RE: RARA-AVIS: Lawrence Block rants about signature-hungry book c ollectors...: Ty

From: Todd Mason (
Date: 28 Apr 2004

From: Andrew Albert J. Ty

I found lines like "Unless you count Saint Paul, book tours are a recent phenomenon" quite delightful, and Block's comments about mercenary collectors quite on the money. Still, he does sound a bit harsh here, and personally, I like my books signed and with my name on it. In any case:

---Thanks, Andrew. This helps explain further the tenor of the one time I met Block, when he came into the bookstore I was working in a decade ago, and grimly went about the business of signing the copies we had of the then new novel.

Not that, even with limited experience with signings outside my store
(BoucherCons feel pretty much like SF conventions feel pretty much like Free Library festivals), I didn't understand beforehand. Even I, with my first published short story (also a decade ago), was approached by someone who went out of his way to be obsequious in asking for a signature, only to drop the magazine somewhere in the store (perhaps after reading the story) without buying it. Multiply that by several thousand annually, and add the even more enervating dealers with their stacks of copies, and I think he's actually pretty temperate here...

TM, who never asks for signatures these days, unless the author/editor asks if I'd like one first.

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