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Curious Signed Bukowski book (1 Viewer)

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
http://cgi.ebay.com/charles-bukowsk...goryZ378QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

First, I'll say that the signature is probably real. What bugs me is the back story.

I have never heard about Bukowski sitting in bookstores charging $25 a signature, or have I missed that page in the bios?

Also, this is #9 of 700 which should be also signed on the inside, but the listing does not mention it and only shows it signed on the cover. If they were all signed on the cover then this is 100% authentic and the backstory is 100% bullshit. Does anyone here have one of the 70 that were signed and is it signed on the cover? I know that some Wormies were signed on the cover for the Buk chapbooks.

Again, I think that it is real. It just seems like the seller is trying to authenticate it by fabricating a story about how it was acquired, when it needs no made up story....

odd.

Bill

p.s. This is not to say that the sotry is made up. It just seems odd to me....
 

ROC

It is what it is
Yes, I have other limited, signed wormies that are signed on the cover.

Yes, I think the back story is probably bollocks as well.
 

chronic

old and in the way
Yeah I agree that this auction has a bit of a stink to it. I'm quite sure that Bukowski never sat in any bookstores charging money to sign his books. Also, while I may just have a mistrusting nature, the signature looks almost exactly like this one. Not to say that it's forged, but I would be wary. The seller has zero feedback by the way... another reason for caution.
 

ROC

It is what it is
Ahhhhh... huge difference in those two signatures... while still being obviously from the same hand. It's definitely real... just seems like a bullshit story.
 

mjp

Founding member
What about the back of the book where the number is written? What the hell is written there? All the numbered Wormwoods on my shelf have very small, neatly written numbers. That looks like a word. Did they spell out the numbers on the signed copies?

Anyway, whether or not the book is real, I wouldn't buy a paperclip from a new seller. Especially one named xfoxxracerxgurlx86. And I wouldn't buy that book in that condition. It's too easy to find perfect copies of Wormwood. Why do I feel like I've seen this very same copy on eBay before? With the plastic or lamination or whatever the hell it is...

And (and, and) the story about Bukowski charging $25 for his signature is very funny.
 

ROC

It is what it is
Yup, they also sometimes wrote out the limitation number in letters.

Shit condition though.

I charge a great deal more for my signature... just one of the reasons why no ones ever asked for it.
 
M

MULLINAX

And I sent an insulting series of question to the seller earlier today!

I also started drinking quite early.
 

cirerita

Founding member
Bukowski did sign his books at a bookstore in 1986. A flyer was printed to promote the event, which was reviewed in one of the local papers, Random Lengths. I have that article somewhere in my files and I think to recall there's a pic as well. The seller probably made up the charging-$25-per-signature part to make that chap more valuable. Or he simply made it all up...
 

ROC

It is what it is
MULLINAX, maybe whenever you get the desire to send one of those insulting questions, you should just come to buk.net and post... again.
Maybe you could get up to 6 posts a day?
 
M

MULLINAX

But I like this group and I would rather that my rancour, bitterness and angst be directed at those who deserve it.

(Thinking to self: "Lemme see now, with this post my average will rise to...")

***

And there is joy in the Mullinax Manse again today, for the Postman delivered the March, 2004 issue of BEAT SCENE magazine. Hats off to Kevin Ring, the editor. He is a "great editor" to use a phrase that we've seen before, although in a somewhat different context. Ahem.

Page 54: FANTASTIC PICTURE of our man Buk. Karsh of Ottawa, Bresson, Adams and Liebovitz can go fuck themselves. The portrait of the Bukster that Ring has here is a worldbeater. Oh man! the dignity, wisdom and sheer power come through, without any effort on Buk's part.

And it's also the first time I've seen an article on the SPECIAL EDITIONS like the NEW YEARS GREETINGS, BROADSIDES, posters and such.

Great stuff. Most magazines that publish stories by and about Buk are CRAP, but BEAT SCENE is the kind of LOW-BROW stuff that this LOW-BROW bum loves.

One caveat: Ring praises the worthless CD documentary spoken word biography "THE LIFE AND HAZARDOUS TIMES OF CHARLES BUKOWSKI. NEITHER BOUGHT FOR GOLD, NOR TO THE DEVIL SOLD." This is, as alert readers of my previous posts have learned, a worthless audio biography, with even more worthless music. Narrated by a droning British dolt. A total piece of crap. On a par with the worthless ORO MADRE magazine.

Oh, and the stuff on Barbara Martin and Crumb: again a first for me.

Anyway, BEAT SCENE delivers the goods.
 

chronic

old and in the way
Bukowski did sign his books at a bookstore in 1986. A flyer was printed to promote the event, which was reviewed in one of the local papers, Random Lengths. I have that article somewhere in my files and I think to recall there's a pic as well. The seller probably made up the charging-$25-per-signature part to make that chap more valuable. Or he simply made it all up...

Flyer here.

I was there helping out, and no, he didn't charge for signing.

The whole charging for signatures thing seems to have started much later and mostly in the sports collectibles field. I haven't been to a book signing in some time, but those are usually done to promote a book, not to nickel-and-dime the people who turn out.
 
