Howdy. (2 Viewers)

hm, when he introduced himself, I liked the fact, that he didn't tell pages and pages about his whole life in the very first post.
It was a clean, pure style.
But since then, he's gotten really quiet. Maybe even a little bit too quiet for a forum.
 
Hello! I apologize for introducing myself and then taking absence. You all are such a friendly lot, thank you to everyone for welcoming me! The wind does blow quite freely in Oklahoma. It can be beautiful. To answer your question, Black Swan, here is a list of the Buks I've read so far:

Post Office
Women
Ham On Rye
Hot Water Music
The Most Beautiful Woman In Town
Tales of Ordinary Madness
Portions From a Wine Stained Notebook
Flash of Lightning Behind the Mountain
Slouching Toward Nirvana
Come On In
The People Look Like Flowers at Last
The Night Torn Mad With Footsteps
The Last Night of the Earth Poems
Sifting Through The Madness For...
Pleasures of the Damned
Run With The Hunted

I'm looking forward to reading Factotum. A while back a friend of mine gifted me with what I believe might be a first or early edition of Post Office and I've been meaning to post a question here about it to find out. I look forward to joining in some good discussion here.
 

chronic

old and in the way
A while back a friend of mine gifted me with what I believe might be a first or early edition of Post Office and I've been meaning to post a question here about it to find out.

What do you need to know? Is it published by Black Sparrow or is it one of the editions issued in the UK? You can look here (about the tenth title from the top) and see if any of these match your copy.
 
Thank you, Chronic. Mine is issued by Black Sparrow, although it doesn't look like any on collectingbukowski. I believe it's an ex-library copy if that matters. There's no dust jacket. Just a hardcover in a turquoise color with a blue pattern across it. The binding just says "POST OFFICE" in white lettering. The title page is in color, with the blue and red border, red lettering, and a logo which says "Black Sparow Press Los Angeles 1971." The opposite page is a list of other works by Bukowski which includes Flower, Fist and Bestial Wail, It Catches My Heart In Its Hands, Terror Street, Fire Station, etc. The second to last page says "Printed January 1971 in Santa Barbara by Noel Young for the Black Sparrow Press. Design by Barbara Martin. This edition is limited to 2000 copies in paper wrappers; 250 hardcover copies numbered an signed by the author; and 50 numbered copies handbound in boards by Earle Gray, signed and with an original illustration by the author."

Any idea what edition this could be? I may be able to take pictures of the book and some pages.
 

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
It is a rebound library copy, most likely. Almost certainly first edition. If there is no number on the colophon, then it was originally a paperback. If there is a number on the colophon, then there should also be a signature. If so, then it was a hardback (there was sadly no HB trade first of this title).

I suspect that it was a first edition paperback that was in circulation and became do damaged that they rebound it in hard covers.

Please post a photo or two when you can. Many of us are interested to see it, I'm sure,


Best,
Bill

p.s. If there was no colophon, I would guess that someone removed the colophon (stole it) and the library was then faced with a book that may have needed to be rebound. As long as your colophon is on the same kind of paper and looks like it was always part of the book, then I am pretty comfortable saying that it is a rebound paperback first.
 

mjp

Founding member
Well, there are two certainties in your case:

Color title page = first edition.
Library binding = zero collector value.

Ex-library is like Kryptonite to people who pay good money for books. It's a good way to get your hands on books that would otherwise be out of your price range though.
 

bospress.net

www.bospress.net
Yes, value wise, if it is reboud, its value is as a reading copy. No more valuable monetarily than a later printing. This usually applies to almost all ex-library copies.

There are those that collect them, but they are smart enough to know the value and not overpay.

Still, it is probably interesting and, of course, the book is excellent!

Bill
 
Thank you mjp and Bill. I appreciate you taking the time to educate. I'm glad to know why my copy of Post Office seems so weird. I'll be sure to take pictures of the book and post them on here when I get the chance to.
 
Welcome Sven! Good to see a new member who is truly interested in both the word and the history of how Buk's words came to be put into print, as both of these concepts have a great deal of history. There are a number of good folks here like mjp and Bill who can provide more than enough info to make your head spin. But it feels good when that happens.
 
Sven, I think you're going to like Factotum. It was the first Buk novel I read and I enjoyed it quite a bit. Especially since I had a bit in common with Buk in that book. I have worked a string of blue collar jobs. Though none of them ended like he ended his. And I don't drink. But it's a great book!
 
I'm back, baby, to follow up on this post with the pictures promised years ago. This seems to be a first edition paperback of Post Office, rebound as a hardback for library use. Hope all of you are well, the last few years have been strange.

image.jpgimage.jpg
image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg
 
Hey Sven: It's certainly rare for someone to disappear for 4 1/2 years and reappear to follow up with photos. As suggested in earlier posts, what you have is a well-worn wraps/library 1st edition that has been bound in boards by someone at some point. There is little monetary value in this copy, but the true value of Buk's books is in the words. You can't put a price on them.
 

mjp

Founding member
Yes, there weren't first edition trade (unsigned) hardcovers until Burning in Water three years later. Which leads me to wonder when the first hardcover trades of Post Office were made...
 
Thank you mjp and Bill. I appreciate you taking the time to educate. I'm glad to know why my copy of Post Office seems so weird. I'll be sure to take pictures of the book and post them on here when I get the chance to.
I personally love reading copies of first editions. Your book to me is very cool. The four year absence is also a bit Kauffmanesque. Either that or your house is real fucking big.
 
Thanks, all. I realize the book has no monetary value, but it has great character. It has always been my intention and desire to be active on this forum. In 2011 I has a liver transplant; then enrolled in university. Currently I'm working with the head of English dept on feedback for my writing. (Who isn't a poet?) I recently visited Big Buk again and came across the book, had the thought, took the pictures.
 

mjp

Founding member
Thanks, all. I realize the book has no monetary value, but it has great character.
Monetary value is always secondary. Or at least it should be.

The reason it's discussed so frequently around here is because a large percentage of Bukowski readers/lovers are also collectors. I think you can blame P.T. Barnum John Martin for at least part of that. I don't know if the Bukowski "market" would be as vast and varied without all of the Black Sparrow special editions (if you can call something like a book with different colored cloth on the spine and a letter written in it instead of a number "special").
 

mjp

Founding member
The prices might be higher, but if you had a signed first edition you'd have something relatively uncommon, interesting and valuable. As it is, signed Bukowski firsts are very common. They still hold a value, but that value is obviously diminished since several thousand "official" signed firsts were produced.

Also, I really believe that if the firsts (and all the "special" "limited" stuff) weren't so gimmicky there wouldn't be as many Bukowski collectors. Collecting his books would be a lot more boring than it is. By producing all those different editions around the first edition, Martin created sets, and there are always people who want - or need - to complete the set they bought in to.

Bottom line is it was Martin's job to sell books, which he did. And he did it in a very punk rock way - which means doing it the he wanted to do it because he didn't necessarily know how to (or wasn't able to) do it the traditional, "right" way. So I have to admire that.

But in the long run, creating a big secondary market (which we all live in now) doesn't really benefit the publisher or the writer.
 
It's funny, because an uncalled for signature, all things considered, should be more valuable. Buk actually
holding the item should add a bit of value, though this doesn't seem to be the case, except for items
without signature limitations, obviously.
 

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