This is topic Just a tiny bit disappointed . . . in forum Discussions About Orson Scott Card at Hatrack River Forum.

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Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :
The good: The copy of First Meetings I ordered from the Hatrack store came today. Yay! [Smile] Just as cool-looking as I remembered (my copy is in storage, with most of my books), shiny and new. [Big Grin]

The slightly-disappointing: The signature. It's definitely OSC's signature. But unlike the books I have that he's signed, it's not real distinct. It's a bit . . . blurry.

Now, I can only imagine what a (literal!) pain it must be to sign hundreds of book in succession. And since it's not an in-person booksigning, it's just bookafterbookafterbookafterbook, without breaks to chat and such. And my student (a recent OSC fan, for whom I bought the book) will, I'm sure, be thrilled by both the book and the signature.

Next time maybe I'll order earlier, and get one of the first books in the stack to be signed, instead of one in the middle. [Wink]
Posted by imogen (Member # 5485) on :
I got one signed a while ago to both Tony any myself - both the signature and dedication were very clear.

Maybe you just got a (as you say, middle of the stack) RSI copy?


I wonder: I know Tony has a special "signing pen" that he takes with him to festivals and stuff - free flowing ink, easier to write again and again and *again* with: whether OSC has a signing pen (or favoured brand) as well?
Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :
RSI? Wazzat?
Posted by Orson Scott Card (Member # 209) on :
Blurry? What, do you think I can BLUR my signature? I wouldn't know how to begin.

Here's a thought: It's a more absorbent PAPER, less crisp than the thicker hardcovers. WHY? So that it will bulk up the book and look like it's thicker than it really is.

It has nothing to do with my speed of signing. Sheesh, Rivka! The SLOWER you sign, the more the ink has time to flow out and "blur" - it's the quick signatures that are crisp, all else being equal!
Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :
*twinkle* Scott, I can make xeroxes of the signature in this book and another that you signed for me . . . oh. No, almost all of my books are in storage at the moment.

But this morning I did look at one you signed for kat, and it is as crisp and clear as I remember.

Don't worry. This simply means that there's a second benefit that comes from showing up at your booksignings. [Big Grin]
Posted by Rackham (Member # 8127) on :
[Smile] [Smile] [Smile]

Mister Card......................... What dose it take to get a signed copy of one of your books:)
Posted by Hobbes (Member # 433) on :
The Hatrack store has some of his books signed, that you can buy at a very good discount. You can also get bookplates from Hatrack that he will sign and you can put in one of your books. Other than that the only way to get it is to go to one of his signings. When the next one will be depends on how fast he finishes Rasputin with Mrs. Kidd (hint, hint).

Hobbes [Smile]
Posted by Orson Scott Card (Member # 209) on :
Truly, Rivka, it's about the pen and the paper. I can't think of a way to sign my name, faster or slower, that would make the ink seep into the paper differently from whatever way it naturally does. The paper in First Meetings IS different from the normal paper in my other books from TOR.

But it's kind of absurd to put about the rumor that I'm signing these books somehow "differently" or in an inferior way. I only know one way to sign my name. It's always at the same speed. If I slow down I wouldn't even know how to make my signature. And speed up? I couldn't possibly sign any faster than I ALWAYS do.

So it really worries me that you would insist that a book you bought from me had a "second-rate" signature. I SIGN MY BOOKS THE SAME WAY EVERY TIME and any differences have a physical cause that can't be helped. All signatures from my store are authentic, signed by me. So please don't make irresponsible accusations (even if unintended) that what we sell is inferior. We're hoping that sales from the website will help defray some of the costs of running the place. And to badmouth the products we sell (which includes the signature) might very well convince someone NOT to buy from the Hatrack store something that they would otherwise have bought.

I know this is not your intention, Rivka, but when you start a story about a product, you affect its sales. We don't pressure people to buy stuff, but we do ask that you not discourage people with complaints like "blurry signature." In part because I can't even fathom why you would complain. I signed it. I can't help how the ink bleeds into the paper. What can i possibly do about this? And what do you fantasize that I do differently in order to cause it? If you had brought the same book to me at a signing, in person, the ink would have worked into the paper EXACTLY the same way.

