the auction’s (mostly) over, now what?

If the magic of scheduled posts has worked properly, this has posted at 4:01 p.m. Eastern time on Sunday, May 3, 2015, and Con or Bust’s 2015 auction is now over—except for items that had last-minute bids.

(Reminder: if bidding is still live on something, do not wait until the last second to bid. While I have improved the performance of this website considerably since last year, if your comment doesn’t go through I can’t do anything about it, because in order to be fair and transparent, the timestamp of posted comments is the only thing that counts. Give yourself the margin that the new rules allow.)

Is Bidding Over? Did I Win?

This year, bidding was extended for last-minute bids, so here’s a refresher on whether the bidding on any specific item is over yet:

Was a valid bid on an item posted with a timestamp from 3:50 and 4:00 p.m. today? A valid bid is higher than the last one.

  • No.
    • If the last valid bid on an item was timestamped 3:49 p.m. or earlier, then that bid is automatically the winner.
  • Yes.
    • If a valid bid was timestamped 3:50 p.m., 4:00 p.m., or any time in-between, then bidding on that item is automatically extended until 4:10 p.m.
    • Next, either:
      • no further bids are received timestamped on or before 4:10 p.m., and therefore bidding is over at 4:10 p.m. and the last high bid wins; or,
      • another bid is timestamped on or before 4:10 p.m., and bidding continues until 4:20 p.m. Repeat as necessary.

The extending and closing of bidding is automatic and the determinations are purely mechanical; no mod ruling is required.

If you can’t quite remember what you bid on, you can either search for the name you would have commented under in the sidebar, or you can comment here using the same email address you would have used for bidding and we will email you when the spreadsheet is sorted out.

I Won; What Do I Do Now?

Congratulations and thanks very much! You can pay with a PayPal account or a credit card (after you click the orange button below, click “Continue” on the left side of the screen, above the credit card logos). On the “review your donation” screen, please click “Add special instructions to the seller” and state what auction item or items this is for. (It’s fine to aggregate payments for multiple auctions. No-one’s ever run out of room, but if you do, just email with the information.)

Other things that should go in the “special instructions” field: (1) if your email address is different from the one you used to comment; (2) if you DON’T want your PayPal mailing address to be used to ship your item to.

Once you’ve paid, you will get an email acknowledgment of your payment and we will notify your seller.

I Offered Something for Auction; What Do I Do Now?

Thank you for offering something! Just wait until you get email from, letting you know that your winner has paid and providing you with their contact information. Then make whatever arrangements are necessary!

If you can’t quite remember all the things you offered, use the search or the index to find any one post, and then click on your name next to “Posted by” to see all the posts you’ve made.

Finally, I mention this only because some people have asked if they could do it in past years: if bidding was vigorous, you may, where practical and in your sole discretion, offer additional items to people with the high losing bids or who got their bids in late. But that would be an entirely optional exercise of extreme generosity on your part—which means, bidders, don’t importune or I will frown disapprovingly at you over the Internet.

I Need Help!

Comment here or email It is very important to me that everyone who participates in the auction be satisfied that they were treated fairly, and I want to hear about any concerns or problems.


  1. If I won something that needs a note to the offerer (ex name for personalization), should I leave that in a comment on the post, put it in the paypal note, something else?

  2. PayPal note is easiest, thanks!

  3. What if you won something that needs to be shipped internationally and the seller has said the buyer will need to pitch in or pay for postage? How do we know how much to add to our payment?

  4. Easiest to comment at the relevant auction posts or send an email ( ) to ask about it! Thanks.

  5. I’m so confused I don’t know if I won or not it says I was the last bidder on the morganville one but I’ve got nothing to say I won or not

  6. Katie Savidge, winners are determined automatically, but I’ve checked our records and have confirmed that you have indeed won Rachel Caine’s The Morganville Vampires Superfan Swag-Bag.

  7. Katie Savidge, the volume of bids is such that we do not post confirmation emails on every auction, because it’s all based on timestamps, but we’re happy to confirm winners if people ask: and yes, you won the Morganville auction.

  8. (Yoon: jinx!)

  9. (Kate: haha, yeah.)

  10. Literally jumps for joy!

  11. Me again so I just made my donation for my morganviille goodies but I didn’t see anything about additional information for the seller help if its easier you could email me

  12. Kate Savidge: I’ll be processing your payment and contacting the seller shortly. These are all processed by hand so sometimes there’s a bit of a delay. Sorry about that, and thanks for being in touch. (I’ve also emailed this information to you for your convenience.)

  13. Hi, i bid on the Joe Hill NOS4A2 and was checking to see if i had indeed won and if i needed to pay now or if i could do it on thursday (biweekly pay is not my friend). Thanks and really great cause!

  14. Phillip Bolin: You did indeed win that auction. As for payment timing, let me check with Kate Nepveu and have her get back to you when she’s available.

  15. Philip Bolin: I’ve heard back from Kate Nepveu and paying on Thursday is fine. Thanks for checking with us!

  16. Hi there, can I please get an email on what I owe etc. I think I’ve won two items but the system seems to be playing up for me. My email is Thank you! :)

  17. B L Draper, email sent.

  18. Thanks mobs, Kate. :)

  19. Hi, Kate!

    I’ve not heard anything from or about the person who won my auction item. So I wanted to make sure I’d left you the correct email address. It’s the one on this form.


    Kit (Katharine) Kerr

  20. Sending you email!

  21. Hi there, I’m happy to say the book I bought arrived today – all the way to Aus – and I’m thrilled, so thank you! However the other item I bought hasn’t been received yet by the person I bought it for, and she’s in the US. How can we check the status of items we’ve bought?

  22. Belinda, sending you email!

  23. Hi I offered a book, and it had one bid, but I never heard anything about the winner:

    What should I do?

  24. Elusis, I’ve never heard from your winner, but checking my spreadsheet I see I somehow missed the “second message from another of my emails” step, so (1) thanks for letting me know and (2) let me do that now!

This is an archive view of Con or Bust's 2013-2016 auctions and posts. For the 2017 auction, to request assistance, and other current information, please see Con or Bust's main site.