New Crowley Books -- When?
I know this is probably a futile question, but I'm relatively isolated from fellow Crowley enthusiasts where I am... Anybody have any idea when we will see the much anticipated new edition of the Confessions? Much less all the other goodies promised in the OTO publishing update now 4 years ago?
It seems incredible that so much material is out-of-print.
We have all been waiting and speculating for years now but no announcements from OTO incorporated have come out regarding publishing in ages. They keep saying they are in the 'editing' stages or some such @#$().
The most 'recent' news is as follows from 2013:
O.T.O. PUBLISHING NEWS
We have, as many of you know, issued two large paperback collections of Crowley’s fiction, The Drug and Other Stories, and The Simon Iff Stories and Other Works (Wordsworth Editions, UK). These were done for a nominal royalty fee in order to sound out the depth of the market for Crowley in paperback at a low price-point, and they seemed like good titles for introducing Crowley to a wider audience. The endnotes were a lot of work, and give a preview of some of the new research done for Crowley’s unabridged Confessions. If you haven’t ordered, do—they’re very reasonable (Simon Iff is currently (April 2013) $4.50 and The Drug is $7.19 with free shipping worldwide from www.bookdepository.com). And very readable, too. They are not at all what you might find floating on the internet—these have been carefully proofed and corrected, and draw on all available archival sources.
I have only just emerged from a very deep editorial rabbit-hole that lasted much of the last year, and am pleased to report that all of Crowley’s surviving diaries are now in page proofs—totalling over 6,000 pages as things now stand. This was a necessary exercise in order to develop a consistent editorial standard across the entire series, as we’re about to publish the first new volume of diaries to appear in some fifteen years.
As many of you know, the second volume of his Collected Diaries appeared in 1998 as The Vision and the Voice with Commentary and Other Papers (Equinox IV(2))—we are developing a slightly revised reprint of this. We are in the final stages (indexing—or rather, reindexing!) what will be the third volume in the series (chronologically), The American Diaries (Equinox IV(3)). This will be followed by the first volume, The Early Diaries (Equinox IV(4)), which is in second page proofs. We are optimistic that The American Diaries will go to press around mid-summer.
We have also developed a new edition of The Holy Books of Thelema (Equinox III(9))—currently in final proofs except for the appendices (the joys of typesetting Egyptian hieroglyphs are new to us here). This is a high priority for reissue.
We also have a new edition of The Diary of a Drug-Fiend that includes Crowley’s corrections and final additions, with his notes and a good editorial apparatus, needing only the introduction completed. We have newly-mastered versions of several out of print “backlist” titles—Liber Aleph, Eight Lectures on Yoga, The Law is for All, The Revival of Magick and Little Essays Toward Truth, that are nearly ready to be sent to press. Some of these may be released via print on demand and ebook at a price point that will be affordable to students.
A few months ago Apple revised its specification for its ebook format to allow free online updates for purchased ebooks. This is great, as we were planning to release via Apple as their file format is very secure. This new feature will allow us to improve the ebooks as we find necessary corrections, add material, or even substantially revise ebooks to use newly-supported features in the Apple ebook environment. Ebooks will of course look very different in, say, five or ten years, than they do today. We dislike, in principle, the idea of charging twice for the same book, so this is a welcome feature. It may also permit us to release in ebook before we release a print version (e.g., before the indexing for the print book is completed—an index being less important in an ebook, which behaves very differently and has a built-in search function). It is usually considered bad for business to release in ebook before print, but we’re more interested in saving money for our readers than sticking them for the maximum possible. That said, we’d like to be able to ensure that respectably-printed hardcovers remain available, for the comparative few who want them.
The unabridged Confessions is at an advanced state—it has had final proofs read for everything but the new editorial matter, and was indexed (though it now needs re-indexing). A few years ago I was so far along that at one point I described it as an “in press” title in a bibliographic citation. That proved too optimistic, as it was put on hold to allow the key volumes of diaries to appear first. As the first three volumes of the Collected Diaries cover 1894 through 1919, they span most of Confessions (which ends with a small amount of material for the early 1920s). This approach—releasing the first three volumes of the Collected Diaries—will allow the diaries to be crossreferenced by page in Confessions, making both sets of books much more useful as references.
We may, conditions permitting, begin issuing Confessions this year with volume 1 (this first volume has little parallel material in the diaries), and try to issue further volumes concurrently with the publication of the diaries, i.e., issuing the book volume by volume. Confessions volume 1 is basically complete, and features a great many previously-unseen photographs, and some new (and surprising!) research. The book is set and laid out to match the 1929 Mandrake Press first edition typographically, and will use a binding and paper of similar quality, with a great many full page photographs.
