This is mostly a maintenance entry. I have cleaned up a few earlier entries with minor errors. Don’t feel compelled to go looking, they don’t change any content. I did add a little to the About the author page, and cleaned up a few errors.
Wednesday morning I went about my usual routine which of coffee, reading, and acting as a cat settee. The routine concludes with the unceremonious activation of the computer and commencement of the day’s writing and research tasks. That morning, nothing would rouse the tiny computer from its repose. Some time during the night the little SSD in the computer died, as terminal and permanent a death as heart failure or a stroke.
Through no deliberate effort or plan, I have three books in my library with remarkably similar covers. That may not sound too interesting. Publishers often produce thematic collections with unified cover designs. Some topics, published by different companies, can have shared design traits as well. True-crime mass market paperbacks are almost always black with red accents. Books of the Nazis or Hitler are likewise black and red and you will need to look very carefully to find a book about Hitler that does not also have his recognizable mug on the cover.
The Case of the Credulous Quoter, or, Dead German Printers Tell no Tales. Continue reading
Occasionally I engage on some tedious research that, I know, has little, if any, practical value. Yet I am incapable of resisting the urge to do the work. I find this occurs most often with odd citations or errors in documentation or sloppy references and I eventually spend hours tracking down a quote, primary source, obscure re-print, or an equally irrelevant detail, knowing all the while that I will never find a publishable use for such efforts.
A blog, however, is the perfect place to compile these irrelevancies. So, in what may become a recurring series here at PBS, I present the first episode in Adventures in Forensic Bibliography.
I’m not talking about trees and green spaces. This is the bibliographic process of describing a book’s collation, what P. Gaskell called a formula that shows “how the book was—or ideally should have been—constructed” using a special system of notation.1
The ‘pen’ of Pen,Book,Sword has been largely metaphorical lately. Therefore, here is a short entry on an actual pen I picked up in February this year from Papeterie Rěaumur, Paris.
Consider this part two of the ‘fluff entry’ theme I am working through. Expect to see something related to short-essay writing on Monday.