Updates and Comment on the Spirit Keeper’s Tarot

Just a quick (well, if you consider 20 minutes “quick”) video giving some updates on the tarot deck and personal commentary. It’s been frenetic and I have miles to go before I sleep, but I wanted to address some of what’s gone on during the process of self-publishing and selling this deck, and also try to answer some questions, like, will there be a second print run, or second edition?

Second print run of the deck as you’ve been seeing it? No.

A second edition? Yes, but not until 2019 is well under way. That’s because the second edition will undergo a redesign and be cast with a different energetic imprint. Also, I want to complete everything that needs to be completed for the first print run and give myself some time to learn whatever lessons need to be learned from the first print run.

Right now J and I are preparing your decks. First, they need to be consecrated, one by one.

Then assembled together into a batch and left together overnight to, I dunno, let the juju simmer, marinate? Have I been watching too many cooking tutorials on YouTube?

I’ll write up a blog post on that whole process at some point. By the way you can watch a video clip of it on my Instagram, here.

After that’s done, the decks need to be packed.

We bought these white shipping boxes but they need to be hand-assembled, one by one. Each deck is encased in bubble wrap, then tucked into the box. I put the certificate number of the deck on the outside of the box so J can see it. That way he can match it up with the name on his Excel sheet.

I’ll also share a blog post on the whole process for aspiring deck creators so you can see the behind-the-scenes of self-publishing, but again, for a future time. At this point, this whole ambition of writing a series on self-publishing your own tarot deck is probably not going to happen until after at least most of these decks are shipped out and I can breathe.

Our main floor den now looks like a warehouse. By the way, I hope it’s obvious to you that my process is by no means unique to me. I’m not working any harder than any other self-published deck creator. This just is what goes in to self-publishing your own deck. Every indie deck creator has to do this.

In the video I talk about the schedule I had planned and posted for pre-orders and orders, and then how that changed rather abruptly, and how people were none too thrilled with my changes.

That post, as you can see, would have indicated sales launch date of December 21, 2018. As I had noted in several places prior, pre-orders started as soon as that above banner went up, which was early October.

I thought I was doing something nice to those who’ve shown me support in the past by offering pre-orders first to those who have bought my online courses or purchased readings from me. However, this turned out to have a bit of the opposite effect of what I had intended. A lot of folks were pissed off about how I handled the so-called “VIP list” (dubbed that in a tongue in cheek manner, for lack of a more creative label).

I was accused of being discriminatory. Why would I have a “VIP list” and make people feel left out? When the email newsletter ended up in people’s junk mail boxes, which they didn’t check and therefore missed out on the opportunity, they blamed me, as if I had some sort of magical control over whether or not the email ends up in their junk box.

Those who supported me by buying my books but hadn’t ordered anything directly from me were pissed that buying my books didn’t qualify them as “VIP.” Hey, look, that is 100% a logistical matter– I don’t have your e-mail contact. I have no idea who you are. I can only send e-mails to those I have e-mail contacts for, and that would be people who’ve purchased courses or readings from me. I’m sorry I can’t read minds.

My “PR list” got me in trouble, too. How the hell did I choose who got to be on the “PR list”? Why were some people on that list and others not? And then how come the PR list folks got their decks like a month ahead of everybody else? Well, in part because of that two-week hiatus when I was in Europe and went dark, and therefore didn’t do anything deck related because I was out of the country.

Because of how fast the orders flooded in, and because it was literally just J, a one-man show, doing all intake of orders after his regular day job work hours, he mixed up the VIP list with the general public orders and we no longer had any idea who was who because everything got consolidated into the same Excel sheet.

We have a vague idea just based on the timing of when orders came in (VIP list folks would have in theory sent in their orders 24 hours before the general public), but if a VIP list person sent in their order after the 24-hour period, they would have gotten mixed in with the general public grouping.

Regrettably, that meant delivery delays would impact some VIP list folks because they put in their orders after that 24-hour period, and so got confused with the general public orders. And… that pissed of the VIP list folks because they no longer felt like “VIP.”

Also, we sold out on Crowley’s birthday (weirdly enough) well before even the first wave of promotions and buzz was supposed to begin. As big of a blessing as that was, it also turned into kind of a mini-nightmare. What should have been a disciplined, organized, and methodical business structure degenerated into total chaos.

With well over a thousand orders flooding in within seven days’ time (we had to then reject a bunch near the end because we had sold out, and then they got super pissed at us….), estimating at about one-third of them having follow-up questions that J had to answer, that’s 1,000+ e-mails to send plus another 333-ish e-mails to answer follow-up questions, plus most of them becoming a back-and-forth exchange that J had to keep up with.

There was data entry work. Each and every single one of those orders needed to be manually inputted into an Excel sheet and in 60% of the cases, J had to double-check and check again with the individual on address info, order details, etc. That’s another 600 or so e-mail exchanges going on just to make sure we had the right info.

