Here's a quandary that I don't come across too often. I am reprinting classic Australian comic strips (as most of the Readership will know). In the last few days I have been working on a Second Volume of John Dixon's Air Hawk. What do I do when there is a spelling mistake in the original artwork's text? See the illustration to the left below. John has clearly written "WAGGON" in the text prior to the strip heading to the newspapers, and just as clearly a line has been placed through it. (I am not sure what was actually reprinted in the newspapers, as I am working from proofs from the artwork as the newspaper editors would have received them.) Do I correct the spelling of the word (and thus in effect censor the original)? Or should I clean up the copy (as you can see on the right) and leave it as John intended, irrespective that there is still a spelling error contained therein? Or should I clean it up and spell it correctly?
I am already presently editing out the dates and office records on the margins of the strips, which is I suppose in essence a form of censorship. Or is it? It is material that wasn't seen on the original reproduction in the newspapers. I clearly know I have an opinion (which I shall follow in the publication), but I am still interested in your thoughts....
...acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to elders past, present, and emerging, and extend that respect to all First Australian peoples.
Over the past decade (2011 - 2020) Nat has self-published ten comic-related books and was Publisher-Editor of Oi Oi Oi! - the last nationally-distributed comic book of original comics stories to appear on Australian newsstands. He edited Inkspot, the journal of the Australian Cartoonists Association for 14 issues from late 2015 to 2019 and is a current member of the ACA's Committee. In his spare time, he is a husband, a father (to six) and grandfather (to fourteen), and works in the Psychiatric Emergency Centre in Queensland's largest public hospital.
Comicoz is Nat Karmichael's publishing imprint. Nat is committed to preserving a permanent collection of Australian comic and comic strips. He feels that there is a need to recognise comics' contribution to and depiction of Australian culture.