Lost Continent Books

Mapping the Terrain of Used and Rare Books

The Signed Book Binnacle, pt. 1: An Introduction

I don’t know what to do.

These are signed books:



As are these:


And these:


They all somehow exist, and I happen to own them. All in the in excess of my personal collection of signed books, which I will not even get into right now. All of the above books need to get out of here. They need to be for sale – and  more importantly someone needs to buy them.

It goes something like this: (An example):

"Annie Pitts, Burger Kid," by Diane deGroat; (SeaStar books, 2000.) Signed by author.

“Annie Pitts, Burger Kid,” by Diane deGroat; (SeaStar books, 2000.)
Signed by author.

Annie Pits: Burger Kid” is worth about a penny. But lets pretend someone wants a copy (please keep in mind that I don’t understand said person, or ever care to know anything about them, or even want to admit that said person actually exists) and the copy, again, is worth one cent.

They see a signed copy available for five dollars.

They say “Hmmmmm…. Five dollars ain’t that much….. Since I want “Annie Pits: Burger Kid” so badly I might as well dish-out the five for the signed copy…..”

It’s the only signed copy available. And it’s cheap enough. So they buy it.

Ideally the signature turns a totally worthless book into something worth more than, at least, a dollar, because, well, it’s signed.

The one person in  the world who wants said book, no matter what bullshit it really is, can have the rarest copy available anywhere for just a few dollars.

That’s my argument for cheap signed books.

My counter argument is the fact that I Love/ Hate shitty signed books just like I do drugs and alcohol. They are all interesting and unique and also money-draining and worthless. It took me a long time to realize this about signed self-published novels and also whisky and pills.

But just like drugs and alcohol I’ve learned to control the signed books. I did not buy, at Goodwill today, a signed copy of “The Great Gospel Celebrations of Celibacy,” by Rev. Robert Goodberg Klien. It may have looked neat, at a a glance, but I realized it was just not worth my time or health or sanity. Just like a cheap twelve-pack of malt-liquor is not.

All that aside, I have a huge pile of signed books. And while many of them are cheap and embarrassing, many are not – they are just obscure. And worth, to the right person, a hell of a lot more money than Annie Pits.

So I’m going to start to go through these things and try to figure out just what, exactly, is going on. I’m a bit confused. I will post on it soon.






About jansonbriggs

Book collectoe/ dealer, aspiring author, have had poems published in a few small magazines.... I like cats and quiet. I like airplane lift-offs and the new-renewal of wandering (wondering?) around somewhere new. I like solitude. I miss people. Bob Dylan. Running water; still water - I like water. A good sence of humor. Again: A good sense of humor. That's what keeps us sane and human and Kind.

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