Of the 654 typescript pages that Furphy delivered to A. G. Stephens in July 1898, 415 have been preserved in Furphy's main archives. These pages have been transcribed, (with colour-coded additions [blue] and deletions [red]), and are published here to provide greater access to the archive for scholars, critics, teachers, and students. The transcription is accompanied by an essay on the typescript that outlines the textual history, including the effect of Furphy's revisions, and the interventions of editors and compositors employed by the Bulletin Library. A small number of textual notes are provided to indicate textual transfers between chapters or important textual cruxes.
After giving in to A. G. Stephens' demands to reduce Such is Life by replacing chapters two and five with shorter ones, Furphy continued to revise while preparing a clean copy typescript (now lost). This typescript was used by the Bulletin Library as setting copy. Furphy received galley proofs and responded to editorial corrections and suggestions on those pages, but many of the differences between the extant typescript were probably introduced by editors and compositors. The comparison sets provided below visualise the differences between the 1898 typescript as revised (TSr) and the Bulletin Library first edition for chapters one, three, six and seven. Visualisations also show the textual variation between TS chapter two and The Buln-buln and the Brolga (1948), and TS chapter five and Rigby's Romance (1946).
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TSr chapter 4: no comparison set available due to absence of typescript pages.