The sig looks fine to me, but given the pressed drawings on the cover, it's impossible to tell whether the signature is actually signed or a printing. Granted, the back cover indicates that the first 70 of 700 were signed, and this copy says it's number "nine." So, it's probably a real sig. I checked with Jeff Maser's listing on abebooks, and his listing has a copy for $250, with the accompanying text "although not called for, signed by Bukowski."

Now, I think Maser is a pretty good resource, but maybe he got this wrong. The back cover seems to clearly indicate that 70 were signed.
 

mjp

Founding member
Page 54: FANTASTIC PICTURE of our man Buk. Karsh of Ottawa, Bresson, Adams and Liebovitz can go fuck themselves. The portrait of the Bukster that Ring has here is a worldbeater. Oh man! the dignity, wisdom and sheer power come through, without any effort on Buk's part.
I think I bought that photo from Kevin a few years ago. Linda took the pic and signed it on the back. Unless I'm thinking of another pic, which is entirely possible. I don't have that issue of Beat Scene handy at the moment.

I was there helping out, and no, he didn't charge for signing.
Ah, Giant book store has been gone for some time, yeah? Only Williams' books is left in San Pedro. But Bukowski did sign books at a Vinegar Hill book store party in San Pedro as well. Though it wasn't a book signing per se, I think it was a birthday party thrown for him.

Anyway, the idea that he would charge for his signature is bizarre considering that he used to sign his books - without saying a word to the store owners - whenever he was in a San Pedro or Palos Verdes book store. So a lot of Bukowski readers got a special treat when they got those books home.
 
Well, one cigarpipeman seems to really want this. Current bid is $177.50 (who knows what he actually bid, but based on his 12 bids, he's nickel and dimed it up this far; or he actually bid $160 after a $30 bid).

Little does he know (???) that he could have a mint version for only $75 more. This copy, while interesting, is pretty beat. Personally, considering condition and rarity, I'd put the value at about $125 or so at most; or maybe all of my signed books are worth 200-300% of what I paid for them over the past four years...

Who wants to mess with him and bid $200?;)
 

chronic

old and in the way
Ah, Giant book store has been gone for some time, yeah? Only Williams' books is left in San Pedro. But Bukowski did sign books at a Vinegar Hill book store party in San Pedro as well. Though it wasn't a book signing per se, I think it was a birthday party thrown for him.

Yeah, the Giant closed not too long after the signing.

I heard about the Vinegar Hill birthday party after the fact, and you're right... the signing was sort of incidental.
 

1fsh2fsh

I think that I think too much
Founding member
He buys a lot of Bukowski stuff on eBay. I wonder if he walks among us?

this guy (cigarpipeman) has beaten me out on quite alot of stuff on e-bay. man, when he wants something he stops at no end to get it. now when I see he's bidding against me I usually just stop. I used to run up his bids on a few things but then got nervous that I might get stuck with something at an outrageous price. I believe he's in Japan.
 
M

MULLINAX

What a scumbag!
Bukowski did sign his books at a bookstore in 1986. A flyer was printed to promote the event, which was reviewed in one of the local papers, Random Lengths. I have that article somewhere in my files and I think to recall there's a pic as well. The seller probably made up the charging-$25-per-signature part to make that chap more valuable. Or he simply made it all up...
And remember folks: "it is a soft cover but is protected by a think piece of plastic".
The sig looks fine to me, but given the pressed drawings on the cover, it's impossible to tell whether the signature is actually signed or a printing. Granted, the back cover indicates that the first 70 of 700 were signed, and this copy says it's number "nine." So, it's probably a real sig. I checked with Jeff Maser's listing on abebooks, and his listing has a copy for $250, with the accompanying text "although not called for, signed by Bukowski."

Now, I think Maser is a pretty good resource, but maybe he got this wrong. The back cover seems to clearly indicate that 70 were signed.
Jeff Maser is an honest bookseller and the reason he includes the "not called for" line is to distinguish between the officially signed and numbered (with John Martin standing at Buk's elbow feeding him a sheet at a time and plying him with whiskey) books and the books that Buk would sign when someone thrust them into his face at a reading or at the racetrack or at some party.
 

hank solo

Just practicin' steps and keepin' outta the fights
Moderator
Founding member
MULLINAX said:
...the "not called for" line is to distinguish between the officially signed and numbered [...] books and the books that Buk would sign when someone thrust them into his face at a reading or at the racetrack or at some party.

Yes the "not called for" copies are signed outside of the limitation, usually at a later date.

With the BSP books, Bukowski would sign a box full of colophon or blank pages to be bound in to the books. Not sure how Marvin Malone ran his operation re the few limited copies he would put out. I expect he just sent the unfold covers to Bukowski.

So if you could only have one, which one would you want, the limited signed or the later signed?
 

mjp

Founding member
So if you could only have one, which one would you want, the limited signed or the later signed?
The later signed. You know, assuming I was the one who stuck it in front of his face to sign. ;)

But if the signature wasn't obtained personally, it doesn't really matter. The edition is obviously more easily authenticated, so I suppose that's the way to go.
 
