Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A note on grimoire scalping...

The increasing popularity and publication of finely bound and limited edition esoteric books has been enthusiastically welcomed in recent years by both collectors and practitioners.  It's been said we are in a new 'Golden Age' of occult publishing.  However, increasing demand has also created an unfortunate side-effect: book scalping.  Recent esoteric books, some less than a year old, are now commanding astronomical sums on the secondary book market.  This is unfortunate, as it entices people to purchase these exceptional books for the sole purpose of reselling them for profit.  They have no interest in collecting fine bindings nor appreciation for the book's unique (and even sacred) content; they only see dollar/pound signs and a means to make a quick buck.

Many esoteric publishers, such as Scarlet Imprint, Fulgur Ltd., or Ixaxaar publish finely bound variants of their standard publications, usually limited to under 100 copies.  This can make acquiring copies somewhat difficult, as some books have been known to sell out in a matter of days or even a single afternoon.   I'll give a recent example: Last weekend Fulgur Ltd. sold all 88 copies of the Deluxe edition of The Sacrificial Universe by David Chaim Smith.  Pre-order began on Friday.  By Monday all copies were sold.  This is wonderful news for both Fulgur and Mr. Smith.  I should also note that, as of this writing, there are still copies of the standard edition available here-- this one should not be missed.  This clearly shows there is a large demand for fine editions.  Unfortunately, high demand and enthusiasm has led to predatory purchasing practices by some shady individuals.  Of the very limited copies available, a portion is snatched up by profiteers at the expense of legitimate readers.  With such limited runs, it's a shame that an increasing number of copies are not ending up in the hands of worthy and appreciative book lovers, as intended.  Instead they end up on ebay (as soon as the title is sold out) for a ridiculously inflated sum.

The Society of Esoteric Endeavour recently published Nigel Pennick's The Toadman: Lore & Legend, Rites & Ceremonies, and Related Traditional Magical Practices, limited to 150 copies and bound in toad skin.  Naturally, a book this unique sold out quickly.  The title is only weeks old and already someone is attempting to sell their half-leather copy on ebay for $1,263.50.  This is mercenary book scalping at its worst.  With a book this new, clearly the owner had no intention of keeping it, and only bought it to resell it for profit.  It's one thing to decide years down the road that one no longer wants a book and sell it at the going rate; it's quite another to buy it with immediate resale in mind.  Anyone can understand why a 20+ year old rare book may have a high price tag.  However, it looks pretty shady when someone asks a thousand dollars for a brand new book.  They're exploiting the publisher and reducing opportunities for genuine customers.

So what should be done to prevent this?  Can anything be done?  I think publishers may want to consider keeping track of who purchases their high-end editions.  A quick glance at ebay's occult book auctions will reveal that many scalped titles are being sold by the same individuals/sellers, some even brazen enough to show or list the book's limitation number.  This could easily be tracked to the buyer if the publisher wished to do so, and future sales could be restricted.  Many publishers already have a 1 book limit.  However, with so few copies, even a handful of grimoire scalpers can make a significant negative impact, leaving many legitimate buyers out of luck.

There could be a magical answer to this problem, though built-in curses designed to sabotage the efforts of would-be scalpers should be avoided (at least publicly).  Official Melissa Press did something similar to combat illegal scanning and file sharing.  Their newest title, Infernal Colopatrion, warns, "Also know that each copy has upon it a curse that will activate if someone steals your copy, or if the book is scanned or illegally uploaded."  While I appreciate the magical LoJack, statements like this could create some legal issues, as it could be viewed as a threat.  Throwing curses around in public generally isn't a good idea.  Official Melissa Press may want to have a lawyer examine the statement for potential liability issues, if they haven't already.

Lastly, unscrupulous re-sellers do a disservice to the publishers, authors, honest customers, and most importantly, the books themselves by reducing them to a commodity rather than a sacred text or work of art.  I urge all my readers to refrain from purchasing books from scalpers.  Please, only buy books that are offered at a fair and reasonable price.  Scalped books hurt the industry and its loyal readers.  If we pull together we can reduce the demand.  With our help grimoire scalpers will get stuck with pricey books they don't even want. 


