsletter to receive advance notice and to get first dibs on the Special Editions.
It’s 1978 and I’m renting a clapboard dump high on a Silver Lake hill looking out toward Hollywood. The guy next door, on the other side of the wall, tells me he used to be a Black Panther and he did time for murder and he steals cars for a living. I ask him if he can get me a car in the two-hundred dollar price range and he tells me he’ll keep an eye out. He lives with his sister who is a whore and totally blind. I ask her if she’s ever accidently climbs into a cop’s car but she doesn’t have much of a sense of humor. Late one quiet Friday night I’m reading and have the door open when the sister next door starts screaming. It’s not my business but it continues for a while so I go next door and knock. The Black Panther opens the door and apologizes for the noise. His sister is on the floor in the middle of the room pulling her hair and beating on her head and screaming. I ask him if she’s alright and he says she will be in a little while. I go back to my place and open a beer and a little while later she stops screaming.
Top to bottom: Page spread from the initial dummy; story; page spread from the initial dummy ; sequencing.
Been moving the OFFICIAL OTTAWA fotos around, selecting, ordering them on paper. It's interesting to see what's there and how it looks on spreads and turns.
I've been using rudimentary software and getting magazine-size publications printed by Blurb. Problem with Blurb, though, is they only perfect bind and I'm sure I want some of the OO pix to go across the gutter. Perfect binding sucks at that, you lose stuff in the gutter.
But, like I say, it's been an education working with the images. Even though there's the gutter issue, not to mention the size I'm getting from Blurb (8.5 x 11 in.) is considerably smaller than the final publication will be, being able to see the images in book form is helping me a lot.
There are a few approaches to edit/sequence; most serious fotogs will pin work prints to a board, move the actual physical fotos around, as opposed to working with their virtual counterparts. In the end I always get the good-old work-print/board thing going. But being able to hold, handle and turn pages seems like a swell first step. And these days, what with POD being so easy, it makes sense to me to rough stuff out in this way.
Of course, the hard work is still to come, the agonizing before the actual locking down and production of the "finished" product.
Getting ready to send some of the 2nd edition of Back to me., by Christina Riley, to their new homes.
The 2nd edition of Back to me., by Christina Riley, has arrived from the printer.
The pre-orders will be packed and mailed this weekend. If you haven't ordered one yet . . . what are you waiting for? This book, which Pete Brook called "tense, honest and important" is slim but, after you've looked through it once you'll either want to go back to the beginning and look again, or put it down and think about it.
And . . . we're slowly getting SadCity, by Scot Sothern, sorted.
Right now we're working on the binding. We're having this book French Stitched and the first sample of the binding left something to be desired, so it's back to the drawing board, turning over stones to see how we can make it work.
We're also planning on leaving in the creep (the bits of the page that stick out when the folios are put together, this is usually trimmed).
SADCITY, by Scot Sothern. Coming this fall . . .
When I was in high school there was this kid named Carl who had a cleft pallet and honked like a goose when he talked. He was probably the worst looking kid in town; he had acne and he was pigeon-toed. One day, on my motorcycle, a BSA Hornet, in the school parking lot, Carl rode his bycycle into my path and I centerpunched him. Carl and his stack of books and his lunch box went flying. I rode around him and I imitated his goose voice. “Hey Carl, watch the fuck where you’re going?” Other kids were watching and I did a wheelie and zoomed out into the traffic. I wonder if Carl remembers it the way I do.
We've thought long and hard about the editioning of STRAYLIGHT books. Our tactic (if you can call it that) is to print as many copies of each publication as we can afford (our mothers having taught us that debt is bad). That this approach leads to limited editions is a byproduct of our fiscal responsibilities and not some cynical attempt to create rarity. We're not that interested in books as a fetish (though we are interested in making sure our publications look and feel, for lack of a better word, nice).
Which brings us to Back to me., by Christina Riley. We printed 100 copies, which sold out in less than a month and a half. This book really struck a cord and the reviews were excellent. As a result STRAYLIGHT has decided to produce a 2nd edition. This new iteration of Back to me. is slightly smaller than the 1st edition (8x8 inches as opposed to 8.5x 8.5), is printed on slightly less weighty paper (80lb stock as opposed to 100lb) and is not signed or numbered, but contains all the original images.
The 2nd edition will, like the 1st edition, come with an original 5x7 inch print . . .
So, you might ask, "Why should I get a 1st edition of any STRAYLIGHT publication if you will be doing 2nd editions?"
First of all, we may not do 2nd editions of every sold out publication, it depends. And the 1st editions will always be bigger, printed on nicer paper and numbered. We're not into creating rarity, we want anyone who wants to have and to hold a STRAYLIGHT publication to have the opportunity. But the 1st editions will always be more special.
Back to me., 2nd edition, is now available for pre-order. Delivery expected early September. Order your copy here.