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-   -   A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one (http://forums.srellim.org/showthread.php?t=5892)

Hans Oct 13 2008 03:37 PM

A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one
Ever since I had access to the world wide web, and more specifically eBay, and owned a copy of Hargreaves "Forty Years of Publishing" I have coveted two Polish magazines. My wnt for them even predates my decision to collect all possible publications of Pern short stories. I don't know why they appealed to me so much, they just did and do. The two small black & white thumbnails on page 196 of Hargreaves only added to their mysticism. I am talking of the two issues of Fantastyka that together hold an unauthorized pulication of Dragonflight (maybe that's it, I've always had a weak spot for illegal and unauthorized Anne McCaffrey publications).
Why Hargreaves has them don as being in Serbo-croatian I don't know but for magazines published in Warsaw, Poland in Augst and September 1984 respectively (what Hargreaves correctly gives) is is obvious they are in Polish!
Special about these magazines is that the pages holding the Dragonflight text are designed to be removed and folded in half like a small booklet.

Anyway, after years of searching I finally found a second hand bookshop in the Polish city of Lodz who had them. I was elated and gladly paid the few dollars for the magazines and their postage to me. Books and magazines are cheap in Poland, where the salaries and cost of things is about one fifth of what they cost in the richer countries of the European Union (that will change oevr time, especially after poland also gets the Euro).

I received the magazines and they looked wonderful, especially for their age:


But when I opened them...

It turned out that someone had done exactly what Hargreaves describes should or can be done with the inner pages: they had taken them out.
The magazines are interesting and both seem to be special "Dragon issues", containing dragon stories, a couple even by well known authors and there are some nice articles I can't read, one of them about the World SF convention in Brighton 1984 with a picture with a very yong Harry Harrison, whom I had the pleasure to meet and chat with extensively at Eurocon 2007.
However, despite the fact they cost only about $1.50 each, the magazines were now worthless to me. Their heart, the Anne Mccaffrey story, "ripped" out of them...
I keep them for my collection of cover art. But I will need to resume my search for them.

The people at Tani Antiquariat were wonderful. The things were so cheap and their service so nice that I certainly didn't want to be too harsh with them for not checking if they were complete. After all, I had asked for the Fantastyka magazines of August and September 1984 and myself had not specified that the "Jezdczy Smokow" pages should be in there. Only when you leaf through it and look at the page numbers you see and realise there are many pages missing. Anna of the bookshop were obviously horrified and, without me asking for it, located the actual book Jezdczy Smokow (Dragonflight) on a Polish eBay-like site, bought it and asked if they could make up with that and if I wanted the book instead. I hadn't the heart to explain it wouldn't be the same but accepted their kind offer and insisted to pay the postage costs for it to be sent to me and implored them to please be on the lookout for complete issues of the Fantastyka magazine.

So a happy and sad experience at the same time. And a very good experience with a Polish second hand bookseller who also sells on eBay!

edith Oct 13 2008 04:02 PM

Re: A sad collector's experience
Oh no!
I suppose it is something that you'd have to know about to know they were missing :(

Sandi Oct 13 2008 10:30 PM

Re: A sad collector's experience
Well, it's a shame the pull-out had been pulled out but you did make a connection that may prove useful in future, not to mention verifying that Anne is loved in Poland too!

mawra Oct 13 2008 10:50 PM

Re: A sad collector's experience
I am sorry you did not get what you wanted.

Lady Maelin Oct 14 2008 12:04 AM

Re: A sad collector's experience
I am glad to see that you at least have the covers, and interesting at that, and that they are in excellent condition. Perhaps soon you will be able to find the whole magazine, and in the condition that the cover of these are in. You do have some very interesting collection adventures as well as the books:bouncy::tilt:;).

jube Oct 14 2008 01:04 AM

Re: A sad collector's experience
Poor Hans, at least even if it's only for the cover art and knowing it's still out there!

Becky Oct 14 2008 01:58 AM

Re: A sad collector's experience
That's so sad that the pull outs were actually pulled out, but then if that's what was intended, then it could be a long hunt for the complete magazines. Good luck with your search! I hope you find complete copies soon!

