The finished pamphlets have reached their new owners, and it’s time to continue telling the story of “The Awful German Language”. A brief recap: We were holding a pamphlet swap at the book arts forum (a good place to be, I encourage you all to join us there!). I decided to not simply make a empty book but fill it with content. My choice fell on “The Awful German Language” by Mark Twain – a text I liked from the moment I first read it. I cut several pieces of soft and traditional linoleum to illustrate the text. I showed you some of the prints, and held a little give away, with Dymphie being the winner.
I first inkjet printed 3 copies of the text and then started to print the cuts between the lines. (Traditionally one would of course combine a cut with movable type and letterpress print all of the page. – I wish…)
I made 3 copies, so that I can throw away some of the pages should the prints turn out too bad.
When they all were printed, I started binding them, of course. I tried a reversed book cloth hinge binding which included covering the book with the boards already attached. I never had done that before, and therefore first made a mock-up – a book with empty pages, just to try the binding. I gathered the pages according to the quality of the prints, and bound them in reversed order: So after the mockup I bound a book with the less beautiful print, then those with better prints. The idea of course was, to get some pratice before I may spoil the better copies.
Unfortunately, the last book, the one with the best prints, turned out to be the worst when it comes to the binding: For some reason the back cover boards turned out bigger than the front board. I still don’t know whether I simply attached them at different distances from the spine (the boards are bevelled towards the spine and I cannot feel that on the finished book). But it also looks like the protuding corner is not square, so I can only suppose that I really cut them to different size without noticing. (It’s the topmost in the stack above, it is even visible in this photo.)
After pondering for quite a while, feeling equally uncomfortable with either option, I decided to keep the badly bound version to myself and send off the other two.
And what do I learn from this experience? – Overconfidence is a more dangerous trap than inexperience.
I am printing a small edition of the book right now, one print a day. I estimate it will be finished in 2 weeks. – I’ll let you know when you can purchase your own copy.
Thanks for reading, and have a nice day!