I did make much of my research for Confessions available to Richard Spence, Richard Kaczynski and Tobias Churton for their recent Crowley biographies—this happened at different times, so that their respective books reflect a little of the new Confessions but at different stages. Their own new research is incorporated and gratefully cited in the new Confessions. But the last few years of work on the new Confessions has turned up amazing new material and research.
A slightly technical digression by way of explanation and apology is in order. Confessions, the various volumes in the Collected Diaries series, and many other projects have been delayed by a painfully long and protracted series of technical problems having entirely to do with the software platform used by O.T.O. for book production.
Since 1991, our major books have been done in Adobe Framemaker, a powerful large-document book publishing program—we began using Framemaker with version 2 before it was owned by Adobe. This program made possible the programming of extensive crossreferences and complex indexes characteristic of our bigger books, like Liber ABA (Magick) and The General Principles of Astrology. Years ago now, Adobe decided to kill off Framemaker on the Macintosh, so we moved the projects to Windows, and for a time were able to maintain and further develop the books with that work-around, unsatisfactory as it was (The Drug was produced in Frame under Windows, for example). But stability issues (crashes) increasingly became a problem, so we decided to move everything to the new Adobe book production program InDesign (which was used for Simon Iff). Incomprehensibly, Adobe chose not to provide a migration path for people moving book projects from their old book production program (Framemaker) to their new book production program (InDesign)—at least, they don’t provide one that doesn’t throw away most of your programming. O.T.O. has worked with a third-party provider of a conversion utility that—after about a year of extra programming—eventually succeeded in preserving our original cross-references. Even with this, conversion still requires 50+ hours per book of hand programming to get things working properly. And sadly, all our Framemaker indexes are lost, i.e., not convertible. Well, I did them once, I’ll do them all again—but indexing is unbelievably tedious and time consuming—and contrary to popular belief, it has to be done in your head, knowing the entire book, and not using computer aids (that works for directories, not esoteric books).
There are other books that were nearly completed in Framemaker some years ago but stalled in the press due to the financial pressures occasioned by our legal exertions in the UK. These include Jesus and Other Papers (The Equinox III(2)), The Philosophy of Magick and Mysticism, The Unabridged Commentaries on Liber AL vel Legis, Crowley on Drugs, The Book of Oaths and The Golden Rose. These books need different amounts of further conversion and indexing, and will necessarily have to follow after our near term releases discussed above.
So in short, please excuse the long delay in the appearance of books, and thanks for your patience.
There are other books that were nearly completed in Framemaker some years ago but stalled in the press due to the financial pressures occasioned by our legal exertions in the UK.
So it's all the fault of Starfire Publishing?
They also sued at least one other UK Thelemic publisher in order to suppress a book that included documents with their sex-magick "secrets", so not all your fault, Michael.
Left unmentioned in this 2013 statement is their main legal matter, the Thoth tarot suit against US Games.
Is litigation the new promulgation? There is an awful lot less of AC's work in print than there was before the (c)OTO revival.
Looking forward to "a hundred flowers blooming" (as Mao did not quite say) when the UK copyrights on most of AC's work expire at the end of the year.
Ig666: Looking forward to “a hundred flowers blooming” (as Mao did not quite say) when the UK copyrights on most of AC’s work expire at the end of the year.
And also for (the few) USA copyrights that allow AC's works (that were published in the US) entrance into the public domain.
Is litigation the new promulgation? There is an awful lot less of AC’s work in print than there was before the (c)OTO revival.
This must qualify as the lowest form of magick. For an organization charged with the duty of promulgation above all else, to actually have caused less material to be in circulation before they showed their sorry aspect to the world: that is quite an achievement and they are left with zero credibility at all.
The real reason for the delay, as may be glimpsed from reading between the lines of what has since turned out to be a rather derisory excuse for an apology above, is that H.B. wants to hog the whole show and be credited personally (notwithstanding the standard basic nods and acknowledgement made to Spence, Kaczynski, Churton, Starr...) as being really the one and only legitimate commentator, annotator, publisher and "editor" of Crowley's work. Forget any idea of farming it out to capable confederates in the (c)oto, (c)oto "cabinet" or anywhere else in the interests of getting the stuff published and 'out there' that much quicker --- he'd rather the work stay stuck down there with him in this rabbit hole of his own making for just as long as it takes.
Just hoping you aren't already dead before you'd finally get a chance to read whatever whenever it comes out,
Norma N Joy Conquest
Did the change from "fill" to "kill", kill their publishing?
Nice one, Azidonis, and nice to see you back lately.
