No reply from Jeff Bezos.
The Amazon debacle has only grown worse. Amazon customers continue to have problems with the Kindle file and book reviewers are raving mad. They are blasting the Mischief Under the Mistletoe authors at an alarming rate. Below is the letter from Amazon taking responsibility for their mistake. Of course this was before they sent thousands of emails placing the blame on the publisher.
This email from Amazon came in on 11/18/2015, the day after the book went live. We also received a followup email, that same day, stating the problem was corrected. That was far from the truth and a joke, though we never laughed. The files were never pushed out to Kindles as we were told. Some lucky buyers (that’s another joke) were able to download an updated version via their Amazon account. Others still don’t have the correct file even though they’ve returned it and downloaded the file again. Other buyers called Amazon direct, had the correct file pushed to their Kindle but when they close the book it reverts back to the original “wrong” file.
Also note: We were not given a single individual to contact. Our account was enabled for phone contact so they could call us if we requested it. Boy did we request. Several nice customer service specialists listened while we explained about Amazon’s screw up. No one could help us.
Here are my emails to Jeff Bezos in order (the image is difficult to read so I’ve typed them below):
“Mr. Bezos, I am currently part of a box set with 19 authors and the set released today with over 8 thousand pre-orders (Mischief Under the Mistletoe) The correct ebook file was uploaded over a month ago well before the ten-day requirement. The 8k pre-orders that went out today sent the wrong file. This has essentially killed the book which has $2,000 worth of advertising going out this week. Here is a link to the set and the reviews which are destroying the authors involved. http://www.amazon.com/Mischief-Under-Mistletoe-Holiday-Unwrapped-ebook/dp/B0147H31BG/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top?ie=UTF8 Technical glitches happen all the time. My husband was the technical coordinator for a school district before he retired and I know how many sleepless nights he had. I would be devastated but forgiving because these things happen. Unfortunately, this is not the first time and it happened to one of the authors in the set, two months ago. We’ve also heard from other authors offering their support and we’re hearing again and again that this is a repeated problem. The bad reviews, because Amazon sent the wrong file, are not being removed and I, as someone who ordered the book, still have a dummy file and it has not been fixed. Current orders and receiving the correct file. I won’t even go into the tears 19 authors have shed today. Life goes on and there are so many more horrible things happening in this world. I’ve sent this email so maybe this can be avoided in the future and whatever glitch in Amazon’s system can be fixed. Sincerely, Suzie Ivy, writing as Holly S. Roberts”
The file has been fixed on Amazon’s end and emails sent to people who did not return the book (I have not received one). Unfortunately, the email blames the publisher and says the publisher fixed the problem. This is untrue and Amazon does not take responsibility. Also, the one star reviews because of Amazon’s mistake calling the authors cheats and so on are still on the book’s Amazon page. Is there anything that can be done? I know from past experience that these reviews can be removed.”
“Mr Bezos, I received an email from a reader this morning, 5 days after “Mischief Under The Mistletoe” released, that her copy is reverting to the incorrect “place holder file” download that Amazon inadvertently sent to 8k plus readers. Amazon admitted their mistake to us in an email and said the problem was fixed. That was the first day. It was not. Amazon began notifying buyers on the 3rd day and said the publisher had fixed the problem. The publisher had no problem but Amazon pushed it to us. Our advertisers dropped us due to poor reviews that Amazon has not removed and all poor reviews site that customers received one book when promised 19. Those reviews are still adding to the nightmare that has been this book release. I’m to the point that I’m willing to beg for help. We do not know what to do or who to turn to. We need: -The correct file in the hands of readers who advanced ordered the book -All reviews stating they received one book when promised 19 removed (calling the authors cheats and so on) -Someone who will give us the absolute truth even if it’s not something we wish to hear -Anything that will help us at this point Sincerely, Suzie Ivy writing as Holly S. Roberts”
In all fairness, the last email was sent Sunday.
I’m fairly certain it won’t matter, though. I expect the same non-reply I received from the first two. Many authors in the box-set believe we need to move on because we can’t fight Amazon.
What say you?
And just a hint; I’ve never given up on anything in my life!
Five ways iBooks could knock Kindle out of the ring:
1) iOS needs to completely stop compatibility with the Kindle Reading app – Many Kindle readers use the Kindle app to read on iOS (iPhone, iPad, etc.) devices. They buy their books from Amazon which generates no sales revenue for Apple and places iBooks second in the book marketplace. Why is second place good enough?