Hans Oct 14 2008 02:44 AM

Re: A sad collector's experience
Poland is one of the countries with the most translations, Sandi! Together with Germany, France and Italy

Yes, I'm glad for the covers too (since I do collect cover art and the pics in Hargreaves are small and black and white) but since this first search took about 5-6 years I'm not expecting to find them (again) soon :)

Lady Maelin Oct 15 2008 03:05 PM

Re: A sad collector's experience
Well at least you have the cover art to enjoy while you continue looking for the whole magazines. Good Luck my friend:good:

L'isa Oct 17 2008 10:54 AM

Re: A sad collector's experience
Sorry to hear about your trouble with the magazines, but like someone said further up at least you have made a connection that may prove to be worthwhile in the future. Hope you find the complete ones.

Hans Nov 16 2012 07:25 AM

Re: A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one
Right, how procrastinating can one be... We can actually turn this sad collectors experience, which I wrote about in 2008!, into a happy one. And I utter that wonderful word: procrastinating because I have been for sure.

A month after acquiring the two Fantastyka magazines I got an email from the Polish seller... and... wait for it...


And... they offered them for free because of the fact I sent them the whole story about why I had wanted those two magazines so badly and why I had been so disappointed. At the time they apoligised and offered a refund but I thought at the time I couldn't fault them, I could have inquired and asked and the whole transaction involved such a small amount if money I would have been ashamed to accept the refund after they had sent me the magazines.

Well, maybe that good deed paid off, I don't know. But they asked: Did I still want the booklet. YES, YES, YES, please, I wants!

So After a week or so I received the coveted trinket, the collectors item I searched for since I knew of its existence. It's a little damaged at the bottom of the spine and definitely has general wear but it looks great to me. The man or woman who toke the pages out of the magazines (which are twice the size of the booklet, which is A5 or about half of a letter sized paper) did so with care, cut the pages to half their size and took the trouble to bind themby threading a red thread through the spine to hold the pages together as a little booklet. Wonderful. It's the cheapest of cheapest quality paper and of course the dragon does not look Pernese at all but it deserved a special place in my collection, especially because it is one of those items that has a nice and wonderful story to go with it.

Why I never told you this earlier, I don't know but I hope to have time to tap into a backlog of acquitistions and maybe even write a Colelctors Highlight or two in the future and this eemed a good beginning :)

Cover of the little magazine

Magazine folded open (sorry for the photo quality)

First page, with inlying receipt :)

granath Nov 16 2012 12:47 PM

Re: A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one
Lovely find, and what fantastic service!

Bruce Nov 16 2012 05:08 PM

Re: A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one
Good things come to he who waits! I remember when I read the original post , thinking what a shame the middle had been pulled out. But now to have the complete set, even if a little worn, is fantastic. Good for you Hans!

mawra Nov 16 2012 10:57 PM

Re: A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one
Wery nice finds. I do have to wonder why someone would want to go between wearing that little.

kindan Nov 16 2012 11:36 PM

Re: A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one
I love it when sellers are nice about things and not "NO RETURNS!". Gives me faith in humanity.

Lady Maelin Nov 17 2012 12:07 AM

Re: A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one
:dance:CONGRATULAIONS Hans:dance:...What a fantastic end to your original treasure hunting
story. The little book looks very good actually to me...especially
for all that it's gone through.

I'm thrilled to hear that you're going to be showing some more of
your McCaffrey book collection;), as well as doing another :good::bouncy:*HIGHLIGHT*:bouncy::good:, I have always
enjoyed reading those interesting articles...and saving them into my
own collection.

P'ter Nov 17 2012 11:20 AM

Re: A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one
The black-and-white internal illustration looks like it's inspired by the works of William Blake.

Cheryl Nov 27 2012 12:39 PM

Re: A sad collector's experience...uh, make that a happy one
A fantastic, surprise happy ending to your tale! Congratulations friend!

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