A Word of Warning from Awful Books

The first thing you must ask yourself is - why books? If you think you're going to rake in a lot of cash through speculation, don't kid yourself! The return-on-investment, or ROI, is extremely low. You might get lucky and latch onto a single title or series of editions that spike in the short term, but books generally plummet in value shortly after their initial publishing. So much so that you'd have more success panning for gold in the Catskills or betting on the darkest horse at your local racetrack.

Indeed, the price of almost all signed & numbered or lettered editions has become so high (sometimes running into the thousands) that you're better-off obtaining them second-hand on eBay rather than from a reseller or directly from the publisher. A typical book will, after a short time of intense online trading, decrease sharply in asking price, sometimes selling for a small fraction of its MSRP.

However, there is something unique and special about owning a limited, signed, and either numbered or lettered book. If you are especially fond of a select group of authors, locating special editions of their books can be a joyous exercise. These editions become a lasting record of their accomplishments, packaged in an exemplary format, and highly restricted in their published units (usually only a few hundred).

So, if you're willing to shoulder the ever-increasing expense of book collecting, then I strongly encourage you to read this site thoroughly, as there are editions worth pursuing and editions not worth the paper on which they're printed. Caveat emptor!