story collection, 2010

about 'in transit'
Dorothee Lang

The idea for an 'in transit' story collection accompanied me since a while, yet it took several approaches and seasons until the right time and concept came together. I tried a number of approaches in the sorting, and finally started to sort the texts in widening circles – starting with the country I live in: Germany. From there, the routes move through Europe, then cross into the USA and into Asia.

Beyond the geographical transit, there also is another kind of transit that is reflected in the collection: the transit of the world during those years, which influended life on many levels: the reunion of Germany. The global move from cold war into perestroika and the hopes of a new millennium. The drama of 9/11 and its aftermath. And: the internet revolution. Which made this book possible.


some notes on the process

I worked on this collection in phases. In each phase, I spent some time with the file on the computer, then let the whole thing sit for a while.

Then I printed it, and took the print-outs to the living room, and laid them out, to spend some time with them.

From there, I moved to the next phase: shifting texts, working with images, adjusting, revising.

For a while, I also played with the idea to put hand-made copies of 'in transit' together. In the end, this didn't work out, but creating those test copies was an important part of the process, they brought ideas like the photo pages, and also helped immensely to fine-tune the layout.

Plus, it was fun to saddle-stitch those transit pages myself, to get a taste of book-making, and to send out some hand-made sample copies - and receive some first feedback, like this one:

“last night i had fun with your 'in transit' airmail test book and found that i was fascinated with holding it. just holding it. there's something about the folded cover, and all the folded pages inside, combined with the photograph cover, that just 'feels' so good to touch. and squeeze. and open and close and touch and squeeze. there is something very 'sensual' about it.” - Karyn Eisler, Living ?s

In the first week of February, the proof copy of 'in transit' arrived here. I was a bit nervous when I opened the envelope, but there it was: the cover, the pages, the texts. All in place. Almost like a little miracle.

And to think that 'in transit' is now ready, to go on its way. Would be great to have a map, to see where these pages are moving around.

I hope you enjoy the journey along the transit pages.
- Dorothee

a special thanks to Steve Wing and to Karyn Eisler, who accompanied this transit, and sent thoughts and suggestions along the way. and another special thanks to Mel Bosworth, for reading through the almost-ready-manuscript, and piecing together a list with potential proofing notes and overall thoughts.