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Thread: Pre-order cancellation--advice, please?

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    Senior Member Involuntarily Committed
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    Pre-order cancellation--advice, please?

    I'm not sure where to post this, but I need to ask the experts for an opinion before I act like a total jerk. Yesterday I emailed 2 publishers to cancel some pre-orders. I got a response from a publisher (not CD, of course) saying "pretty strapped for cash right now" and that he will contact the publisher for an update on the book (that I pre-ordered years ago).

    So here's my question. My gut reaction is that I don't want the book; it's not a question of when it will be published, and, unfortunately, it's not my problem if you're strapped for cash. Am I being unreasonable? I wouldn't be that blunt and rude in my response, but that's the basic sentiment. Thoughts?

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    Administrator Totally Insane Dan Hocker's Avatar
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    Nope, you aren't being unreasonable. Be up front, tell them that you just aren't interested in the book anymore. If they have something else you might want maybe ask to switch your order to that instead, if not push for the refund. If they are still being flaky then you probably need to get forceful. Outside of that there's probably not much you can do, except maybe going to the credit card company.
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    Senior Member Lobotomized Martin's Avatar
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    I agree with Dan. Sounds like you purchased from a third party seller rather than the publisher. If you want a refund then they owe you a refund. Their financial situation is not your concern, they took your money for an item they have not delivered. Whether that is their fault or not is irrelevant.

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    Senior Member 1st Rubber Room Confinement
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    I'm not sure I follow your scenario -- you mention the publisher is contacting the publisher...? -- but, yes, in principle I agree with the others here: If you pre-ordered a book in good faith and its publication has been delayed, you have every right to a refund. Heck, even if it hasn't been delayed...as Martin says, you paid for an item that they don't have in stock nor have delivered (nor even have a sense of the status, given that he had to contact someone for an update), so a refund is in order if desired. You're not a loan company, so any financial problems they may be having is not your concern. Now, they may refuse to do any further business with you, but if that's not a concern, then I'd certainly pursue it.

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    I ordered The Strain from another online store/publisher after it was sold out at Lonely Road. I ordered The Fall from the same store so that I could match my number. Basically, the owner said he would contact Brian for an update, probably hoping that if he could tell me when it would be published, I would not want to cancel.

    We did resolve the issue though. He just needs a couple weeks to make the refund. I feel sort of bad, but I guess that's just how business works.

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    Senior Member Lobotomized Martin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jigertz View Post
    I ordered The Strain from another online store/publisher after it was sold out at Lonely Road. I ordered The Fall from the same store so that I could match my number. Basically, the owner said he would contact Brian for an update, probably hoping that if he could tell me when it would be published, I would not want to cancel.

    We did resolve the issue though. He just needs a couple weeks to make the refund. I feel sort of bad, but I guess that's just how business works.
    Glad they are taking care of you. You have nothing to feel bad for!

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    Senior Member Starting to Drool Incessantly frik51's Avatar
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    Well...I did send a request for a cancellation for a couple of orders - four actually.
    I just can't afford these books any longer.
    I sent two e-mails, about one week apart, but so far I haven't received a reaction yet.
    This made me wonder.....Am I crossing the line anywhere? But then I would appreciate being told I did.
    Also, I'm a pretty loyal customer of this publisher, having ordered for literally thousands of dollars in the past - and still having quite a few books on order.
    I'm a bit hesitant sending a third e-mail...

    Suggestions anyone??
    (And yes, unfortunately I'm talking about my (and yours, I think) favorite small-press publisher....)

    sk

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    Senior Member 1st Rubber Room Confinement mhatchett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frik51 View Post
    Well...I did send a request for a cancellation for a couple of orders - four actually.
    I just can't afford these books any longer.
    I sent two e-mails, about one week apart, but so far I haven't received a reaction yet.
    This made me wonder.....Am I crossing the line anywhere? But then I would appreciate being told I did.
    Also, I'm a pretty loyal customer of this publisher, having ordered for literally thousands of dollars in the past - and still having quite a few books on order.
    I'm a bit hesitant sending a third e-mail...