M

MULLINAX

Abaa, Abe, Amazon, Alibris, B&n, Biblio...

That cigarpipeman dude has just been outbid for the Wormwood item by a certain "&%$#@"<*^%".

Will cigarpipeman take the bait?
 

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
It is now up to a painfully overpriced $370. Funny. The winning bidder could buy a mint copy for $100 less and the condition on this is sad. This is the auction mentality. Win at any cost and regardless of the actual value. I once saw someone pay $202.50 for a Bukowski CD that could be bought any day of the week for $40. He was set on winning it and did win it (If you can call paying $160 too much Winning).

Humans are funny....

Bill
 

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
He has now changed his listing about the $25 book signing fee (see below). If he bought this book from Red, he beat the shit out of it after he bought it. Red would never sell a book like this in this condition and especially for $25...

Bill



"After talking to my father i have found that most of the story i said before was pretty vague. My father many years ago loved to visit a book store called the Baroque book store. This book store was located in Hollywood not LA on Las Palmas St. the owner of the book store my father doesnt remember but he remembers his nickname which was Red but his real last name was Stodovsky. Stodovsky was my fathers friend because he use to visit his store alot Stodovsky was 80 years old so by now he has passed away. Stodovsky is also Charles Bukowski's very good personal friend also once every 2 to 3 months Charles Bukowski would only visit Stodovsky's book store and sign his books so Stodovsky would be able to sell them and be able to make a profit. my father and mother told me Charles Bukowski would never charge for him singing his books because thats the kind of person he was. My father purchased the book from Stodovski's book shop. Once my father happend to be in the shop and met Bukowski and signed some of my fathers books and also has a book signed personaly for my father. My father paid 25 bucks for his book not by Bukowski but he bought it from the store. My father donated the book to me to help me pay for some of my baby's supplies. This is the only book he donated to me so i dont believe he will give up his other books. If any questions arrive please messege me. "
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
On signed Wormwoods: I had two or three issues that I signed as author. The way it worked for me was that Marvin Malone would mail me the complete issues (not unbound sheets) and I'd sign them all and return half to him, keeping (at his suggestion) the lowest numbered copies (#1 through 35 or whatever). The limitation number was written out as a word in the first twenty or so copies ("one", "two", "three", etc.) and as a number for the rest ("21", "22" etc.) He was very specific about where to sign it, and for the center sections, it was on the first page of the center section (not elsewhere in the issue) and on the one issue where I had the entire thing to myself, I think it was on the limitation page in the back. I'm going by memory here -- it's been a while since I looked at these, so I could be wrong about that last thing. Just thought someone might be interested in these details of how Malone operated. I always felt hugely honored and not worthy when I had one of these issues, and still do.
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
On signed Wormwoods... and on the one issue where I had the entire thing to myself, I think it was on the limitation page in the back...

I'm not sure about that at all. I may have signed it on the inside front cover. I need to dig out my copy and see.

Glad the details are of interest. I should add that Marvin Malone (editor of The Wormwood Review) was very friendly and supportive in his notes and letters to me (always written in red felt tip pen) but didn't give out much personal information. He played it close to the vest. I never felt like I really knew him, except as an editor. What I did know, I liked.
 

Rekrab

Usually wrong.
Okay, I looked at my copies of Wormwood and here are the facts (so much for memory). Issue Number 75, I have the complete issue, signed 40 copies on the inside front cover. Issue 84, I have a special center section, also signed on the inside front cover. Issue 94, another special center section, signed this time on the first page of the center section.

Going through my Wormwoods (I have a lot of issues, including probably all of the Bukowski specials, but not a full run), it's interesting to see how the number of author signed copies increased over time, probably as the number of collectors seeking them grew. Some of the earliest issues don't even mention signed copies in the limitation statement. I don't have any signed Bukowski copies, so I can't say where in the various issued he signed them.
 
M

MULLINAX

It's up for auction again, the very same copy. Seems like the winner reneged on paying up.
 

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
Not accusing anyone of anything here (We have seen what happens when I get too specific), but sometimes an item is relisted like this for a couple different reasons:

1) The bidder did not pay up and the seller got tired of waiting (usually the seller will wait more than a couple days to relist it)
2) The winning bidder bid high to mess with the seller and then told them that they were not buying it. (This would make sense if the bidder had a grudge against the seller)
3) The winning bid was a shill, meant to either drive up the price or protect the investment. When the winner is the shill for the seller, there is nothing to do but relist it. It also helps that the very same people just saw it sell for $370 and now assume that it is actually worth anywhere near that price and often will be happy that they were able to take it for a mere $300 (when in fact, it is worth about $50).

Of course, if you ask me, I say that the seller is 100% above board. What else would I say?

Bill
 

chronic

old and in the way
Bukowski did sign his books at a bookstore in 1986. A flyer was printed to promote the event, which was reviewed in one of the local papers, Random Lengths. I have that article somewhere in my files and I think to recall there's a pic as well.

Hey Abel. If this has a photo from the signing, do you have a copy that you could scan and email to me? I think I might be in the picture (I was sitting just behind and to the left of Bukowski during much of the signing).
 

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