I love this post by 9to5Mac.com He’s an avid Mac fan who buys his books via Amazon and reads them on his Apple device using the Kindle app.
2) Match book – You’ll here screaming when you put #1 into action. Here’s the solution: When I purchased my Amazon Echo, Amazon matched my iTunes’ music library (approx. 4,000 songs). I simply uploaded my iTunes content to Amazon’s Music app and my iTunes music was transferred/matched to Amazon and accessible via the app and my Echo. If Amazon can match iTunes music, iBooks can do this with Kindle ebooks.
3) New eBookstore Platform – iTunes is great for music but guess what?
Readers are an entirely different breed of consumer and one size does not fit all.
Create a reader friendly iBook platform that would be nothing like the iTunes music store. Your current iBookstore is difficult for readers to navigate. Amazon’s store is conductive to a happy reader experience while their music app is very similar to iTunes. Why does Amazon emulate iTunes for music? Because iTunes is great. FOR MUSIC. Wake up and smell the reader perspective iBooks; we will love you for it.
4) Offer Kindle/mobi download – Yes, I know this goes against everything Apple stands for and seriously, I doubt you will do it. I see Kobo or even Barnes and Noble jumping into this fight and delivering a counter punch to Amazon by offering epub and mobi downloads at their store. All Romance eBooks/Omni Lit sends your download directly to your Kindle when you purchase an eBook mobi file. It’s easy and hassle free once set up.
5) Email book suggestions to your readers – Use Apple account emails and allow us to sign up for daily or weekly specials. Harper Collins purchased The Midlist because they see the need for a daily newsletter that features eBook deals. As a reader, I personally enjoy Bookbub and The Fussy Librarian. Please offer me email spotlights about iBook bestsellers and most of all discounted books so I can experience new authors. Free or heavily discounted is what it usually takes for me to read someone new. If I enjoy the author, I have no problem paying a higher price for their books.
Do you have an idea for iBooks? I would love to hear from you and possibly share you comments with my iBooks rep.
Amazon removed thousands of books from their site yesterday.
Books were removed because of three keywords located in the title’s information page in the keywords section: Free, Bestseller and Kindle. It didn’t matter if your book was free, an Amazon bestseller, or a Kindle eBook; Amazon pulled the plug.
Approximately two weeks ago, authors received notices from Amazon giving them five days to comply with Amazon’s Terms of Service (TOS). If you’ve ever looked at Amazon’s TOS you might understand why the biggest problem was identifying words that Amazon now claims are a no no. Many authors missed “Kindle” in the long boring diatribe known as TOS and suffered the consequences. Yesterday, November 4th, also known as National Stress Awareness Day was Amazon’s We Removed Your Book Day.
Maybe it’s only me who sees the humor in all the stress this entailed.
Authors suffered overwhelmingly and relived the tragedy online in many writer’s groups. I don’t have the exact numbers but I’m sure many were hospitalized or even died as a result of having their books removed and their sales plummet. When I have a casualty list, I’ll update this post. Please send me a death certificate to accompany all claims of heart attack, stroke, or choking resulting in death so I’m not accused of exaggeration.
I have decided to take a stress-free approach at least as far as Suzie Ivy is concerned. Bad Luck Cadet & Officer, The Forever Team and The Forever Delinquent are no longer for sale on Amazon. You heard me… nope, nada, zilch, nanny nanny poo poo.
But, have no fear Kindle users (we’ll now call this the dirty, K-word) my books are available in mobi edition on such sites as Smashwords, Chat eBooks and Gumroad (my buy direct store). And if you own an Apple device, Nook, or Kobo reader, you will find my books available at their stores because they play nice with others. The paperbacks will still be carried by Amazon for a limited time. That change is coming soon, though.
You might be asking if I’m really taking a bite out of Amazon by removing my books? Honestly, it won’t even be a blip on their quirky, ever-changing radar. But, I feel better and that’s what counts. I’m cutting my dependency on Amazon by removing books and ordering books and goods through other retailers. In my opinion, K-word Unlimited is the worst tragedy to happen to authors since the last book burning, but, that’s a whole other blog post, Air For Sale.
