But two items of news have helped me realise that, in times of trouble, people are still prepared to help.
Ever since the earthquake hit Japan, the seventh largest in recorded history, the images that have come from all aspects of social media have been overwhelming and heartbreaking and you would indeed, have to be made of stone not to feel for the bereaved and the displaced during this time.
I feel like I need to do something to help, and while my means may be limited - I do have several pieces that I will put up for auction in the hope that it raises some money for charity.
AUCTION 1: One of the last remaining copies I have of BACK FROM THE DEAD and signed by 8 of the contributors. Bidding will start at £50 for this book and all blind bids will be emailed to panbookofhorrorstoriesATgmailDOTcom.
AUCTION 2: A letter from editor Herbert van Thal to one of his Pan Horror authors. These letters are very rare and nearly non-existent, so you will have a unique piece of genre heritage. Bidding will start at £30 for this letter and all blind bids will be emailed to panbookofhorrorstoriesATgmailDOTcom
AUCTION 3: Is THE VAMPIRE STORIES OF R CHETWYND HAYES as published by Fedogan and Bremer. It is a slip-cased edition, only 100 of these were done, this is #85 and it is signed by R Chetwynd Hayes, Brian Lumley,Stephen Jones, Les Edwards and Jim Pitts - but what makes this book truly remarkable is that the artists Les Edwards and Jim Pitts have each drawn a one off, unique picture of a vampire inside this book and this is the only time that both artists have done so to my knowledge. Bidding will start at £70 for this book and all blind bids will be emailed to panbookofhorrorstoriesATgmailDOTcom.
Please header your email with 'Japan Auction' and in the body of the email, your name, what auction you will be bidding on and how much your highest bid will be and you will be notified if somebody has bid above you so you can rebid if you wish. The auction will end on the 26th of March and the highest bidder will then be contacted and after funds have been sent, I will then post off the prizes free of charge (worldwide).
I will then post the winners of the items on my blog and post proof that all donated money has been given to my charity of choice, in this case it will be The British Red Cross.
I hope you will bid on these items.
His website can be found here, and a quick check of the site shows that he has added further auctions. Please support him.
The second initiative is Authors for Japan.
As it says on the website:
The auction is LIVE – comments are open and you can start bidding!
To bid, you’ll need to leave a comment (with the amount of your bid) in the relevant comments box.
The auction will close at 8pm on Sunday (the 20th).
At the conclusion of the auction the bidder who has made the highest bid in UK Pounds will be deemed the winner. (Convert currency at xe.com)
Winning bidders will be notified by email and instructed to make their donations to the British Red Cross Japan Tsunami Appeal.
- A frank and fearless 1000 critique from best-selling author Katie Fforde
- An exclusive short story from Miranda Dickinson starring the winning bidder
- Character name in Melissa Hill's next novel
There are 175 lots on the website, so many, many opportunities to a) give generously and b) receive something utterly unique.
If you know of any other literary initiatives for Japan, then please tell me in the comments or by email and I will add to this post.
We can help make a difference, people. Start bidding!