Professional Tarot:  The Business of Reading, Consulting & Teaching by Christine Jette

Review by Lee Bursten

If you would like to purchase this book, click here.

This book is an excellent and much-needed resource for anyone who reads Tarot professionally, or anyone who is planning on reading Tarot professionally, or even anyone who is curious about what it would be like to read Tarot professionally.  It contains a wealth of information which readers will find invaluable, culled from Jette's years of experience as a professional reader.

 

Topics covered include deciding to read professionally, how to deal with money, marketing your business, using the Internet to promote your business, phone readings, how to handle difficult clients or clients who are in trouble, bookkeeping, counseling issues, teaching Tarot, and ethics.

 

What I like most about this book is that Jette, besides exploring each issue from a practical standpoint, also digs deeper and discusses the psychological or emotional issues surrounding the various topics, both from the point of view of the reader and of the client.  For example, in her discussion about handling money, she focuses on our ingrained attitudes towards money which may affect our feelings about charging for our services.

 

I would have appreciated this book anyway, but I appreciate it even more because it contains helpful contributions from my friend Diane Wilkes regarding two issues: setting up a website, and reading ethics.

 

In the discussion on teaching Tarot, the author generously provides us with her course outlines for two Tarot courses which she teaches, and invites us to use them freely.

 

Really, I think this is a great book for anyone to have who is even thinking about “going pro.”  The anecdotal material from Jette’s own practice is fascinating reading, and it’s invaluable as a reference book, so that as your business develops, you can check back and see how the author handled whatever problem or issue you may be facing.

 

The one thing I wish Jette had covered is the subject of providing mail or e-mail or instant messenger readings, where the client isn’t physically present or on the telephone, as I would imagine these kinds of readings have their own idiosyncracies and things to keep in mind.

 

I do have one nit to pick, and that is the author’s use of pronouns, which in this book are all feminine.  She justifies her choice as follows:  “Please note:  the English language does not provide me with a pronoun that means he or she.  I do not mean to exclude half the human race in my descriptions.  But I also don’t want to drive you crazy switching back and forth between he and she.  I have solved the dilemma by staying with “her” throughout.  My apologies to the gentlemen who are reading this book!”

 

This particular gentleman appreciates the apology but still can’t help feeling, when reading this book, that he is not the intended audience, especially since there are passages in the book where it really does seem that the author is assuming all her readers are female, such as the following:  “As women, we may have grown up with the idea that we are ‘supposed’ to take care of people and it comes up again as adults when someone needs us. […] Wake up, ladies:  prosperity is not male.  Please learn to value your worth as a tarot reader and charge accordingly.”

 

Personally, I would not have been driven crazy if the author had alternated between “he” and “she,” since I believe that is the standard way of handling this sort of thing and is something we’re all quite used to.

 

In any event, I heartily recommend this book, and I know I’ll be referring to it for many years to come. 

 

Professional Tarot:  The Business of Reading, Consulting & Teaching by Christine Jette

Llewellyn Worldwide

ISBN # 0-7387-0217-X

If you would like to purchase this book, click here.

You can read other reviews of this book here and here.

  

Lee Bursten has been studying the Tarot for 25 years. He is the author of a new tarot deck which will be published by Lo Scarabeo in 2004 or 2005. He owns over 170 Tarot and oracle decks and over 50 books on esoteric subjects including the Tarot, playing cards and astrology, and has written over 70 Tarot deck reviews for Tarot Passages.  He is available for professional e-mail readings at Aeclectic Tarot.


 

Review © 2003 Lee Bursten
Page © 2003 Diane Wilkes