And what do you think a Xerox would prove? Nobody's doubting that the signature is blurry or fuzzy. What I'm doubting is that it has anything to do with the way I sign my name. And I'm also doubting that it's anything that can be helped or corrected. These are real printed copies of the regular hardcover edition, really signed by me with my real hand in real ink in exactly the way I sign all my books. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH THEM.

So please stop telling people that there is.
Posted by Little_Doctor (Member # 6635) on :
Of course, you two could always settle this in court.
Posted by Rackham (Member # 8127) on :
i dont think it needs to go that far. Both Rivka and Card seem like sensible people.
imgoing to check out the store here, im looking for a hard cover copy of Enders Game With, of course, a signature. that reminds me i saw a first edition aoutographed EG book on ebay going for around 300 last i checked.... would have bid but low on funds.
Posted by Inspired (Member # 8130) on :
Um, Mr. Card, is there any chance you'll be having a booksigning in Wisconsin anytime soon?
Posted by Little_Doctor (Member # 6635) on :
Hehe...Rackham, I was just joking.
Posted by Inspired (Member # 8130) on :
I really hope there will be. Hopefully in Madison or some place.
Posted by Minerva (Member # 2991) on :
I'm guessing OSC was just kidding, but just in case he wasn't.

Rivka is a very valued member of this board. She said the signature was blurred because it was blurred. Not really a rumor if it's 100% true.

So if a crisp signature is important to people, they should purchase a different signed book.
Posted by Rackham (Member # 8127) on :
as was i LD.
Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :

*taken aback*

1) Did I mention that I was PRIMARILY happy about having received the book, and that my student would love it? I thought I had, but given the response . . .

2) I didn't mean "blurry" the way I think it has been taken. Not smeary or anything like that! Like . . . *gropes for words* . . . the letters are not distinct, as though they were written in a hurry.

Much the way my signature on the 20th student-late-note of the morning is far less distinct that on the first. On the first, it can be read, letter by letter. Later in the morning . . . well, how good are you at code-breaking? [Wink]

I apologize if my comments were taken as anything other than very gentle teasing. [Frown]

[edit: removed redundant word]

[ May 31, 2005, 10:36 AM: Message edited by: rivka ]
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 124) on :
Where are you in Madison, Rackham?
Posted by Jay (Member # 5786) on :
I went through my over 100 OSC signed books and found all of them to have the same high quality signature.
Posted by Rackham (Member # 8127) on :
Madison? dont know what you mean. but if your refering to where i live, im in Anaheim California.

100 signed books.... man if thats not dedication....
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 124) on :
Sorry. Meant to address that to Inspired. [Smile]
Posted by Farmgirl (Member # 5567) on :
I SIGN MY BOOKS THE SAME WAY EVERY TIME and any differences have a physical cause that can't be helped
Wow Scott! I don't think I can even sign my name the exact same every time on a bank check! You have my admiration that you can keep it up, with absolutely no differences, over hundreds of books that you sign....

Be easy on rivka, OSC. She's a great lady and one of your biggest fans, a long-time Hatracker and comes to every Con and is wonderful to all the people. (Have you met her?) Plus, she's got that great Sparkle. (yes, I know she will kill me for that).

I think you just came down a little too harsh on her, and that just doesn't seem like your regular character..

Posted by Morbo (Member # 5309) on :
That's a great picture of Rivka! But it's a little blurry.
Posted by Farmgirl (Member # 5567) on :
Posted by neo-dragon (Member # 7168) on :
I think that Mr. Card was just overreacting on purpose for fun. I'm sure he's not actually mad at rivka or anything. Sometimes it's fun to pretend to be all upset and offended, and then simply laugh when the bewildered target starts apologizing profusely.

Or you just caught him on a bad day [Smile]
Posted by Shan (Member # 4550) on :
Morbo - that was very naughty!

Lovely pic, FG and rivka, and even lovelier words.

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :
[Laugh] Morbo

FG, thank you. [Smile]
Posted by Inspired (Member # 8130) on :
To TomDavidson: I live in one of the smaller Wisconsin towns (smaller as in most of them are tiny anyway) and the closest bookstore that might have a signing in my knowledge would be in Madison (the capital of Wisconsin). It is a two hour drive from Lancaster, where I live.