  1. This is a subject about which I get very upset. I understand and support trying to make a living anyway necessary, but the individuals you are talking about are absolutely unscrupulous. I recently sold one copy of the fine edition of my book, and despite it being your Book of the Year, having sold out in a few hours and just being a great work, I sold it signed and consecrated for under $400. (Original price was $300). Last week I found one of the resellers you speak of selling one of these editions for $1700USD. And what angers me is that he will get it.

    Jim Banner of Trident Books sells his Fine and Standard Bindings on eBay, $66 for standard and $129 for fine editions, not limited quantity and he almost always has a couple up for sale. Those same resellers buy from him for $66 and $129, and in the very same day, while he still has copies up on eBay himself, they list them for sale for $200 for the standard editions and $500+ for the fine editions. Makes absolutely no sense whatsoever, but they do make plenty of sales at that price.

    Anyone looking for copies of sold out, limited editions and antiquarian works I would strongly suggest you contact Weiser Antiquarian and Midian Books, who are honest and reputable dealers that never seek to gouge.

    1. Thank you for your comments, Mr. Cecchetelli. It appears we share a similar pet peeve. I'm glad you included a list of reputable sellers. I had considered doing same, but I was afraid I'd accidentally leave someone out, and thereby indirectly imply they are not on the 'safe list', as it were. So I decided to refrain. However, I agree; the dealers you mention are a good place to start.

      I've wanted to bring up this topic for a while now. I feel a close connection to esoteric publishers, authors, and readers and hate to see people take advantage of them. The occult book industry isn't very big, and noone is getting rich from it. For most it's a labor of love. So when people exploit the industry they exploit the generostiy and goodwill of people I admire, some of whom are good friends. It's a greedy prick-move and shouldn't be tolerated. Hopefully this post will bring more attention to a growing problem and perhaps generate some workable solutions.

    2. I do wish publishers could, or would, put a limit on the quantity per purchase, at least when the release is new. I really appreciate having multiple editions, and the ability for a basic edition to remain unlimited, so we can choose to shun resellers. I may have really wanted the beautiful limited edition, but I'll settle for a basic edition and the knowledge - without enriching someone's greed.

    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    4. @Richard, I do know you and of your eBay business, however I wasn't referring to you in the previous post. The reseller I am speaking of is out of New York, and unlike yourself, has no interest in books beyond what profit can be made in a quick flip, and did in fact have the book listed for $1700.

      While I still can't say I approve of the enormous markup in price, I can respect the fact that as a collector you base your prices not on how much you can possibly get, but what value you place in the craftsmanship and design. I actually spoke to Peter and Alkistis on facebook about a month ago after discovering your auctions and they had some positive things to say about you, one of which being that you ARE in fact a lover of books, which is why my contempt for the individual of whom I spoke in my original comment here did not extend to you. Frankly I dont know why you saw my post as an attack on you personally. While I didnt provide the name of the reseller I'm speaking of, I did state that he has CK listed for $1700, and from your own reply, thats a price at which you've never set it. So why did you think this was directed to you?

      I understand well the many reasons why, when in dire straits, people go to you to sell books, and believe it or not when I did sell that fine edition of CK I had intended to offer it to you for the same $400, even seeking you on facebook only to find that you dont have a page. Shortly thereafter a friend expressed regret that he hadnt been able to get one before they sold out, and I offered it to him.

      Regardless of how you interpreted my comment and the angst expressed in it, it wasn't directed at you. YOU'RE not the one I take issue with, because despite your marking up the prices on books far beyond retail, you actually do appreciate the work that goes into them and you are a collector yourself. I respect that, and the fact that you found the binding SI did on my behalf worthy of the $1900 you got for it is quite flattering. The one I DO take issue with is the one who has absolutely no interest in the books, their content or beauty, and whose only goal is to buy up as many of the fine editions as possible - making it impossible for the average guy who doesnt happen to pick one up in the first hour after release - and then sells them for quadruple what he paid. Whether or not you think I have a right to be angry with him, I am, and justifiably so. Not YOU, who have a love for beautiful books and values them based on their beauty, but him, who has probably never read one the title of which doesnt end in "....For dummies" and buys up a half dozen fine editions making it impossible for someone who will actually love them to get one, just to make a buck.

