For all my author friends and aspiring authors out there…

Business and branding 101… a profanity-laced rant.

If a supplier is consistently giving you problems, not following through, and generally dropping the ball when there are other suppliers out there that you could be using with minimal hassle or effort on your part, WHY THE FUCK WOULD YOU KEEP USING THEM?

Case in point, the daily parade of ‘KDP print on demand has fucked me over’ posts on my Facebook feed. (I will likely go on a profanity-laced rant about Facebook’s hinky bullshit at a later date.)

Guys. This isn’t rocket science.

STOP USING THEM.

Their printing is shit. Their shipping is shit. Their distribution channels are shit, and all they do is give you a bunch of shit!

Save yourself the aggravation and switch to a more reliable print on demand service. They’re out there. Believe me. I am with one.

Like, I am to the point that I am about to put together a fucking BINGO card of KDP POD complaints and start handing them out to other authors so we can play.

  1. They say my cover is the wrong size when it is right according to the standards they demand.

  2. They keep kicking back my interior files for the same reason – the margins are wrong when it’s their template I’m using!

  3. I ordered my books and they came through packed shitty and demolished with bent covers and corners.

  4. The books I ordered are a fucked up trim size. Some taller than others, some with the spines sticking out further than others when pushed to the back of the shelf like some people like to do.

  5. I can only order X amount of my books and then I have to put in a separate order to get the rest.

  6. I ordered cartons of my books after updating the cover and interior files and one third to half of the carton were the old books.

  7. I ordered books over a month in advance of my signing but they haven’t shipped yet and the signing is next week. I don’t know if they’re going to make it in time.

  8. The books I got, the covers are all fucked up, maybe some of them or maybe all of them, but the colors are washed out or too dark and they look just awful…

I can keep going if you want.

My point is, I didn’t give KDP the chance to fuck me over. I got my shit straight, shelled out for my own ISBN’s (which I should have had in the first place) took my happy ass to another supplier and not only have I had NONE of the aforementioned problems I expanded the distribution of my paperbacks by leaps and bounds and am making more money than I ever was with Createspace.

In fact, the very first problem I had with that supplier was today and I digress, but this is how it all went down:

I ordered 32 books last week. Today a box with 28 of them arrived, but the second box that showed as having shipped out with 4 of the books didn’t. I was confused when I opened the carton because it could easily fit the 4 missing books which I received a notification from the shipper that they would be arriving on Wednesday. (It’s Friday as I type this for reference.)

I call my supplier, the TL;DR version of the convo that ensued goes like this:

Me: Whaddafux?

Them: So sorry, the quality of the 4 missing books was shit and rather than hold up your whole order, we shipped the bulk of them out, reprinted the 4 shitty books and they didn’t ship out until a day or two later. Please forgive us for the inconvenience. 

Me: Whhhhhat? You mean you didn’t want to ship me inferior product so you didn’t?

Them: Yes, that’s right. 

Me: I love you. 

Them: We love you, too. 

To continue this love fest I am having over here, I love a lot of you, and so here’s a little tough love from me to you – either do something about your KDP Print On Demand problems or stop complaining. The excuses are going to get real old for your readers fast. They may have been born at night but they weren’t born last night. They know we got other options.

Stop fucking around with Amazon when they keep dicking you over with sub-par service, and with not paying you what you’re owed on time with your ebook royalties on time. With stripping you of page reads in KU when you didn’t do anything wrong to deserve it (and yet, you stay exclusive to them in KU, I don’t get that shit at all.)

Bottom line – all we are doing by saying ‘oh, well’ and by not taking ourselves elsewhere to platforms and readerships willing to do the work and pay us for our work is we’re just letting Amazon get away with their shitty craptastic ways.

If Amazon were a man, or woman, or any kind of significant other – would you let them do this to you?

Think about that, and if you’re ready to break up with the print on demand side of things and want some guidance on other options – just shoot me an email. I’ll do what I can to help.

Whatever you do? Do better for yourself and your readers.

One Comment

  1. Jim

    Well said. I have been buying less of the books I read from Amazon and more from Smashwords. I dropped KU ages ago because I was returning so many books unread

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