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Eric: Potentially the most humiliating auction of my life. Also, *cowboy hat.*

The eBay Auction Extravaganza 2007 continues to go fantastically, with everything except the d20 version of the Star Wars Roleplaying Game getting at least one bid so far. This is exciting stuff, and I appreciate each and everyone of you. I also find it vaguely amusing that the only item to get no bids to date is probably the one that has had the most advertising and mass marketing, from the largest RPG company. Of course, given the fantastic bidding war on Amber Diceless Roleplaying -- arguably the opposite side of the coin -- perhaps that is to be expected.

And, because folks here have excellent taste, both Wonder Woman: A Complete History and Monte Cook's Arcana Unearthed were bought now via Buy it Now for Now-Purchasing-Goodness all around. Those will both be shipped out later today via everyone's friend "Priority Mail." This is seriously cool stuff.

Which brings us today's auction. And yes, it's in the singular. We're just offering one new auction today. As promised (or threatened) yesterday, this is an attempt to... well, offer up one personalized item. One piece of Eric Burns je ne sais quoi, that's more than just "something Eric had on his bookshelf that now he's selling to make up budgetary shortfalls."

Which, to be honest, isn't easy to do. I mean, most of you know me because I'm a blogger. And blogging doesn't produce many... tangible goods. I don't have a file drawer full of blog manuscripts, carefully inked out in illegible scrawl, with line marks and bits of poetry and occasional rude drawings in the margins. I don't have reams of original artwork on bristol board or cardstock or white paper. I don't have much that screams Eric Burns that I'd be willing to sell (or that anyone sane would be willing to buy.)

But... we came up with something. It's a special offer. And it will be pretty old one of a kind.

You see, back in 2002 before Websnark had begun, I was one of the principal authors of Sidewinder: Wild West Adventures, a d20 western role playing game which took the then-newly opened d20/OGL Standard Reference Document and gave it a hickory smoked flavor. The book was highly critically acclaimed, including really nice words by Kenneth Hite, which is as highly acclaimed as you got in those days. And it was nominated for the Best d20 Game ENnie,

I'm seriously proud of Sidewinder. I think it was a great product for its time. I think a lot of it stands up really well five years later. And I'd be pushing it hard if... well, Black Dog Games (and designer Geoff Spakes) hadn't reworked it into Sidewinder: Recoiled a couple of years later. Recoiled takes Sidewinder and reapplies it to the d20 Modern system -- a vast improvement that makes character creation and development greatly improved. Recoiled actually won the Gold ENnie its year. It's a fantastic game and it deserves notice.

I don't talk about Recoiled much. I'm listed as a "contributing author," but my contributions were pretty much limited to "a big chunk of the stuff I did for Sidewinder: Wild West Adventures, including lots of stuff I wrote in the voice of Bat Masterson -- only a good amount of it was rewritten to 'western it up,' which meant that instead of the cool, urbane sportswriter of the 20's whose own Gun Fighters of the Western Frontier was extensively quoted (letting us put Bat's name in the author's credits), we had someone who sounded kind of... well, "prospectory." Less James Arness, more Ken Curtis, in other words.

James Arness. Ken Curtis. Jesus, people, Gunsmoke. It ran twenty seasons on CBS. I-- oh, never mind.

Anyway. I'm going to think that way because I have an ego like everyone else does, but that doesn't change the fact that if you want to do actual historical Western roleplaying, you should buy Sidewinder: Recoiled. It's a damn good game -- better than the one I'm auctioning.

But. This is meant to be a personalized auction, and that's what we're offering here. This is the Websnark edition of Sidewinder: Wild West Adventures. And that's very different indeed!

Well, sort of.

What you get is one of my Author's Copies of Sidewinder: Wild West Adventures. Furthermore -- I will sign that copy. And personalize it to you however you want... well, within the limits of good taste and space on the inside front cover. Oh, this might mean the front cover is a bit more wrinkled, too, since I have to open it up to do this.

Now, you're sitting there, and you're thinking "so what. A signature we'll barely be able to read and he'll write my name? Big freaking deal, blogger boy." And I agree. This would be the lamest auction ever to be auctioned if that was the deal.

But there is more. Much much mo-- well, there's more.

You see... in addition to the signature... in addition to the personalizing elements... I will include a never before seen, never before attempted, never before composed unique sketch of Websnark icon Snarky himself!

Wearing a cowboy hat.

That's right. I'm going to draw Snarky wearing a cowboy hat on the inside front cover of this book.

And it's going to be terrible.