To the rest of the conversation: Yes, I think OSC was just kidding, or he could have bounced a check [Dont Know] Either way, I'm going to drop from exhaustion on my keyboard, so................... [Sleep]
Posted by Farmgirl (Member # 5567) on :
I think that Mr. Card was just overreacting on purpose for fun.
I kinda wondered that myself -- he's a hard person to figure out sometimes. But I didn't see how it could be 'for fun' if it could hurt her feelings.

Maybe I'm just being over-sensitive. Or over-protective. You pick.

Posted by Anna (Member # 2582) on :
What the?????
In case OSC was serious, I have to tell him that this kind of reaction, especially toward a well-known and respected member of this board, does not make me eager to buy his books.
Posted by docmagik (Member # 1131) on :
Look, try to see this from OSC's point of view. He's operating this whole forum at a loss for himself, and he's openly stated the purpose of the store is to try to help get this site to start paying for itself. He's not hung up about that--he's left the forum here for years losing money, partly from love of this community and partly because he could easily think of it as a "loss leader"--but he's tried with google ads and with the store to get the website to--not make him rich, but rather, just pay for its own existence.

So he spends time signing scores of books in the hopes his signature will be a motivation to buy from here rather than somewhere else.

And now, a respected (and charming) member of the board says the signatures on the ordered books aren't as good as his "live" signatures. Now, rather than adding value, this would imply the books he's selling are inferior even to an unmarked book.

I don't think anybody's done anything terrible here. Rivka gently teased, not realizing the potential implication, and OSC defended a product he's trying to sell in order to sustain this community.

I'm sure we all feel that OSC could sign Robert Jordan's name in his books if he wanted and we'd still think it was cool, since the real value of the signature is the additional connection it feels like it creates between the reader and the author. Something like, "Not only did he write the words, but this book actually passed through his hands."
Posted by Mindbowels (Member # 7407) on :
Lets all make up for the potential (though assuredly minor) loss of profits and click the tiny little almost unnoticeable google ads at the bottom! HOORAY FOR ADS!

*click* *click* *click*
Posted by Rackham (Member # 8127) on :
ads.... on hatrack..... where?!? [Smile]
Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :
*head in hands*

You know the worst part of all of this? Worse than the fact that something I expected to be slightly funny has turned into this big huge deal? [Wall Bash]

I don't think I can go to another of OSC's booksignings for a LOOOOONG time. [Frown]

*sigh* Well, it was about 13 years between the first one I went to and the second . . . you think five years would be long enough this time? [Dont Know]
Posted by Papa Moose (Member # 1992) on :
No, you can go right away -- just make sure you have him sign with a pen that smears, so you can then come here and talk about how much better the signatures are on books purchased directly from Hatrack River.

I honestly don't understand what would be negative about a blurry signature. Lends character. *smile*

Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :
*thinks about pointing out again that by "blurry" she did NOT mean "smeary"*

*decides to let that dead horse lie*

*starts hunting for particularly smeary pens*
Posted by Shan (Member # 4550) on :

Nathan has some particularly smeary pens - ya want em?
Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :
*laugh* Nah, I bet my kids have some too. Thanks, though. [Big Grin]
Posted by Shan (Member # 4550) on :
anytime! anytime!
Posted by mothertree (Member # 4999) on :
I told my husband I wanted a few of these books for my birthday. He will probably forget. So please don't complain about yours. I guess I also should not complain about my husband, either.

P.S. I guess I could also make the plea that the sale continue until after my birthday (which is June 12) in case my husband does forget, then I can still buy them. I haven't yet been able to read Teacher's Pest. I would really really appreciate it.
Posted by rivka (Member # 4859) on :
I wasn't complaining about my husband . . . ain't got none. [Wink]
Posted by Shan (Member # 4550) on :
I'm failing to see how the phrase "The slightly-disappointing" can be taken as complaining about anything at all. [Dont Know]

Describing a product received ("It's a bit . . . blurry") does not a complaint make, nor criticism level, nor any other obnoxious thing create.

It is just slightly possible that one or two signatures out of hundreds differ from the usual. This is not an impossible thing to have happen, nor does it reflect badly on the person signing OR the person commenting. If anything, it probably INCREASES the value as being a MORE unique product, more one-of-a-kind. [Cool]

rivka - you are a shining example of all the graciousness I have never been able to achieve in my 36 years. Keep up the good work, lady! [Smile]

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