Where are my books? — Createspace delays

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I just wanted to place an update here on the availability of my new book Meno-What? A Memoir. As you may have read in one of my earlier posts about The Sticky Royalty issues I’m having with Createspace http://wp.me/p3UZVY-Ku, I had requested that if any of you here wished to purchase a paperback copy, to please do so from the link I’d attach on my Meno-What? page. When I first published the ebook version in early June, I downloaded the paperback version with Createspace and ordered proof copies for myself to proofread before I hit publish for paperback. Normally the proofs should arrive within a week. Well today is July7th and as some of you have been questioning me about purchasing the paperback, I felt as though I should keep you abreast of why it is not yet available. menowhat thumbnail 100x150_72dpi I have sent numerous emails to Createspace inquiring as to the status of my book delivery. The first few emails I received were very generic, stating my order has been shipped—not very informative. Then I finally got a response that my order would be received by June 27th. Although I wasn’t thrilled about waiting seventeen days, I had no choice. Then it was the weekend and then it came Canada Day, July 1st and still no books. I emailed them again on July 2nd. That time I stated that surely when you send a package you receive a tracking number, and I kindly requested somebody should get on top of that tracking number and see where my books are. The next day I received another email, included in that email was a tracking number from the U.S. I spent over an hour trying to track that number and as I am Canadian, that U.S. tracking number was useless to me. I WAS FURIOUS by that point. After finding that tracking number was useless to me, I wrote this back again:

Well, another day has passed and the mailman has come and gone. This Monday will mark almost ONE MONTH since I have ordered my proof copies of my new book Meno-What? A Memoir, in order to approve and publish. You guys have sent me responses saying it’s been sent, several times. Then you emailed me a tracking number, which has no use to me because I can’t track it anywhere. You are the sender; you should have a means to track what you send with the number.

After numerous requests asking me where the paper back is, others have now downloaded the ebook and once again I will have nobody to purchase these books because they will be buying it on Amazon, just as what happened with my first book — if this one ever gets published. This leaves my money sitting in YOUR account now for almost 7 months that will never surpass $100 now because the book has been out now for almost a month with no paper edition and the thrill has worn off for the eager waiters.

I am asking you to find out where those books are, or have them resent because they sure aren’t here. I am also asking you to please release my royalties in all fairness due to this huge delay. Your attention in this matter is greatly appreciated.

Their reply:

Hello Deborah,

Thank you for taking the time to contact CreateSpace support today. I am very sorry to hear that you have still not received your order. Given the length of time that has elapsed, it appears that the package was lost in transit. Because of this issue, I created order #XXXX to replace your defective book copy. This package is expected to be delivered by Wednesday, July 9 to the following address: .. . . . . Please keep this e-mail for your records as your replacement order number, listed above, will not be included in the Purchase History within your account. If the original package arrives before the replacement, please keep both shipments with our compliments. Once again, I apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate the time you took to contact us. As always, if you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us again. Best regards,

Really? Funny how my books should now be here in three business days! I particularly liked the kicker, if I receive the first order, I can keep it too. How quaint.

It is so frustrating as an author to not have direct communication when dealing with publishing issues. Waiting hours or days for an email response is just so frustrating, but our hands are tied. And, notice how there was still NO mention of releasing my royalties.

So that’s my update. Once again, I appreciate the interest and the questions from my readers about the option to purchase the paperback edition of Meno-What? As soon as I receive it (crossing fingers it appears by July 9th), I will post the link here to inform you of its availability and I will add the ‘buy’ link on my Meno-What? page. From what I remember of the procedure when I published my first book, Conflicted Hearts, the book is available solely on Createspace for about two to three days and then it gets linked to the ebook version on Amazon.com and that is where people tend to purchase from because it is already conveniently available right there without having to go to Createspace, even though it is always still available there. One thing I did notice though, is that the shipping charges seem to be cheaper from Createspace than they are on Amazon. Why? I’m not sure.

Have any of you had any crazy issues in your publishing processes?

 

25 thoughts on “Where are my books? — Createspace delays

  1. Oh, Debby, how frustrating. In reading this I really think it unfair of Createspace to withhold your royalties. Package lost in transit? So, how come you have to pay for their mistake? Did they expect you to send back the first order? No wonder you’re angry. When i read the e-book version of Meno-What? I didn’t notice any copy errors but I understand how you want to make certain that the paperback is perfectly bound and looks professional in every way. Anyway, I hope that you get it on the 9th.

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    1. Thanks a lot Carol. And thanks for giving me good news that you saw no copy errors, yay! I know I read my books several times even after editing revisions and proof reading is done, so I know copy-wise I’ve done my best; but because I’m technically challenged in the formatting department I don’t like to put all my faith in a formatter or Createspace for that matter in binding and layout. I feel more at peace if I find error myself and rectify than finding out from someone else that words were cut off the page, etc. 🙂

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  2. I’m not a writer, so I’m not concerned, but after I’ve read your post, I do believe it’s kinda “le parcours du combattant” to get to have a book published… bon courage & bonne chance! ❤

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  3. Just so frustrating when they only address the bit of your email that they want to, ignore the rest – and then say ‘is there anything else I can help you with?’
    I think I detailed last time you had this issue the fun of dealing with Createspace from overseas – if I order via my Createspace author account, my books take up to 3 months to arrive and I get less than a dollar profit.
    If I order paperbacks on the Amazon UK site I get them in about 2 days, and because of the enforced discounting, I’m buying them cheap and selling them at full price face-to-face for about $3 profit plus my cents from Createspace.
    Now where is the logic in all of that?.

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      1. No, not the author discount, just that Amazon discounts the book (without asking) so I just buy them like any customer and re-sell directly to people who don’t buy online.

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    1. Hi again Deb. Your comment got me curious, so I emailed Amazon. I am attaching a response I got from them when I asked why authors can’t buy their own books from Amazon at a discounted price. Here is their reply:

      I’m sorry we currently don’t have an offer that allows authors to purchase the books with a discount. While we do offer discounts on hundreds of thousands of items, there are some products we’re unable to offer below list price.

      But I must say that this is good idea so I made sure that it will reach the appropriate people in our company.

      We’re currently working on improving our systems and selection to provide good shopping experience to our Customers. We’ll definitely consider your feedback as we plan further improvements.

      Strong customer feedback like yours helps us continue to improve the selection and service we provide.

      I hope you’ll be able to take advantage of our discounts on your next visit to our store.

      We hope to see you again soon.

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      1. It does seem weird, doesn’t it? Authors can always buy discounted books from trad publishers – can’t believe this has really passed Amazon by!

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  4. One nice thing about having a publisher who doesn’t live too far from me. I know their phone number and can drive over there if I have to. Sorry this has become so complicated and that you are getting lousy service. May the book show up today.

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    1. Thanks for you wish . . . IT Did! And yes, self publishing can be quite frustrating, trying to write and look after the business end, but I am plowing through. 🙂

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