Seriously, I'm going to do my best. I'm going to take my time and draw it just as best as I possibly can. But I'm a hideously bad artist, and I'm not going to do any practice runs. And I've never actually drawn Snarky. I've also never drawn a cowboy hat. This is going to look like something a developmentally disabled five year old with poor motor control would draw.

But I'll at least try to make it cute.

So. My ENnie Nominated d20 game. My signature. Personalized however you wish. And my first ever attempt to draw our mascot Snarkasaurus. Wearing a cowboy hat to boot.

That's the auction you'll find here.

You will note, the opening bid is ninety nine cents. I do not overestimate the collectablity of this piece.

Mostly, I figure this will be fun. Someone out there will probably want this for a few bucks. And it's certainly going to be unique, and we might as well have a good time here in the auction. And this is definitely a "personal piece."

So, bid early, bid often, keep an eye on the other auctions and let's see where we go with this.

And don't forget... the drawing will be terrible.

So don't claim I lied, later on.

Posted by Eric Burns-White at March 23, 2007 12:55 PM

Comments

Comment from: J. Channing Wells [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 23, 2007 1:34 PM

So if the drawing instead turns out to be awesome, can we ask for our money back? ;)

Comment from: Eric Burns [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 23, 2007 1:42 PM

I should think. There is such a thing as false advertising, you know.

Comment from: Paul Gadzikowski [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 23, 2007 2:18 PM

James Arness. Ken Curtis. Jesus, people, Gunsmoke. It ran twenty seasons on CBS. I-- oh, never mind.

I got yer back, pard.

Comment from: Eric Burns [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 23, 2007 2:26 PM

It's you and me against the world, Paul.

*pause*

I call Festus. He got the best lines.

Comment from: Robotech_Master [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 23, 2007 3:04 PM

The William Conrad radio show is what will always be Gunsmoke to me.

"Matt Dillon, United States Marshall. The first man they look for, and the last they want to meet. It's a chancy job, and it makes a man watchful. And a little lonely."

I'm a little scared I can remember that monologue so well after all this time.

Comment from: 32_footsteps [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 23, 2007 6:02 PM

"I don't have much that screams Eric Burns that I'd be willing to sell (or that anyone sane would be willing to buy.)"

So, no thong sales? Damn.

Comment from: dementstudio [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 23, 2007 6:07 PM

For the record I'm bidding on what seems to be the ONLY way I can buy "Eric Burns Lit" in bound form. What I REALLY want is a POD (or better yet mass market publisher) copy of a certain hard sci-fi novel with webcomic-artists names for planetary systems from a NaNoWriMo in the not so distant past...

...I'm also bidding for the terrible snarky art. It's as close as I can come to buying a tasty tasty biscuit. I'll even promise not to return it if its not terrible.

Comment from: kirabug [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 23, 2007 8:36 PM

Your terrible drawing is already out of my price range. Good job on the reverse psychology! ;)

Comment from: Tyck [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 24, 2007 4:44 AM

I want the pulp novel and the bedtime story, personally. And now I'm off to consider registering an eBay account so I can go bid on the Cockfighting Seisure Monsters book (which reminds me I should try and find a good price on BESM 3rd.)

Comment from: masque12 [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 24, 2007 9:21 AM

... everything except the d20 version of the Star Wars Roleplaying Game getting at least one bid so far. I also find it vaguely amusing that the only item to get no bids to date is probably the one that has had the most advertising and mass marketing, from the largest RPG company.

D20 Star Wars? I have no idea what you're talking about. There was only ever a Star Wars RPG made by West End Games, just like there was never any movies other than Episodes IV-VI, and no one ever went back and screwed them up with a bunch of CGI.

Now, if anyone wants me, I'll be in the corner, wearing the "Han Shot First" t-shirt and repeating the above paragraph to myself over and over while rocking ever so gently.

Comment from: Doug Wykstra [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 24, 2007 2:28 PM

Had you considered putting another snark topic up for auction like you did with Child's Play a few years back? That would probably sell pretty well too. Or do you only compromise your artistic endeavors for magnanimous causes? ;)

Comment from: Eric Burns [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 24, 2007 2:46 PM

Doug -- the latter. I wouldn't feel right auctioning off a topic and pocketing the money.

At some point when my own finances are more secure, I intend to auction off a topic to benefit the Cartoon Art Museum, though.

Comment from: dementstudio [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at March 30, 2007 1:39 PM

I realize its guache to gloat...but I must admit that I did the "happy dance" while chanting "I WON!" "I WON!!" "I WON!!!" about a dozen times in my living room when I finally got home to see the results.

My wife and my cat both think I've lost my mind.

The accuracies of potential mental misplacement not withstanding, I'm STOKED.

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