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Mail ordering books

I ordered two poetry books from out of country. One because local distribution doesn’t interact with there and the other because I prefer to order from the publisher direct or the author direct so there are as few middlemen as possible and the most cash going to the producers rather than the distributers.

Apart from Coach House who zips a book off asap, most book sellers seem to take their sweet time. Fine, even I do. I sold a book online but was away that week so it wasn’t popped in the mail the next day like usual.

But this one (unnamed) book seller took the money from my account 5 weeks ago and has sent no notice of mailing it and gave no replied to my email inquiring on the order after a month passed. Small operation. Could slip thru cracks, key people could be sick, whatever. Still books being published are about getting the books to other hands and I’m getting cranky waiting.

The second book I tried to order from the publisher but they deal only thru an indie book store. Fair enough. I have to become a member to buy from them online. That was an unnecessarily complex process but that’s a matter of the web designer. They sell digital versions of the book I want but not outside of Australia. They have to send paper copies worldwide. Oddly last century in a way but fine.

Bad news: three weeks pass.
Good new: a book does come.
Bad news: it’s the wrong book.
Good news: there’s a receipt listing the right book title and a return policy.
Bad news: it a 14-day return policy.

Now what. It’s a fine book I’m sure, except I bought the other one because I started to read it and had to return it to the friend who lives out of town. I was kinda committed to the finish that one. I can’t afford to shell out another $35 and hope to get sent the right one. I don’t want them to incur the cost of sending me a free second book for their mistake. I still want book which is not readily available except thru them.

We order things-not-books and they come from the U.S., from Japan, from England and zip, within 3 days or so, a week tops and voila.

Moo cards gave me a 3 week estimate and like Scotty, they tend to engineer to pleasing timelines and it arrived in time for writers Fest. That’s 11 days from being manufactured to my door. That’s service and gratifying. And it isn’t really rocket science, just being organized.

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One Response

  1. At 6 weeks with still no reply to my 3 inquiries, my money is returned.

    I tried thru ABEBooks.

    2 weeks later I have my order in hand.

    PearlMay 27, 2011 @ 2:20 pm

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