Friday, July 8th
After dealing with our auto repair issues and while my traveling companions struggle to get out of bed, I head downstairs to start getting our table set up. At first, getting it organized by myself seems a daunting task, since I usually have my wife Dawn and my son Nick there to help, but I seem to manage pretty well on my own. Or at least I didn’t destroy anything, or get injured. Always a plus.
Once I finished setting up, I decided to check out the other dealers that were setting up as well to see if there was any “must buys”. I got over to the Scary Monsters table and see a huge selection of movie reference books. I also noticed a “going out of business” sign. This could be dangerous. As I start to go through the titles, I notice the prices are super cheap, as well as seeing quite a few titles that I need for my own library, so my pile starts to build. But then I come across a bunch of the Crestwood House books, which were all priced at $5 each!
Now for those that might not be familiar with the Crestwood books, they were a series of titles made for the grade school level, where each volume featured a different classic monster or movie, with a shortened synopsis of the film, along with some other info about it. For those of us that grew up in the late ’70s/early ’80s, these books gave some youngsters their first taste into the world of monsters. The original set of six titles came out in 1977, with another nine following several years later. Then in by mid-’80s, another series called Movie Monsters followed with another twelve titles in that batch. Now while these were aimed at the grade school level, they are still a highly sought after collectible with adult Monster Kids, mainly because of the nostalgic factor. On the open market, they go anywhere from $20 to over $50 per title, depending on the condition and if they are an ex-library edition, which most of them were.
I only had one of these books in my own library, mainly because I wasn’t going to spend that kind of money on them. But seeing them for only $5 each, I grabbed every one that was there. I ended up with seven of the original series and five of the Movie Monster set. Sure, they weren’t in the greatest condition, and were all ex-library editions, but I didn’t care. I know I still have quite a few more titles to get to complete the series, but it’s always nice to have a goal, right?
As I continued to look through the rest of the books for sale, I kept seeing other great titles that I didn’t have, such as Brian Albright’s Regional Horror Films, 1958-1990. This McFarland title retails for $45, which is why I’ve never picked it up. And now here it was on the table for only $15. So another title for the library. Once I made my first pass and added up what the stack in my hand came to, I realized I didn’t have enough cash on me and needed to go back to my table and raid my change stash for the show to cover the balance. So I gave the books to Dennis Druktenis from Scary Monsters to hold them for a second while I went to grab the cash. Getting over to my table, by that time my business partner (and in life), Dawn, was sitting behind the table. “Uh…honey…I need to borrow some money from our change purse. I found some great deals on some books.” The look I got from her and knowing the true feelings behind that look, is one of the many reasons why we’re still together. She gets me.
Once the show opened, it seemed a little slow. We did okay for a Friday, but still had a good time. With all the items that were tempting my wallet, not to mention really wanting to be able to cover the expense of my car repairs, we’re hoping for a better day on Saturday.
Next up…Authors, Authors, and More Authors!