13 – Proofing


Donald Barthelme (1931-1989), author

Farrar, Straus & Giroux (est. 1946), publisher

Described as an innovative and experimental writer, sometimes satirical and sometimes surrealist, Donald Barthelme’s output includes novels and a children’s book, but he is best known for his short stories, many of which appeared in the New Yorker. The multiple copies of galleys for the two story collections shown here reveal important compositional and editorial decisions made by the author and his publisher.

All items from the Donald Barthelme papers

Material related to Unspeakable Practices, Unnatural Acts, 1968:

  1. Unspeakable Practices, Unnatural Acts. Galley proof stamped “Author’s proof,” Farrar, Straus and Giroux, November 8, 1967. The author was advised to use “any color of pencil except printer’s proof reader’s color” on this proof. Autograph corrections in Barthelme’ s hand, signed in pencil.  “AUTHOR’S PROOF | NOV 8 1967” stamped on all sheets. The story “Alice” is lacking from this state of the collection
  2. Unspeakable Practices, Unnatural Acts. Uncorrected proof. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1968. Spiral-bound proof with paper covers, “Alice” is not included
  3. Unspeakable Practices, Unnatural Acts. First edition. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1968. “Alice” is included in the first edition

Material related to Guilty Pleasures, 1974

  1. “The Teachings of Don B.: A Yankee Way of Knowledge,” Layout A, May 15, 1974. Page layout sheets for typesetter
  2. “The Teachings of Don B.: A Yankee Way of Knowledge,” galley page proofs, May 1974. Page proofs with autograph and typed corrections by the author
  3. Guilty Pleasures. Galley proofs, Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, July 12, 1974. “Editor’s and printer’s copy.” Also notes “long galleys with some autograph corrections in B[arthelme]’s hand,” July 12, 1974
  4. Guilty Pleasures. Uncorrected page proof. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, publication date November 4, 1974
  5. Guilty Pleasures. First edition. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1974