Value of autograph?
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Post Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 6:22 am 
 

Sorry if this has been covered before,
but just out of interest, is there a premium to be paid for an autographed piece of D&D.
I only ask, because I've had a bit of post (suggesting there is!) since mentioning I have a Gygax signed PHB.  I've up to now assumed that signed pieces would be common, but actually haven't seen many up for auction.
The piece I have is a reasonable condition 9th PHB with inscription on front page "With All Wishes For Great Gaming... Gary Gygax GamesFair 1986".  I had assumed up to now that it may fetch a few extra quid, but not be worth putting out there as I quite like it - after all, it brings back memories as a spotty 15 year old youth of standing in front of this GOD shuffling uneasily as I hoped I wouldn't say something too stupid :oops:  :oops:  :oops: .
This is the only autograph I had asked for up until this point, and to be honest put me off ever asking again!

  

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Post Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 7:30 am 
 

I can only speak for myself, but I don't particularly care for autographs.


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Post Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 8:12 am 
 

I would imagine the value of autographed items will be highly subjective. Some people might pay the extra money for an autograph, but I know a lot of collectors who won't want an item that's been marked up regardless of who did it.

I think the only autographed items I have are a 8th print Basic rulebook and a copy of B2 signed by Erol Otus. These were a gift, so I have no idea how much they cost.

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Post Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 8:37 am 
 

My experience suggests you may get a small amount more for the item, but not much.

As previously mentioned, some folks won't bid....but others may bid more than normal for the autograph.  Unique items like the Jiardini signed 1st PHB sold clearly are exceptions.  I seem to recall an OCE that was signed that went for a bit more than average recently too.

  


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Post Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 8:38 am 
 

It really depends.  Some people are most certainly willing to pay more for an autograph and some folks as DL said could care less.  The problem with autographs, particularly on Ebay is the authenticity of the autograph.  Realistically (not saying you would do this Jon  :wink: ) any schmuck on EBay could sign all of his books with the authors name and 99% of the people would not have any way of knowing if it is real or not.  That being said that basically elimintates any possibility of a substantial price increase.  The thing that makes strombers auction do so well is the fact that people do know that what he is selling is legitimately form the person in question and it can verified that it is being sold on his behalf.  JUst my .02. :)


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Post Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 10:08 am 
 

I guess that the autograph market is quite DIFFERENT from the old RPG one. Well, sometimes they mix - as in your case - and some (like myself) would be tempted to buy something signed by a well-known author out of curiosity - or compulsive shopping disorder  :D
As usually, the value of an autographed item - or better, any item - is as high as the buyer is expected to shell out  :wink: and of how much he needs it.


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Post Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 10:17 am 
 

Mr. Gygax is coming to a convention in Toronto in August, and I'm going to try to get an autograph.  However, I'm not going to bring anything rare/valuable for him to sign, as autographs by definition lower an item's condition.  (You're purposefully writing on the thing!)

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Post Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 11:28 am 
 

Depends. The autographed Tamoachan that I sold to one of the nicest collectors on the board is definitely worth more to the majority of people, I am sure. Tough to get 2 authors to sign an item.
As long as the item comes from a reputable source, I have never questioned authenticity of signatures. I just don't have any personal interest. If I had the opportunity to have Gygax autograph my 1st print woody, I'd probably do it. I would, however, ask for a generic signature, without my name in it. Personalized autographs ruin the value, except to the owner.


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Post Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 10:35 pm 
 

Deadlord36 wrote:Depends. The autographed Tamoachan that I sold to one of the nicest collectors on the board is definitely worth more to the majority of people, I am sure. Tough to get 2 authors to sign an item.


Too true.  Rarity of the autograph is also a big factor:  sad to say, but I'm sure that all of the autographed items from DCSIII just went up in value, since you can't just dig him up for a copy anymore :(

I would, however, ask for a generic signature, without my name in it. Personalized autographs ruin the value, except to the owner.


Just to play devil's advocate, the PHB that was inscribed to Steve Marsh by Gary ("first one ever sold" or whatever the exact inscription was) is much more valuable because of that non-genericness.  My DMG autographed by EGG at Origins '90 is certainly not in the same league, so Frank's point is certainly valid in general, I just think that some items have their value increased markely based on the autographs/inscriptions within them.  (Another example:  the copy of Andre Norton's Quag Keep that was sold not that long ago).


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Post Posted: Mon Jun 13, 2005 2:11 am 
 

grodog wrote:
Deadlord36 wrote:Depends. The autographed Tamoachan that I sold to one of the nicest collectors on the board is definitely worth more to the majority of people, I am sure. Tough to get 2 authors to sign an item.


Too true. Rarity of the autograph is also a big factor: sad to say, but I'm sure that all of the autographed items from DCSIII just went up in value, since you can't just dig him up for a copy anymore :(

I would, however, ask for a generic signature, without my name in it. Personalized autographs ruin the value, except to the owner.


Just to play devil's advocate, the PHB that was inscribed to Steve Marsh by Gary ("first one ever sold" or whatever the exact inscription was) is much more valuable because of that non-genericness. My DMG autographed by EGG at Origins '90 is certainly not in the same league, so Frank's point is certainly valid in general, I just think that some items have their value increased markely based on the autographs/inscriptions within them. (Another example: the copy of Andre Norton's Quag Keep that was sold not that long ago).


    Also, Gary's autograph...well, it's not that great looking.  :D I have a few EGG autographed items (some modules, OCE set and Gord novels) and every autograph looks like it could be duplicated extremely easily...EGG's signature just isn't really that distinctive. I would say the value is subjective in that there may that ONE collector out there that really, really would pay more for an autograph, but most might not care.  
    I think the old adage that "autographs bring down the value because you are writing on the item" is subjective also.  I'll always remember a copy of Fantastic Four #1 that came up for auction at a large comic book convention I went to about 15 years ago.  It was in average shape but had been signed by both Stan Lee AND Jack Kirby. Some pundits in the audience were scoffing before the auction began that because of the signature the book should be worth LESS than even a poor copy, because signatures are a form of writing and in theory the book had been written on. Of course, the copy went for one of the highest prices ever paid for a FF #1 in ANY condition (up until then), proving that if at least two people want an item really badly enough it doesn't really matter what anyone else thinks!  :D

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Post Posted: Wed Jun 15, 2005 1:54 pm 
 

Personally, I love to collect autographed items. This is obviously not shared with too many people who collect. Heck, even my ubberboss doesn't like autographed books, and he's been in the used book business for a couple of decades.

Autographs on anything vary. There are people who think such things add value to an item. Others think that it devalue's the item's value.

Me... I would love to have a nice set of AD&D harback's signed by Gygax.

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Post Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2005 7:17 pm 
 

I had EGG sign a copy of The Temple of Elemental Evil.  I'm sure that'll lower the value of it somewhat (it was a personalized inscription), but that particular module means a lot to me and it won't be sold.

Heh.  I also have a copy of FASA's Star Trek RPG that was autographed by James Doohan.  That's another one that won't be sold.  :)

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