      As for your assertion that I had little to do with the work, I have always acknowledged that SI went above and beyond to bring this to life. What I gave them was a typed up transcription of a handwritten manuscript written from a cell at USP Lewisburg. My French was sufficiently developed to read the originals and put it into English, but certainly not flawlessly, and Alkistis, being a French speaker, went through the whole MS word for word and corrected my errors, pointing out where words I translated one way could be more accurately rendered in another. I am indebted to Peter and Alkistis immeasurably for that, for what I gave them was a rough manuscript of a great idea, and they were able to work with an unpolished and inexperienced writer like me to make it something beautiful. But it is definitely my work, flaws and all.

      In summation Richard, my issue isnt with you. You love books, as do I, and you collect them and quite probably love your collection more than I do my own. I dont know why you felt my words were an attack on you, but they werent. The price I mentioned was about $200 short of what you seem to have gotten, so I dont know why you assumed I was referring to you.

    5. Michael,

      Just for the record, I have removed my previous reply to you, as I believe I misunderstood who you were targeting, and we did communicate, & privately resolve any issues that arose from that. So I saw no reason for it to be seen, and I would have removed it earlier, but I do not believe that the delete option was available previously, and it has been quite a while since I visited this site.

      I only returned recently, when my attention was drawn to comments posted by a worm called Gehazi (Andrew Williams/ aka rabbitrat). I had the misfortune of having to deal with this person, earlier this year. He purchased a fine copy of a rare edition of Commentaries of Al (UK edition, in perfect DJ) for the bargain price of $367 (the same edition, in slightly worse condition, is currently listed on Treadwell's for 450 GBP (or around $700 USD). Within an hour of purchasing, he wanted to cancel the transaction. I should have simply cancelled the transaction, but I chose to honour it, & give him more time to pay. He accepted, paid, the book was sent. What I did not expect, was that on receiving it, he would claim it was "not as described", and try to extort, a further discount, or a refund. What followed, was a dispute - like I have never seen before! This madman, tried to sabotage the dispute process, by flooding it with hundreds of posts, with most of his responses, similar to what you can see below, but more incoherent, contradictory, and full of lies, name-calling & insults.

      I only bring this up, because having just read his Sept 30 posts, I can see that he has read my earlier response to you, and thought he could use it, to leech his way into the conversation, earn some brownie points with you, & continue with his attack directed at me, and to try to involve others as well.

      As I have stated above, & also in my reply to Gehazi (Andrew Williams/ eBay ID - Rabbitrat), given below - it should be noted, that this person is mentally unbalanced, is dangerous, & should be avoided at all costs. Anyone who sells on eBay, should block him from buying (eBay ID - rabbitrat). The same applies outside of eBay, his name is Andrew Williams, his last known location is: TN, United States. He is not well, and represents Trouble, with a capital T! I hope that no one else has the misfortune of having to deal with this parasite, so I offer this warning to all.

      Richard Abraxas

  2. We strictly limit who we sell to and the number of copies of fine editions that we allow per person. We also aim to produce enough fine editions so that our regular readers can get a fine edition if they so desire.

    We make this even more accessible by accepting payment in installments, as not everyone has the ready cash for a fine bound book.

    However, people do resell books and often for legitimate reasons. When we started out we angrily blacklisted some people for reselling only to discover that they had genuine reasons for doing so. It is perhaps as Boris Balkan says, that some books have their own destiny. Ultimately, who are we to interfere with that?

