Monday, 2 February 2009

Signed copies and such. On being a fan boy.

I've discussed The Book of Lost Things before and basically how I think it's absolutely AWESOME and when I grow up that's the sort of book I want write. Actually, The Dark Goddess IS very heavily influenced by BOLT (weird how that's worked).
Anyway, I mentioned this to a friend who just happend to know the author, John Connolly, and, lo and behold, a signed hardback turns up!
Wow. It's right here in front of me.
But what's the talismanic property a thing acquires (usually a book or photo) when someone's scribbled their name on it? It got me thinking that President Kennedy's autograph is worth a hell of a lot, but not as much as Lee Harvey Oswald's.
It's the oblique connection with one's hero I suppose. I went to a Darren Shan event and there were kids turning up with their ENTIRE collection, which he very dutifully signed. Great event (especially as he got a few kids to act out a chapter, and he read from his WIP, and he took loads of questions, and answered them pretty honestly). THEN I'd been to a Stephen King event and he would only sign his latest book, which was a shame because I didn't have it. I don't know how much of that was a policy of the organisers (I like to think King wouldn't care) but it seriously pissed off a lot of people. The King talk was an interesting event. There were a good few thousand of us, each having paid £15 to see him. BUT there were no questions from the audience (the questions were all previously submitted) and as he was talking, people started shuffling across the hall towards where the queue would be, the rattle of chairs moving and people hustling past you meant I deidn't catch the last 5 minutes of his talk. A shambles from start to finish, especially as it was his first trip over here in 15 years or something. You might as well have seen the entire thing on Youtube, there was no audience involvement at all.
Oh, hit my January target on writing. What's more exceeded it by a large margin. Fingers crossed and TDG will be done by the end of this month. The end's in sight and it's going to be violent. No, really violent. This is my Thermopylae. But without the leather thongs.
Plus it snowed today. A lot. Most of the street decided to take the day off and we had a chaotic snow ball fight where I used a small child as a human shield. I'm not proud of it but with five year olds, they're light enough to carry but still offer significant coverage, at least the upper torso.


johnandsue said...

I have never collected an autograph. In fact i ordered a falconry book mail order and requested it not signed but the authour scribbled in it anyway! I never understood all that stuff but you can send me a signed copy of TDK if you want darling. (Could be valuable one day like the early draft I keep in a safe under my desk. Even you have forgotten it was once called 'Templar's Requiem')

I hope the five year old did not take too much colateral damage. (he he)
adious J.

SarwatC said...

Dear John and Sue,
I still prefer Templar's Requiem as a title.
I'll probably FORCE you to have a signed copy and insist you keep it on your mantle-piece.
Oh, by the way, I've lost your email address.

Jon M said...

I've become a bit of a signed book fiend! Shan is a true gent and signed ALL my son's books when we went to see him (well all the one's written by him, signing someone else's book does constitute scribbling, I reckon). Children do make great cover in snowball fights. Sadly as they grow bigger and ugler, they turn against you and start throwing their own!

Tracy said...

Hey, fanboy - have you heard the Christian bale rant doing the rounds?!

I'll have a signed copy of Devil's Kiss too, please.

SarwatC said...

Re: Christian Bale rant.
Wow, just heard it. After about a minute it went quiet and I thought, "so, the guy lost it, it happens" then he went on and on and on. Painful.
Just hope all The Dark Knight success hasn't gone to his head. Let that be a lesson to us all. Anyway, must log-off, the manicurist has just arrived. Where's the f***ing butler? Does he think I open the f***ing front door myself?

Gareth said...

Hey - don't do any more snowballing after the manicure - murder on the French Polish... suggest catapulting out small child instead.

Sadly, the few non-signed copies of Jason Willow will be the ones to get hold of if I ever make it big!

johnandsue said...


Stevyn Colgan said...

I've never been an autograph hound per se but I do treasure certain books signed by personal heroes of mine like Stephen Fry, David Attenborough, Tony Hawks, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall etc. But my most prized signed books are my William Rushton's 'Pigsticking', my Kenneth Williams' 'Acid drops' and my 'HHGTTG' signed by Douglas Adams. Of course, I will be looking to add a Sarwat Chadda to that list in due course!