Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Nancy Drew 1st Printing Auctions Part 2

The second round of early first printing Nancy Drew auctions began when a seller listed the 1930A-1 Old Clock and 1930A-1 Hidden Staircase books with intact first printing dust jackets.

Nancy Drew Old Clock 1930A-1 with dust jacket

This book closed at $7,257.98.

Nancy Drew Hidden Staircase 1930A-1 with dust jacket

This book closed at $6,233.00.

These auctions were interesting, because the seller did not know what she had. Before I continue, you should read Jennifer Fisher's blog post, "A Tale of Two 1st Printing Nancy Drew Books Part 1" if you have not already done so. Jenn summarizes quite nicely the usual sequence of events that I will confess to me is a "major irritant."

I freaked when I became aware of these auctions for several reasons. I wanted them badly, knew that I did not have much of a chance, and knew the seller had created a situation inadvertently that would cause some people not to be aware of the auctions. I also knew that a few people would try hard to get the auctions closed early, and others would advertise the auctions to the entire world.

I immediately contacted the seller with the following message.
You will have people try to get you to close these auctions early. The big bids will not come in until the final ten seconds of the auction. You would be well advised not to accept any private offers for these books. Those people will be trying to get the books for a bargain, at your expense. You are better off letting the auctions run to completion.
The seller understood and acted accordingly. Hey guys, that's all you need to tell these sellers. Whenever I send this type of message, they get the point. They don't need to be told some huge value that the book will likely not reach and then be bitterly disappointed that they didn't get $10,000 or more.

The seller had already received offers and received additional offers throughout the auctions. I was unable to win the auctions, but I tried. We did learn from the winning bidder that the seller had been given the books by a friend who was dying. The friend told the seller to take a nice vacation with the money. The seller had no idea of the books' value, but apparently the original owner did.

It should be noted that Old Clock fell quite a bit short of the $11,700 auction close of a couple years ago. The vast majority of collectors do not value the first printing dust jacket at $10,000 or more. And because nearly all collectors do not feel that the dust jacket is worth that much, or perhaps are simply unwilling or unable to pay that much, it is quite disturbing that people contact all of these sellers and tell them that their books are worth $10,000 or more. Even when the book is in horrible shape, people tell the seller that the book is hugely valuable! More on this in my next post.


Brandi said...

I feel very offended. Quite obviously, the post about 'helpful sellers' and telling them an outrageous amount could be expected was solely intended at me. I couldn't help but to wonder if this was some little lady who's husband had passed, or something like that and she was forced to sell off her childhood books to cushion her living. I told her about the past book because I did not want her to fall victim to a wise bookdealer and get taken advantage of, when quite possibly, she needed the money. I also did not intend for her to post the message for everyone to see. I suppose my 'major irritant' is people who take advantage of people. There is no one RIGHT way to do things.

The helpful buyer,

Jennifer White said...

"Solely intended at me" - hardly. I understand why you feel that way, but you haven't read my next post on the more recent auctions which has not yet published.

Brandi, my comments are aimed at ALL of the people over the years who have contacted sellers and GUSHED over the books. I know you were trying to be helpful and meant no harm. You had no way of knowing that quite a few people had already contacted the seller.

What you need to do is consider how you would feel if you were wanting to buy a book for, say $500, and people contacted the seller telling the seller that the book was worth thousands. How would you feel?

Jennifer White said...

You would have no idea how hard I try not to offend people in this blog. I am having the most horrific week. I had somebody get angry at me last night because I dared to be annoyed that I was plagiarized in Wikipedia. I was called "Ms. Cynical" in a snide fashion.

Today, I had somebody file a claim against me because they haven't received their purchase from two weeks ago. They did NOT bother to contact me first.

Maybe I should just go crawl under a rock for a couple of months. Would that make everyone happy?

Brandi said...

I mean no harm or bad feelings to ANYONE. I understand that feeling. There are a great many books that I would like to buy for good prices too. Some people want to buy them, to have them, because they cherish them, but most likely, people with big pockets want to buy them to resell them. I wanted to let them know that they had a desirable book in their possession. I didn't contact them to tell them to cancel the auction and sell it at $10,000, I just didn't want them to sell it for 1/2 the value to someone who possibly wanted it for the purpose of resale for a BIN of a less then worthy price. She didn't even have it listed correctly... that was my main intent on contacting her. Some people are doing all they can to make ends meet. I simply wanted to let this person know that they should not accept $3000 or $5000, which with no doubt they would have thought that that was a great amount, but not for what they had to sell. If my other messages to the seller were posted as well, you would see that I told them that due to the economy and such, they probably couldn't expect such prices for their books but to simply not sell it without the auction ending. I had no ulterior motive, I assure you, because I don't have the money to spare to buy it anyway. After directly speaking to the seller, through quite a few messages, I may add, what I was told was nothing like what was stated... I was told a COMPLETELY different story. All my good intentions were for nothing, and just ticked people off at me when all I was trying to do was help what I thought may have been someone who truly needed it. I just don't think I'm thick skinned enough to deal with the world of books... I'm one of those people who think... what if that were my grandma...


stratomiker said...