    When we released the fine of The Red Goddess we only sold it to Babalon devotees. So there are countermeasures that can be taken. We are always careful to reserve books for those with a particular affinity or relationship with the spirit concerned. We are approachable, just write to us.

    But we think it is more important to concentrate on the material getting out to students, which is why we release exactly the same material in fine, hardback, paperback and now digital editions. The limitation on access should not be simply to those with the deepest pockets, or the most resilient credit card!

    The number of serious collectors buying these books is small, as is the number of serious magicians. It can be easy to be mislead by the amount of noise on the internet as to the real scale of the esoteric community. A frustration, certainly when we see the amount of money that can change hands which does not go to those who put their blood into the work.

    In this sense, the internet is a scourge, but it has also enabled us to survive as a publisher. The best advice we can offer is to simply get in touch with us to avoid missing out on a fine edition you have set your heart on.

    My best,

    In Nomine Babalon

    Peter Grey

  3. "Do What Thou Wilt Shall be the Whole of the Law"

    Peter's comment seems intelligent and reasonable. Some of the others are in the dark ages. I am one of the leprous resellers and I appreciate and collect as much or more than most. I read the material and understand when possible!

    The big question I think is why do some think they have so much more right to a book at the price they desire? They are so much more humble, devoted and less afflicted by the seven deadly sins?

    Many of the basic tenets of magick are about improving your personal life and excelling on the outside. CREATE reality. Exercise WILL. My daily life is about improvement, hard work, excellence and self honesty. I function on many levels in many venues of life.

    If you are sitting in a chair right now overweight, underpaid, unfulfilled, regularly use mind altering chemicals which allow you to "deal" with the world under the guise of "enjoyment", never pursuing "dreams" please don't waste your time publicly complaining about what someone else is doing.

    And gosh, have you noticed the price of gold, gas, oil, consumables, food, clothes, etc., etc.?! Wake UP! Look at the world you live in!

    "Love is the Law, Love under Will"

    1. This is a rather feeble justification for extortion, flynbrian. Skilled magicians can create, exercise will, and improve themselves without doing it at the expense of others; in fact, they benefit others.

      Snatching something out of someone's hand and holding it out of reach (or for a steep price) is a schoolyard tactic, not a magical feat.

  4. Hi there! Just wanted to let you know that we at Official Melissa Press did run the book curse by our attorney and while she couldn't guarantee someone wouldn't try to bring about a petty lawsuit, she did say a lawsuit wouldn't stand in court. First, the curse is not directed at any individual and buyers are given fair warning up front before purchasing the book. Second, the only way the curse activates is if the person is doing something illegal with the book, which would require them to admit they committed theft and/or copyright infringement, thus incriminating themselves and opening themselves up for a counter suit the publisher or original book owner will surely win. Third, curses are subjective. No one would be able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that Official Melissa Press had cursed them specifically or that their run of bad luck was actually due to a supernatural curse. So we will continue to put the curses in our books and give buyers fair warning. If buyers aren't doing anything illegal with the book, then the curse is invalid and is irrelevant anyway.

    1. Thank you for your response. I'd love to see your press do well, so I admit I was a little concerned on your behalf. It's good to hear you've had it checked out by your attorney. Your recent title is impressive, and will be reviewed here in time. I wish your press the best of luck!

    2. Thank you! I'm glad I could shed some insight into that. I look forward to your review.

  5. I certainly agree with Boris.
    Some Ebayers do indeed resell new publications at ludicrously high prices. However while there are people out there who are willing to pay these prices the practice is going to continue.
    Suppose I'm stating the 'bleedin obvious' but I thought I'd put my two penneth in.

    Can I also suggest that Man,Myth and Magic is also a good site to check out for OOP and rare book (I have no direct affiliation to this site, only that it's run by a friend)

    Re posting this because, as always, I spot a typo after I've hit pulish!

  6. It might cut down the scalping if more people were to adopt Scarlet Imprint's business model. Some people are interested in some particular paths that have very little information on, and their limited runs only with such work (ixaxaar publishing any one?) tends to be part of the problem.

