Tuesday 9 March 2010

Signing at Forbidden Planet

Just a reminder that I'll be signing at Forbidden Planet in London on saturday 13th March between 1 and 2 pm.

In the comments to the last post, Richard asks about how many items he can bring. To be honest, I've always been happy to go with the flow and sign whatever's offered - preferably some form of written matter although I'll make exceptions. At the same time, it's clear that a person who wants, say, eighteen items signed, can cause a measure of aggravation for those waiting in line behind who may just have one or two items and/or trains, buses to catch. So at Boskone the organisers stipulated that I would sign a maximum of three items at a time; anyone who wanted more than that would just have to go back to the end of the line and wait their turn again. This worked pretty well; no one was left with stuff unsigned and by the end of proceedings, there were only a handful of people in the line anyway so the wait time was small. Ultimately I'll leave it to the shop organisers to dictate proceedings but I can't imagine that we wouldn't be able to work out something similar in Forbidden Planet. There probably won't be that many people there anyway: when I signed for The Prefect, which was the first signing of any kind I'd done in the UK in two years, we got twenty attendees. A year later, with House of Suns, we got twenty three. So - while I'm grateful to each and every one of those people who did show up - I'm not expecting hundreds on saturday. Of course, it would be brilliant if I was proved wrong...

(You're probably wondering: how can Reynolds be so anal as to remember how many people turned up at a signing two years ago? The answer is that I promised myself that if more than twenty people showed up for the House of Suns signing, I'd go and buy that shiny blue Telecaster I'd had my eye on. While it wasn't exactly a landslide victory, I was able to go and hit the Charing Cross music shops afterwards. Which was nice.)


  1. As long as one person turns up, it isn't a wash ;-)

    Really looking forward to Terminal World. Have a great signing!

  2. Hi Al,
    I really hope to catch you over in America at some point but until then, I hope all goes well this Saturday and the fans show up in mass to have their books signed by their favorite author!
    On a side note, it looks like your favorite actor finally got the recognition he deserves. I've yet to see Crazy Heart, but I'll try to make a point of doing so next weekend.

  3. I'm sorry that I won't be able to make it this Saturday because I'm away, but I would definitely have been there otherwise, so you can count me as one of the 23plus... Best wishes, and looking forward to the book. Adam Davison

  4. Hi Al,

    Hmmmm, Saturday, Terminal World, I may just turn up and say Hi.


  5. The one time I've met you in person, Al, was at Worldcon in San Jose in 2002. They had similar "3 books per person, then go to the back of the line" rules, which seemed to work well. Though honestly since I own UK hardcovers of all your books, I'm not sure I could have carried more than 3 at a time anyway. ;-)

    Hopefully I'll catch you again in the SF bay area someday - I have another 6 or 7 hardcovers for you to sign!

    (I actually dimly remember Forbidden Planet from my two trips to London as a teenager - in 1984 and 85. Now I feel old.)

  6. Al, any chance you could visit Dublin for signing of TW?


  7. Dan: I'd gladly visit Dublin, but I don't tend to initiate these things, alas. I was there a couple of years ago for Octocon, though.

    Michael: Forbidden Planet has moved at least once since then, maybe twice - it's now a very big and slick store. My first visit was 1983 - I scored copies of Gateway, Forever War and a James White book, if memory serves.

  8. Noticed that Terminal World was on sale in my local waterstones yesterday.

    Have to say that I was a little dissapointed with how the amazing cover artwork has come out on the shiny / glittery cover... looks much better in original form.

  9. I always lays feel sorry for authors sitting alone and waiting. They look so uncomfortable. ( that want happen to you, I guess it was 23 people every minute. Good luck on the signing, after all you are in the top league!

  10. Hi
    I'm going to miss your book signing on Saturday, unfortunately out of the Country. Can you possibily sign a copy 'To Steve' and I will get a friend to pick it us for me. Would really appreciate it. I have all your books and I have been to all your signings, but this one.

  11. No signings in the Bristol/Bath area by any chance? Have a big pile of books which I should read before buying more, but a signed edition of your new book could be the perfect excuse to buy another one to sneak on top of the others.

  12. I'm even more anal, Alastair - I invited some of my vast crowd (ho ho) round the corner for a beer afterwards.

  13. Thanks all. Anonymous - whether or not I can sign one "To Steve" will depend on Forbidden Planet, but I'll mention it.

    Kim: it's not really in my hands, alas. I was at the one-day convention in Bristol in September though, and may well make it again this year.

    Neal: I'm sure you made a few friends! I've had zero show up for one of my signings, so I reckon it can't get much worse than that.

  14. Hello there...I'd back up what Kim asked and pitch for a Bristol signing if at all possible...don't think I will be able to persuade my daughter to give up the promised trip to Alice in Wonderland this Saturday so that I could get up to London...oh well. Hope it all goes well

  15. Dear Mr. Reynolds,

    How many ended up showing for the signing? I’m sure that given your amazing talent, many came to see you. You really are a fantastic author who is also well known around the world. Can’t wait for TW to hit the shelves in the States.

    Oh yeah, Happy birthday.
    From somewhere in the outskirts of Boston…

  16. Aaargh! I've just read this post and I've been at work 15 mins walk away from Forbidden Planet all day! And I've missed it. And I have all your books except Terminal World...


    No chance of a repeat date ?

  17. Hi,

    I was there yesterday and even though I did not count the people, I think there was more than the previous signing.

    Anyway, you were as kind as usual and had a great time.


  18. Thanks to all who attended. I didn't do a head count but the figure I heard was 25 - 30, so a little up on 2008.

    Phillip: unfortunately I don't think the economics would justify another signing until I have another book out, alas.

  19. Terminal World just arrived from amazon.co.uk to home in Aus, really looking forward to digging in.

  20. Was it only as little as 25 - 30? Seemed like more than that from the point of view of one of those in the queue.

    Thanks once again for the dedication.

  21. Hi Al,

    My son and I were at the signing- so we are now a two copy family. Both about half way through and both really enjoying the it.
    Now the little bugger wants to go to Eastercon and get you to sign the rest of his collection.
    My first visit to FP was back when it was in Denmark street- wooden floors, bare walls.
    I don't supose you are old enough to rememebr the old Dark they Were and Golden Eyed bookshop in St Annes court?
    The one with the interesting neighbours.

  22. Clarissa - I wasn't really counting; if they'd told me 50 I'd have believed them.

    Jim: no, I don't remember that shop. I did visit FP in Denmark st once or twice.