No matter what you do, if you are well-known and vocal in the collecting field, you're going to get it. Others will be extremely jealous of you. They will harass, spread rumors and untruths, and do whatever they can to get everyone else against you.

I started Judy Bolton Day weekend 19 years ago. I didn't even go to it this past weekend, even though I was only an hour and a half away vacationing in New York state. There has been so much drama by certain others trying/succeeding in taking over the event/the promotion of the series, etc., and much of it directed at me. Why? They simply wanted me out of there, so they could be what they think of as The Big Cheese.

You know what? I had a great time at the lake in NY. Who needs Judy and PA if that much drama has to go with it?

I got the first two and last two Judys published in the 1990s, set up the 'heir' with the publisher to get the whole series reprinted in those nice new editions with copy I wrote on them, and I get publicly chastised and accused in front of others for 'exploiting' Margaret Sutton.

Duh.....? It seems other collecting fields are the same. There are always those who are jealous of the ones who have done something and ready and willing to let them have it.

You are the prime voice right now in series book collecting. Other blogs and chat groups don't allow 'truths' or 'opinions' or reporting or chat on controversial topics. They try to walk a fine line so as not to aggravate anyone and stay well-liked. If you do voice an opinion or actually tell the truth about something, as you do, you'll get blasted.

But, keep it up. There are some of us who enjoy the truth.


Jennifer White said...

Nobody is in the wrong here. I have my point of view, and Brandi has hers. As I have told her, we both had the same intentions.

I am tempted to delete part of my next post, but you know what? I'll leave it. The person who contacted the other seller about the other first printing Old Clock dust jacket will get angry with me, but I do have the right to my opinion.

This is what happened last night. Someone asked a question in one of the groups about a Wikipedia entry. The entry had no source and surprise, surprise, the source was me with no credit given. It's not that I need credit; it's that nobody knew the validity of the information. If the source had been given, the person asking about the validity could have gone to the source material, this blog, and decided for himself.

So I went off on how people keep plagiarizing me on Wikipedia and how they need to cite their sources. So someone responds in what seems to me to be a flippant fashion stating that I should not wrong the person for trying to help spread the information. I grew angry, not knowing that this person was the one who had done it.

I really went off on why this bothers me, and then this other person calls me "Ms. Cynical" and tells me that stuff isn't usually sourced in Wikipedia and other stuff. He then sent several more messages taunting me.

I responded by stating that our page on Wikipedia has been flagged for two years for not having sources and that we are the exception and not the rule. After that, he seemed to calm down and corrected the page.

I informed him that my strong response was not aimed specifically at what he had done. Someone else had copied and pasted something I wrote in the past, and someone had asked for clarification a few weeks ago. If people are coming from Wikipedia to our group multiple times because of confusion, the source (me) needs to be listed in Wikipedia. I am the one who had to clarify the meaning since it got messed up in the copying and pasting.

I reacted very strongly last night because of how often I have been plagiarized by dozens, perhaps hundreds of people, on their websites, on Wikipedia, and in eBay auctions.

You wonder why I tell this story? It's a similar situation tonight. Brandi got upset because she thought I meant her specifically. My comments are about all of the people over the last ten years who contact sellers in a similar fashion. In two cases, my comments aimed at multiple people were thought to be intended just for one.

Then to top it all off, a buyer filed a claim against me this morning. She has reason to be upset because she has not received her package from September 28. So much for my recent post on speedy media mail.

The package was going from Oklahoma City to Little Rock, Arkansas and should have arrived within four days at the most. The package went through the Dallas sorting facility as all of my packages do and then went to Maryland (!). After spending a day or so in Maryland, the package went to Memphis. The package left Memphis this morning, hopefully on Interstate 40 towards Little Rock. If all goes well, the package will arrive within the next day or so.

What irks me is that the buyer did not contact me before filing a claim.

Jennifer White said...