  7. +O+ Interesting discussion with solid points from both sides. I will have to reply in 3 parts, apologies in advance.
    In regards to placing a curse within books to ward off potential scalpers or pirates, We did and do something similar with a home-printed edition of our tome, CRUX. And originally with all our printed works various words or lines were changed so any pirate copy could be traced back. Obviously that cannot be done with identical volumes but it was a practical and efficient tactic. No-one has reproduced CRUX. I have printed the message that appeared in it as a separate letter, below.

    Despite the occasional pirate and some of our works floating around as pdfs, [and we had a large hand in this since we created and hosted them freely for years], the Temple largely retains control over its wares. That we are prolific writers who craft interesting material doesn't hurt either - People seem to prefer the hard-copies even if they have the pdf. However, we no longer offer pdfs from our print-on-demand bookstore [The Black Glyph Society] since several years ago we noticed the impending decline of the books as e-readers and such were coming into vogue and sought to protect the industry by mostly only hosting solid books. We offer a few downloads at best. Since we are continuously writing - and updating older versions every so often - most of the pdfs floating around are out of date or were distributed to serious students of the satanic/sinister by us directly. Can people copy our books - yes, and they do - but our work is such that it is prolific enough to survive that tactic, respected enough not to have that tactic abused, attractive and professional enough to encourage people to still buy a hard-copy. While we don't have the luxury of creating books with covers and insignia such as the exquisite examples that mark this blog and others since we are a sinister independant publisher without recourse to the usual avenues [Ixaxaar and Fall of Man being the exceptions] - but I have always loved books - that I get to write them and sell them is a true joy - and though the tactile nature of our books is relatively uniform since we write the content, design the covers, and lulu puts it together for our readers in a fairly standard binding - we can still do a wonderful job of making them look interesting. We are confident of the content which we believe to be far more important than an attractive cover - and sales from the Glyph have consistently kept the Temple decently funded in the six years it has been operating quietly.

  8. We are also publishers/crafters of other things, Tarot, Abstract Games and these we print in a limited number and sometimes an exclusive price. Some of these do of course end up on ebay for exceptional amounts of money - but we supply our clientele first and foremost.
    Keeping in mind that for several years we archived hundreds of occult manuscripts freely, published our books freely, and gave them to genuine seekers working in various fields of the occult. The rationale for high pricing is this; Satanists of our particular genre should be capable of finding the funds required to purchase what they need. If they are clever they will find a way to contact us and discuss a price or terms, if they are seen to be genuinely assisting the sinister or our aims, overcoming struggle, obstacles, blinds and making progress in their path on their own usually private assistance and books are offered. Because we are not a large or traditional distributor we occupy a niche market. Those non-occultists or resellers who have money they are willing to spend are welcome to buy our goods and resell them at whatever price they like - since for the most part, the underground takes care of its own and those students who are genuine usually want for nothing with all manner of assistance being given. The Glyph has a large and dedicated clientele, Ixaxaar has even bought our books/cds* [cd line discontinued due to lulu's decision unfortunately with e-tech replacing it] in the past to re-sell and we see nothing wrong with it. For another aspect of our tradition is being able to find, access, befriend, contacts who can get these things for you by your own nous and skill and charisma. These are essential qualities to possess and those that don't have or develop them are at a huge disadvantage, but our tradition is elitist and we do not believe people are equal. Some get through, and some don't. Some bypass obstacles, and some don't. Some things should not be easy to get. Whilst I regret that for some people our wares are too highly priced - there is little we can do to reduce costs given how we operate and that our press is through a print-on-demand chain that scoops a large share of the profit - and we do not make a lot, just enough. And that's all I've ever asked from the Work.
    When we produce Tarot and such we cannot do runs of 100 or even 50. We generally do 18-24 and that causes costs to rise considerably. But, since we cater both for the cashed-up entrepreneur and the genuine occultist in different ways - our conscience on the matter is clear. We are all trying to survive and that is the bottom line.
    As Scarlet Imprint says, the number of collectors IS small but consistent. The number of genuine magicians also small but consistent. This number grows vastly wider however when your concern to teach is not merely concerned with occult students but a more general populace - since what is hidden from people, and therefore 'occult' - is a far larger scope and subject than magic is traditionally credited and concentrated with. There are also apparent to us vast differences in concern about what constitutes magic at 18-25 and what constitutes life at 40+. The phase of the Grimoire seems exhausted by middle-age when many people realize none of the magic they studied, or mountains of grimoires they read have answered the more serious questions in their life about their existence and purpose. But that is another topic altogether.

