Rediscovered: The Rogue’s Gallery Expands; or, A Mystery Solved

You know how bizarre squiggly autographs drive Kevin Cook into a berserk and bemused frenzy?

And do you remember how John D. Haefele presented a John Hancock from horror writer Karl Edward Wagner for that day when we featured a hotshot gallery of signatures all by three-named writers?

None of us could dope out what the word was just above the date — my best guess was October.

Just got an email in from Ramsey Campbell, who says: “In case nobody has identified it, the word above the date in the inscription is Peter Straub’s signature.”

Okay, I’m willing to take Ramsey’s word for it. If  I squint really hard I guess I can see “Peter Straub” in the squiggle — and it is just below his credit line.

Obviously none of our core autograph group are big Straub collectors. Obviously we were thinking Wagner signed above his name, then added the little inscription for Eric.

But no. Wagner blank-signed, Straub did more of a flourish — and today Haefele has that much more of a collector’s item.

Does having the two-named (or one-named, or whatever it is) auto from Straub destroy the purity of that tour de force three-named gallery? Hey, maybe. I leave it to the historians.

And now I wait for a message from Kevin Cook. I’m guessing he’s just been handed a squiggle that more than wrestles Kent Harrington’s auto, the presiding champion, to the ground.

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