Something-New-Sunday~~An Announcement of Sorts

I’ve never made an announcement for another author on my blog such as this, so it IS something new! But, I felt this was important as if there are any of you who might have purchased this book, you’ll know what to expect and if you have not, but if you ever get this sort of email from Amazon for a book you have purchased you’ll understand it and know what to do with it.

The short of it is, and I’ll post her words below, but here it is a nutshell:

An author named Jamie McGuire self-published her book Beautiful Disaster (this is normal, self-publishing on Amazon is what I do, too) and this book was later picked up by a publisher (also possible, not the norm, but possible).

Now that a publisher has bought her rights, and republished the book, Amazon has sent out mass emails to everyone who’d purchased a copy of the self-published version at 3.99 offering them a full refund, plus the difference of what the old copy cost and the price that the publisher is charging: $7.99. But Amazon is not the one paying this, the author is. Just to give you an idea, she is now paying $8 to anyone who requests a refund, even though she only earned $2.75 on each of those sales in the first place. Where is the money coming from? It is being deducted from book sales she’s earning on her other books that she’s self-publishing.

Is it necessary to return the book and get a refund? Absolutely not. Amazon Customer Service has confirmed that if you bought the self-published version it will stay on your device and in your virtual library. It will not go away.

So, the author, and understandably so, is asking that if you bought a copy of her book Beautiful Disaster that you not request a refund/return it. There is nothing wrong with your copy.

Here are her own words in a note she posted to Facebook last night:

I have looked into this as best I can, but being a Saturday, Amazon isn’t responding.

It appears that Amazon has sent a mass email to everyone who’s ever purchased the self-published version of Beautiful Disaster. They are encouraging readers to request a refund. When asked why they are offering this refund, Amazon customer service has given several different reasons, the most common is problems with content. THERE IS NO PROBLEM WITH THE CONTENT OF BEAUTIFUL DISASTER, and it makes no sense for them to encourage a refund for a book that has already been read and enjoyed 6+ months later, but that is the only information I have for now.

Customer service admits that if you do NOT get the refund, your copy of BD will NOT be affected. If you get a refund, they are offering to reimburse the $4+ difference it costs to purchase the $7.99 version, but what they aren’t telling you is that **I** am paying for every refund.

Last week, I sent an email to Amazon asking why the self-published version of my book is still experiencing returns. Returns are only allowed for up to 7 days after purchase. 6 months after the self-published version of Beautiful Disaster went off-sale my account was still seeing negative amounts for returns. I’m not going to assume the reasons behind this mass email, but it appears that Amazon customer service is now encouraging these returns.

I was not notified of this. This email has nothing to do with my publisher Atria books. If you do not get a refund, your copy of BD will not be affected. If you do, the refund will show as a negative amount in my Amazon KDP author account. Because BD is no longer available, this money will be taken out of my Providence sales.

In other words, this is very bad, and I have no idea why this is happening. Please do not return your copy of BD, and please help me spread the word to not return your copy of BD.

I will let you know what else I find out from Amazon. In the meantime, your support has brought me to tears. I love you all. ♥

Could this happen with other books? I guess so. I never thought about it before as I’d never heard of it happening. But it could, so even if you do not have this particular book, and you get some sort of email from Amazon about returns and refunds, please remember this. Also, if you did buy this book, I’d encourage you not to return it and if you know anyone else who might have a copy, let them know what’s going on, too, please.




16 thoughts on “Something-New-Sunday~~An Announcement of Sorts”

    1. Sadly, I don’t think all of her true fans know NOT to request the refund. The percentage of people who are still in reach for an author to put this in front of is really small compared to the possible percentage who might have bought the book, even if they did enjoy it, they might not have followed or subscribed to a mailing list etc.

      The number who could have bought (and potentially return) her book is overwhelming and heartbreaking to think of.

      Your thoughts are the same as mine as I’d only be able to rely on God’s strength to get me through if something like this were to happen to my books.

    1. I don’t like it, either, and the chances that anyone who follows me bought this book are slim, but you never know. I just wanted people to be aware and if they had bought it, not to request the refund or heaven forbid something like this ever happens with one of MY books.

    1. I have no idea. The Net has turned into a huge firestorm about this today. I feel bad for her, but it makes me more careful to read everything I’m agreeing to when I upload a book over there now. I knew they could force you to repay them back royalties if you’d selected the 70% when your book only qualified for the 35%, but I didn’t know this could happen.

  1. That’s awful! I’ve never had them suggest that I return an eBook. I didn’t even know you could. I can’t image why I would either. Now that I know about that, I definitely won’t if they ask. I’ve found that I prefer books by self-published authors anywhere.

    1. You can return eBooks, but usually not after so long and I’ve NEVER heard of Amazon encouraging it.

      I’m glad you like us self-publishers. We certainly have the freedom to make the story as long or as short as we want and go in whichever direction we want. A total blessing. Except in this particular case.

  2. To me this sounds like another case of corporate giants trying to rule the world!

    As I sat here reading about this it also made me wonder what the readers that “returned” Beautiful Disaster were thinking about when they “returned” the original!

    1. I have no idea. I almost wonder if any of them will even buy it again at the higher price. They’re not being forced to, and even if they do, the author still will not recoup the amount of money she’s being forced to pay.

  3. This is just horrible. Shame on you, Amazon! This almost doesn’t even sound legal. And other authors have asked me why I don’t do KDP Select! It’s because I don’t want to depend on Amazon exclusively, especially when they pull something like this. There’s no telling what they’ll do next.

    Incidentally, I wouldn’t return a book on Amazon’s suggestion. It just sounds fishy.

    1. I’ve been against KDP Select from the day it was presented. I’m a businesswoman and at the end of the day, I don’t want all of my eggs in one basket. Just this past week, I’ve had some real problems with Amazon. Just out of nowhere my top three books fell like bricks. Not even flatlined, just tumbled. I have no idea why. I did nothing new nor did I discontinue anything I’d been doing, they just fell.

      My point is, I don’t want to rely on any one store for my income. I’ve been at this long enough to notice cycles and believe me, everything cycles.

      LOL I wouldn’t return a book at their suggestion, either. But then again, if I got an email that was telling me I could have $8 to return a book, and I don’t know where that 8 is coming from, I might be curious.

  4. I love your books and can’t wait for His Brother’s Bride.

    Just in case anyone is curious about what the email from Amazon looks like (see below).

    I hate to see any authors having to go through what Jamie McGuire is going through, so if you see an email like below I encourage you do some research like I did before going forward with requesting a refund. No, I did not request a refund.

    “Hello from Amazon.com,

    We want to let you know that the edition of Beautiful Disaster that you purchased is no longer available. You can order a new version that is now available here:

    You can also request a refund on your original purchase by responding to this email. After the refund is issued, you will no longer be able to access this item.

    Thank you,

    The Kindle Team”

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