I understand and totally get why there are people who are upset, whether it’s upset at not having had an opportunity to pre-order or at the fact there may be some delays in delivery date for your purchased deck. So I hope the video can help address some of those issues and why things happened the way they had.

For now, my focus is on doing the best job I can on fulfilling the orders for the first edition, getting that entire undertaking completed, and then taking some time to figure out exactly what direction I want to go in for the second edition.

Much love and to those who have been the embodiment of mercy, kindness, and understanding as I stumble and bumble through my first time ever self-publishing a tarot deck, thank you, thank you, thank you.

9 thoughts on “Updates and Comment on the Spirit Keeper’s Tarot

  1. Euphro

    Hi Benebell.
    I tried to write this to you on Instagram, but I actually dropped my phone while I was typing the comment on your post (my phone wasn’t damaged) and so of course, IG lost my words.
    I haven’t watched your “short” video yet, so I may be repeating what you say there.
    What I want you to hear from me is that I think how you personalize, touch, consecrate, “marinate,” every one of these decks is a gift from you. A lot of why your work and products are so meaningful to me is because you channel connection and goodness and your own sacred energy into what you do.
    You can’t hire an assistant to do that. You can’t rush that process. It takes however long it takes. Your deck would not be your deck without your hands and your consecrated oil and your intentions and all that you chose to share with us.
    What you’re doing with the first edition of your deck is not something to get done and check off (although I’m sure you feel that way some of the time : ) ). It’s the doing what you do that makes the difference, that creates and sustains the effect of your deck in the hands of each of us when we receive it.
    I am one of the lucky ones who was able to purchase a first edition. I thank you for all you are doing to make the Spirit Keeper’s Tarot something that will add to the collective good in the world.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Mrs T

    Hello hello….people are weird. I don’t understand the thought process that people use to justify some of their actions and words. I hope I never understand that kind of ugliness. I watched your video and was shocked that some people think it’s ok to dump their s**t on someone else.
    Anyway, I am so sorry I missed this edition. I have a lot of stuff going on right now and like you I just kinda assumed I would get a chance to order it at a later date. Darn it, played that hand wrong. Lol. Maybe next time.
    I just want to say thank you again for everything I’ve learned from you. From your published books, your i ching course and the tons of information you have worked so hard on and shared with all of us – free of charge!
    Anyone who could accuse you of anything but good intentions needs to take a look in mirror. And probably duck….it’s been my observation that that s**t always returns to sender.
    Love you now more than ever!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I don’t see your “product” as a tarot deck – it is a spiritual entity onto itself which we are lucky to see come into creation. I’m sure delivery of the decks will occur at just the right “divine” moment when people need them most – just as the deck sold out at a synchronistic date. Besides, you supplied plenty of reading material for those who purchased the books – that should keep everyone busy for the next few months until decks are delivered! Thank you for putting your work out into the world. Many Blessings to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. G. E. Martin

    I’m so very new to your information. I just got your book as a gift and am working through the companion course. Absolutely astounded and in awe of the breadth of information and detail you’ve painstakingly put into the work. Even as a long time tarot reader, I’ve been apprehensive to “get with the times” and actually start following more goings-on within the online Tarot community. That being said, I was sad (for myself, because I found out THE day after your deck sold out) but overjoyed (for you) with how well your deck did! Shine all them haters on honey, they’re just peanut butter and jealous that they can’t say they have a “first edition” of your deck. I can’t wait for the second edition, or whichever I am blessed to get! ~G


  5. And this is why we truly love and appreciate the wealth of information you share with us. This tarot deck and everything else means something to you. It is not simply a way to make money. I like the comparison to a woman being asked if she will have a second child when she has just conceived or given birth to a first. Really???? Enjoy your process and if you ever birth a second deck, then blessings to you. If not, then blessings to you.


  6. LB

    I’m sad I didn’t make it to buy a copy in time, but generally want to say that I understand that’s how it goes sometimes and apologize on behalf of everyone treating you poorly for making business decisions that are completely your prerogative. Your hard line when it comes to boundaries and working within your personal moral code is endless inspirational to me (as is your beautiful, intricate work). Congrats on your wildly successful first print!


  7. Like most less than sunny life experiences, you and J will be laughing about this in a couple of years, we never reminisce about things that go according to plan.. I’m incredibly impressed how much you’ve shared about the whole process, every indie creator should have it as required reading. All the best, I look forward to the deck, whenever I get it. Sharyn/Quirkeries


  8. Sending multitudes of love and good vibes. You have worked so hard on this project and done a phenomenal job. And remember, it is YOUR deck, go with your gut feelings! Or should I say, your baby? Let the vitriol run off your back, if you can. Life is too short. And congratulations on such a phenomenal selling record! Only best wishes coming your way. Betsy


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