Mike mentioned harassment. He is right. In the other area of interest referenced in my above post, I actually have a stalker of sorts. It is best that I not give any public details, although I have told some of you privately a bit about it. I had to quit collecting certain stuff in order to escape from a very toxic situation.

Brandi said...

For the record, I think Jennifer is an honest, ethical buyer and seller... I posted without thinking because as far as I know, my email to the seller was the only one I knew of. My outburst came only because I thought that I was being chastised because I thought that I was trying to help. I love book collecting, and while I don't participate in the bidding of exteremly valuable books, I still don't want to see someone get taken advantage of. I love opinions, lol... because I tend to be opinionated myself. :) I don't even look at Wikipedia because I go Jennifer's page, where I'm pretty sure the information is acurate, so I have nothing to say about that.

I do apologize, sincerly, for typing and not asking first.


Jennifer White said...

I should also make sure everyone knows that the Wikipedia page has nothing to do with series books. I don't need anyone else getting upset. Ha :) The last time I looked at any of the series book pages on Wikipedia, information seemed to be cited correctly with the sources. As long as the information has the sources, I am fine with it.

Jenn Fisher said...


I will second Jennifer's 2nd comment here--that was most definitely not intended at you only, this has gone on for years at eBay and behind the scenes. I wasn't complaining that you were being helpful nor was Jennifer, it's just hat sometimes the sale doesn't match the 10,000 and some sellers might be very disappointed when a figure is thrown out that isn't realized. There are also some sellers or types of people (obviously not this seller here), who would then drive up the bidding shill wise or crony wise to realize such a price or for "insurance." It's happened before. So a lot of collectors talk about this behind the scenes. Some find it to be a minor irritant, some a major. Some it's not a big deal.


stratomiker said...

"Mike mentioned harassment. He is right. In the other area of interest referenced in my above post, I actually have a stalker of sorts"

*** I've had online and offline stalkers, people who have threatened to come to town and 'get me', accusations of exploiting authors (by family members), rumors spread (especially about sex and sexual orientation), and any number of other inanities by those who were jealous of me or didn't get what they wanted from me.

There were two characters I had to write to and tell they were not welcome in Coudersport anymore because they had insulted our hosts there in their home, and those people aked me to make sure they didn't come back. My request for them not to join us again was turned into 'I threatened to kill them' and told to everyone around at that time.

These things happen in any group eventually - just look at the TV ads for the politicians - even book collecting gets political when you get deeply involved in it and with its participants. Things can get ugly.

It is very brave to have a blog like this where you speak your mind and bring up these topics. There will be backlash, however.

I tend to blog in a more satirical way, making fun of it all, trying to find the humor. But I recently stopped that because too many people were getting a little too vicious.

I was a leader in series book collecting since the 1970s, always had the best of the books to sell and trade, wrote my own fanfiction for many series, and my own original characters books, and made so many enemies of people who were jealous, hateful, or didn't get me in bed or fixed up with some 'lonely' one.

How silly it can all be!


beautifulshell said...

I think the internet makes it 100% easier for people to bring the crazy than it is in real life, too. It's so easy to be mean and jump to conclusions when you're interacting somewhat anonymously and can't read tone. I used to be much more active on blogs and messageboards, and it's just not worth the emotional crap that comes with it (to me).

That said, I love your blog and hope you keep posting about books because it's really interesting for those of us who don't want to get involved in the book collecting world elsewhere.

Jennifer White said...

People can be really vicious online. I made the mistake of complaining about a seller on the eBay message boards around four years ago. The issue was that the books were badly water damaged. I was told that I should have asked whether the books were water damaged. Sorry, but sellers should disclose flaws like that. The people who frequent the eBay message boards blame the buyer when the seller fails to disclose information that should be disclosed. It's interesting how they think.

It appears that my buyer in Little Rock finally received her package a few hours ago. It took 18 days from Oklahoma City to Little Rock! It has been years since a package I mailed took that long to arrive, and even crazier, it was going to the next state!

Jennifer White said...

People think that the information on Wikipedia is more correct than information mentioned elsewhere. That is what I have discovered. I keep having people tell me I'm wrong about something because of what Wikipedia says. They think Wikipedia is the official source. The information there came through me, but it is old information, which is why I stated it is not necessarily what will happen. I am then told that it will happen because of what Wikipedia says. Argh!

I am having circular discussions with people in the comments section of my Zorro blog. I will be glad when the DVDs get released, because this is getting to be trying. I had to vent somewhere, and since I already mentioned Wikipedia, this was the place to do it.