Whether you’re with me or against me; I’d love to hear your comments.
Months ago, my husband and I were watching a movie when I came unglued over a scene where the police made a woman wait 48 hours before reporting her friend missing. This is total BS and is harmful to the public. My dissing an incorrect police procedure from Hollywood is a common occurrence in my house but I don’t usually jump out of my chair and scream at the television. My poor husband almost had a heart attack.
A few days ago, I was reading a really good romantic thriller and ran across the same situation. I marched downstairs, Nook in hand, and read the passage to my husband. He was working on his fantasy football draft. I must give him credit because he listened patiently to what I had to say. When I finished, he asked, “Didn’t that recently upset you in a movie we watched?”
So Authors! Get your facts straight. The 48 hour rule is not just a myth, it’s dangerous to the people who read your books and believe you know what you’re talking about.
As a detective, a woman in my community waited 48 hours to inform the police that her son was missing. I helped dig his burned body from a shallow grave. This is why I scream and stomp my feet. If you write mystery, thrillers, police procedural, the last thing you want to do is spread false information that could possibly do more harm than good.
48 HOURS IS A DANGEROUS MYTH!
So let’s take a look at the truth:
- Police take the totality of circumstances into consideration. It’s not against the law for an adult to take a trip and leave without telling anyone however police will always file a report.
- Did the missing person pack clothes, toothbrush, wallet or other essential items? What about their vehicle, is it gone too?
- Was there a family fight? Police can and will place an alert on a vehicle license plate.
- Is this a common occurrence?
- Do you live with the missing person and if not have you checked their home? The police will do what’s called a welfare check. I’ve done my share. Many are for the elderly after out of town relatives call. Several have ended in finding a person dead of natural causes.
- Does the person have special needs; medication, mental or physical disabilities requiring assistance?
- Why do you feel they are missing and endangered?
It should go without saying that any missing child, 18 years of age and younger, is endangered.
Stop the myth and do your job as an author. Research please. Screaming fits in my living room are extremely bad for my husband’s health and my blood pressure.
The Forever Team is available in paperback ($5.99) and eBook (99 cents).
Six months ago The Forever Team released as part of 10-Code Project to raise money for the national Law Enforcement Officer’s Memorial Fund. I don’t have the figures yet but I’m very excited to see how much money we raised. Thank you everyone who purchased a copy.
I worked very hard this past month to make The Forever Team appropriate for age 10+ readers. This means I cleaned up the language and sexual innuendos that made it true to life. The changes don’t effect the story but for the first time, my grandchildren can read a book I’ve written.
As a long-time rottweiler owner, I want you to know this story is very close to my heart. I had just lost my six-year-old Rottie to cancer when I wrote The Forever Team. There were so many tears shed it was hard to see my computer screen at times. I’m hoping there are a few more Detective Jolett books in me because I really want to revisit her world.
New Cover and #FREE through June 6
Bad Luck Cadet & Officer has a new cover and to celebrate, it’s FREE at Amazon through Friday. I really need some reviews on the combined version so if you’ve read both or missed them, please grab a copy of the combined books while they’re free and consider leaving a review, thank you.
I’ve decided against writing another Suzie Ivy adventure. This decision relieves my mind because I’ve always been worried about the victims of crime. Instead, I want to fictionalize some of my adventures and possible use Detective Jolett as my alter ego. We’ll see where these thoughts take me. Right now, my romance writing is keeping me busy.
Buy link: Amazon Kindle
If you’re a member of Kindle Unlimited several of my books are available for you as a free download. Bad Luck Officer & Cadet and writing as Holly S. Roberts: Play, Strike, Kick, Slam, and Crimson Warrior.
Dragons Don’t Forgive is Live
If you read my steamy paranormal books, Dragons Don’t Forgive, the third book in the Fire Chronicles Series releases today too. There are four books planned and I’m hard at work on the final installment. I’m adding an extra dose of humor to this one because Dragons Don’t Forgive is a tad on the heartbreaking side. It does have a happy ending, though so don’t let me turn you away if you’re interested. Just think Gor meets Little House on the Prairie. If that catches your interest you might want to read the series. Dragons Don’t Cry is book I and Dragons Don’t Love is book II.
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00XJTQPKI
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00XJTQPKI
Now I need a vacation! We leave next Monday and I can’t wait!