Thanks and thanks. It's been a while. 🙂
Hail Azidonis! Long time, etc... Your return at almost the same time as Los after almost the same length of time seems extraordinarily serendipitous (not to mention synchronistic!) Tell me there's no connection!
Rewelcomely & jumping to conclusionly yours
The connection is that a friend told me, "You gotta see this thread! Los appears to have claimed 8=3, and they have pounced all over it".
So I came back to see what all the hoopla was. Figured I'd at least say hello while I'm around. 🙂
Hey Tiger! Missed you too! Thanks! 🙂
I 'memba you... Welcome back! Now we are just missing Paul Toner, Markus, NOX, Satan's Advocado, eindoppelganger, kidneyhawk, Anna A...
Nice to know that you're missing me, Chris! On a more serious note, I do understand that problems can arise when attempting to release new books. But, I have no understanding for the O.T.O.'s reticence/taciturnity. Why can't they just keep us informed?
BTW, does anybody know what the current state of affairs is?
I do know that the OTO recently spent time and presumably money editing and publishing a book about themselves about a year ago:
However as I am not a member of their org I do not know if it was put out by different hands/editors than Hymenaeus Beta and therefore if it truly impacted publishing the Diaries and Hag.
My gut says all these delays are probably due to copyright and legal issues with who-really-owns-AC-copyright-and-gets-the-monies?
Wouldn't the (c)OTO's centennial be in 2078, not 2015?
Pretty telling that the link you provide is the next-to-last "News" item they have posted.
The long delays are not because of copyright issues. They are the (c)OTO because they own what copyrights exist. The "(c)" is the old-fashioned way of typing "copyright"; "c" is of course also the first letter of "California". They bought the copyrights from the UK bankruptcy authorities (who owned all AC copyrights from the '30s til then) in 1992. All publications of copyright Crowley works by them before 1992 were pirate editions. This may be among the major sticking points in their lawsuit against the Thoth tarot publishers: you can't license what you don't own.
CS: My gut says all these delays are probably due to copyright and legal issues with who-really-owns-AC-copyright-and-gets-the-monies?
As Ig666 says, there's no confusion here. (c)OTO bought AC's copyrights from the Queen. Depending on when (or if) any given work was published, there are expiration dates. Most of his published works enter the public domain in UK and US on Jan 1, 2018. His UNPUBLISHED works don't expire in UK til 2039, or some similar future date that I have not memorized.
But, I have no understanding for the O.T.O.’s reticence/taciturnity. Why can’t they just keep us informed?
Because they contemptuously don't really give a fig for "us"? And/Or maybe they are simply just embarrassed about how long it's taking, and are keeping sheepishly mum and hoping that meanwhile nobody (like "us") will make a fuss.
BTW, does anybody know what the current state of affairs is?
Yep, HB does, and he don't wanna tell. (see above).
As Ig666 says, there’s no confusion here. (c)OTO bought AC’s copyrights from the Queen.
And thereby hangs a tale. Before snapping up the copyrights from the Crown, the (c).O.T.O. made a big to-do in the courts about McMurtry having been the rightful heir (after 1991 this got shunted into the background and was rarely referred to again, being the weaker of their two claims to authenticity.) But they wouldn't have ever bought the copyrights from the Crown for a mere pittance (£3,000) in the first place if they hadn't been misguidedly advised to do so by Gerald Suster, who was then Secretary of their London group which I led, and had also studied these fine points of Law at Cambridge University and, sincerely believing the (c)O.T.O.. was a good thing and the real deal at the time, recommended to them in the strongest terms that they buy them up. Shortly afterwards, when the true 'restrictionist' nature of things in the (c).O.T.O. began to reveal itself he was absolutely horrified to realise his huge mistake and we both subsequently resigned, but by then the damage had been done and until his dying day he was to regretfully refer to the matter as having been the biggest magical error of his entire life.
And here endeth today's history lesson.
Soror Achitha’s Vision or The Amalantrah Working being Liber DCCXXIX and Liber XCVII
by Soror Achitha 555=420=417=26 IX with The Wizard Amalantrah 729
and The Master Therion 666 and also Frater Arcteon and Soror Barzedon
with parallel excerpts from Rex de Arte Regia Series Anno XIII & Series Anno XIV
and other extant contemporaneous primary sources
with later collected first-hand accounts appended
edited and annotated by Elsie Gray Parker
finest quality limited comparative critical edition published under the imprimatur of the A:.A:. by Hell Fire Club Books for the centeniel anniversary of The Amalantrah Working
Well, at least the books ABOUT Crowley that we've seen have been pretty good. I just read Netherwood, the latest version, and thoroughly enjoyed it. (But, even this was a largely a re-issue). A mellowed, aging Crowley in his final days...