    Suggestions anyone??
    (And yes, unfortunately I'm talking about my (and yours, I think) favorite small-press publisher....)

    sk
    I think it's natural to feel a little uncomfortable about having to cancel pre-orders, after all, it is a commitment and I think most of us take our commitments/obligations seriously. That feeling is of course compounded by the fact that we actually feel a meaningful connection with the publishers, who shall remain nameless, that we buy and interact with. Having said that, sometimes a man has to do, what a man has to do, money at times, can be too tight to mention. I'm sure someone will step in and pick up the slack. Hopefully no one will take a money decision personally and all your future purchases will arrive with the very last page ripped oit LOl!!

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    Senior Member Receiving Daily Medication jhanic's Avatar
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    I had a slightly different scenario--I ordered a book from a well-known dealer but forgot that I had ordered it. I then ordered the same book from the publisher. I contacted the first seller and asked him if it would be okay if I canceled that order. He answered that it would be an inconvenience for him, so I now have two of the same book. He was honest in his assessment and I respected that.

    John

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    Senior Member 1st Electroshock Session bsaenz24's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhanic View Post
    I had a slightly different scenario--I ordered a book from a well-known dealer but forgot that I had ordered it. I then ordered the same book from the publisher. I contacted the first seller and asked him if it would be okay if I canceled that order. He answered that it would be an inconvenience for him, so I now have two of the same book. He was honest in his assessment and I respected that.

    John
    The honesty is fine, but I don't see why he could not cancel/refund the order.

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    Administrator Ok, I really can't come up with anymore of these stupid things... Brian James Freeman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frik51 View Post
    Well...I did send a request for a cancellation for a couple of orders - four actually.
    I just can't afford these books any longer.
    I sent two e-mails, about one week apart, but so far I haven't received a reaction yet.
    This made me wonder.....Am I crossing the line anywhere? But then I would appreciate being told I did.
    Also, I'm a pretty loyal customer of this publisher, having ordered for literally thousands of dollars in the past - and still having quite a few books on order.
    I'm a bit hesitant sending a third e-mail...

    Suggestions anyone??
    (And yes, unfortunately I'm talking about my (and yours, I think) favorite small-press publisher....)

    sk
    If you emailed Mindy, you may not have heard back yet because she's on vacation this week and limiting her email access to the evening hours. I'm sure you'll hear back next week. If it's urgent and you need the money right away, please drop me a line and I'll see if I can do anything in the meantime.

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    Senior Member Starting to Drool Incessantly frik51's Avatar
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    Wow, Brian, I was just thinking about contacting you.
    I feel awfully bad about this, but for the moment really have no other option.
    Appreciate your input! And I'll hang in there for another couple of days....

    Siep

  13. #13
    Administrator Ok, I really can't come up with anymore of these stupid things... Brian James Freeman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frik51 View Post
    Wow, Brian, I was just thinking about contacting you.
    I feel awfully bad about this, but for the moment really have no other option.
    Appreciate your input! And I'll hang in there for another couple of days....

    Siep
    Absolutely, not a problem and we totally understand. I'll send Mindy a note right now, so she can confirm your emails ARE in her inbox. If they are not, I'll send you a message and get the order info, so we can move this along before she gets back!

    Brian
    Brian James Freeman
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    Senior Member Lobotomized Martin's Avatar
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    John,
    In my view the fact that they were honest with were honest with you is nice but does not take away the fact that if you pre-order something and wish to cancel it then you should be able to do that. The fact that they have an extra copy available is part of the cost of doing business in my opinion. I am a very patient customer and have been waiting a long time for some of my pre-orders. If I decide to cancel one of those orders and was told my needs were inconvenient to the seller it would not sit well with me.

    Siep,
    I think two two emails, over two weeks, is enough that you should not think twice about escalating to another person to get a response. We all know that the employees at a small press can get inundated, they are often the only line of defense and when they are away it can take a while to get back due to the shear volume of messages. With that said customers deserve responses in a timely manner, even if that is just an automated message stating when to expect a reply.

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    Senior Member 1st Rubber Room Confinement mhatchett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhanic View Post
    I had a slightly different scenario--I ordered a book from a well-known dealer but forgot that I had ordered it. I then ordered the same book from the publisher. I contacted the first seller and asked him if it would be okay if I canceled that order. He answered that it would be an inconvenience for him, so I now have two of the same book. He was honest in his assessment and I respected that.

    John
    I have "Eaten" a book for that very reason, I felt it was my fault, but I was able to turn around and sell the additional book, so it worked out.

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