    Wonderful work on the blog, Boris.

    Thank you,

    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  9. [Warning Ward written in *C*R*U*X*]

    Friend of THEM,

    Thank you very much for supporting the efforts of the Temple of THEM to produce an independent Sinister Press.

    The manuscripts written by the ONA can be copied and distributed freely – but please do not make any sort of electronic copy of Crux or any sort of copy of the contents written by the Temple of THEM. We have worked long and hard on this volume and on making the means to publish it privately possible to help reduce the postage costs to others of books and materials from presently available distribution tendrils such as the Black Glyph. We are seeking to replace generic prints from corporate presses which only allow for limited options with organic hand-made efforts from which those responsible for assembly derive great pleasure and enjoyment, purpose and satisfaction. This operation would be irreparably damaged if pirated copies of Crux were to be made available.

    Each volume of Crux has been designed with an invisible and unique set of characteristics allowing us to track it back to who put it online – if that should happen.

    Please help us to preserve the integrity of this sinister clan-ship, increase the resources of the collective Sinister with the establishment of its own press, and to grow the Satanic Temple of THEM by keeping this volume to yourself.

    The crux is this:
    kindly don’t publish our details
    – and we won’t publish yours.

    Thank you.

    The Temple of THEM

  10. Thank you for taking the time to describe The Temple of THEM's unique anti-piracy methods, ISS. Your description of CRUX may have piqued the interest of some readers. Therefore I have taken the liberty of including a link to where CRUX can be purchased.


    Best of luck,

    B. Balkan

  11. +O+ Thank you Boris.

    I am greatly fascinated by your reviews, thank you for writing them. +O+


  12. +O+ The link posted to CRUX is no longer valid, Boris.

  13. would just like to add, despite his claims to the contrary Richard Abraxas is the lowest of the low, a scalper and a fraud in the extreme. He attempted to sell me a badly damaged copy of liber AL on ebay and threatened me claiming he would "contact his friends in the occult book market" to deny me the ability to purchase.
    Book dealers think about this when you sell to richard abraxas of australia, This man is buying your books to scalp them, that is the only reason, his entire enterprise on ebay is to defraud occult nerds, think about your own magical flow before becoming a part of his. If you value the sanctity of your text, never sell to Richard Abraxas.
    This man consistently lied, and attempted to intimidate me thinking I was like so many he has treated that way before. I urge everyone in this community to shut him out, never buy his books , and seek out the book dealers personally so that no one ever has to go through this foul hearted scalper again.
    his disrespectful tone and guilt is evident in his posts, how he berated the author of one of the books he is scalping, and mr cahctetelli I purchased your signed edition of crossed keys from weiser, I think you did a fine job, despite mr dick abraxas attempting to say you did not do the work.

    1. In summation and addition to M.C.'s post, no I can't agree that Dick Abraxas is anything but a merchant, who exploits an easily exploitable market ( occult nerds)-- if you feel this is good for your spiritual offerings, that is fine, if you don't want to be associated with the negative hole that is this man, then please do not sell to him any more.
      He specifically threatened me when he saw that I owned some scarlet imprint editions, telling me he would contact peter and alkitis and prevent me from collecting their works. So just think about the kind of person that does that. also notice how he chimed in when nobody accused, because he knows what a fraud he is , and he knows exactly what he is doing.

    2. Slight correction Gehazi, aka Andrew Williams, aka rabbitrat (ebay ID).
      I sold you a fine copy of Commentaries of Al, and you opened a false "Item not as described" claim, & tried to defraud me, by substituting an old beat up copy which you had bought elsewhere. You kept the mint copy, and sent the other copy, back to me as a return, after winning the dispute case. You certainly are a real class act Andrew, as you lied & changed your story, at least 20 times, in the 150 odd posts, that you uploaded during the dispute process. Every time I would respond to one of your posts, another 10 would be submitted, with endless lies, contradictions, and lunatic ravings - that only a paranoid-schizo mind could devise. As I advised you on a number of occasions, when you were just babbling, like a complete looney tunes - you need to keep taking your meds, Andrew, or you will end up back in an institution again.

      Even with your post here - you just couldn't help yourself. When no one offered a reply, you had to reply to your own post - what a complete loser!

      And while you did win the dispute case (as eBay generally gives the buyer the benefit of the doubt), and you did receive a refund. What you may not be aware of, is the fact that eBay did not believe you one bit, and after they issued the refund, they reimbursed the full amount, back into my account, and removed the negative feedback that you had left me.

      And while I had considered warning other publishers & book dealers about you, and also checking with Peter if he knew you, I thought it really wasn't worth the time, or effort, to bother people, about an insect, such as your self. And in any event, it seems you have already done a fine job, of showing everyone, what a pathetic attention seeker you are, and just how unbalanced you really are.

      I did however, warn a few dealers on eBay about you - since I didn't want to see them get burnt by a fraudster, such as your self.

      As for your concerns about my response to MC, that was just a misunderstanding, which was resolved a long time ago, and we have communicated & dealt with one another, on many occasions since then. So don't worry your little insect mind about these matters. Just keep listening to the voices in your head.

      No doubt, when you finally see that you have received a reply (from someone other than your self), there will be a new flood of posts!

      Richard Abraxas

  14. Excellent post. I saw a copy of The Infernal Colopatiron on Thompson Rare Books last year for I think $150. I set aside a little occult book fund for such opportunities but someone snatched it before I could get a prepaid card to order it the next day. The next one that surfaced is being sold by that Australian douchebag, Reix718 on Ebay for $1080. I wish Steph had cursed it for scalpers too.

  15. Now reix718 is selling the Totemic Innvocation of the Shadow Selves deluxe edition 10/11 on EBay for $50,000 USD when Caduceus Books listed this very copy (which he obviously bought from them) at 850 GBP on March 5. I don't know how anyone can defend this guy and his scalping practices; it is absurd. He even notes in his ebay sells pitch that he has no time for people like us that call him out on this ridiculous behavior. Oh please, how absurd! How can you resell something for $50 grand that you just bought for $850 GBP? The community knows this is ludicrous yet people keep selling this guy rare editions.

    1. He is also selling a Special Private Edition #2/3 of the Book of Sitra Achra for $128,218.00 -- you read that right. How he came up with that number is anyone's guess. Any sane person knows this price is utterly absurd (including reix718 I'm sure). It is my opinion his outrageous prices are only sad attempts to gain attention. I feel it would be best if people ignored him and is faux-auctions. I'm baffled why publishers still sell to this individual.

  16. Well said. Thank you for your work.

  17. I've been a collector of occult esoterica for many years. I collect for myself, not to resell. That being said, it is a reasonable assumption that a publisher charges enough per book to cover expenses and make a profit, therefore there is no justification for making the book unnaturally scarce except to drive up its value as a collectible once the print run ends. So, for publishers to complain that people are treating a collectible as a collectible, i.e. buying it and then reselling it for a profit, is not logical. If the goal really is to make sure that the books are available to anyone who can afford the original cover price, then it makes zero sense to limit production. Printers will print as many copies as they are paid for. Binders will bind as many books as they are paid for. Shippers will ship as many books as they are paid for. The only entity placing an artificial limit on production is the publisher. Stop limiting production and you take the teeth out of what you call a "predatory" practice, but which is actually just the nature of collectibles.