We’re Making Bookplates Because Amazon Doesn’t Work in Switzerland. (aka The Amazon Paper Book Saga)

Most folks that talk to me on the regular have heard me rant about how Amazon doesn’t work in Switzerland. I don’t fully understand why, but from what I do understand it stems from the way Switzerland deals with VAT (shipping taxes) and other legislation that passed here that Amazon didn’t like. So Amazon noped out of shipping pretty much anything at all to Switzerland. 

For reals. If you look up anything on the Amazon.de site with a Swiss address, 99% of the time it will say “This item does not ship to Switzerland.” Or, it might look like it does, then you go to check out, and find out they won’t when you try to pay for it. *sigh*

This leads me to why I won’t be doing any more signed paper copies for the foreseeable future.

I’ll preface this explanation by saying I absolutely DO NOT regret getting the paper copies to give away during my release party on Twitch. I’d been planning to do that for months. (Those copies are now on their way to the winners!)

Getting those copies was a pain in the ass, though. 

The biggest problem is that Amazon does not allow me to buy author/proof copies here. Author/proof copies are usually printed for the author at cost and you can normally get them before you make the book go live. But because I live in Switzerland, if I want to buy author copies, I have to buy them through the Amazon.com site, ship them to my parents, then have my parents ship them here. For the giveaways, because we ran out of time, we ended having to publish the paper version, buy them at full cost from Amazon.de, send them to a 3rd party shipper in Germany who then sent the books to us (for a fee, of course).

If you’re thinking that’s a lot of money, you’re right. Shipping them out again is just as expensive, if not more. I managed to keep the cost of shipping down for the prize books because I went through the Swiss Post. However, there’s no tracking, and I had to bring all the books to the Post Office to drop off because Swiss Post doesn’t do home pickup for international packages. (You also can’t just put letters in your mailbox for the Postal Carrier to pick up, either, which is irritating. Thankfully the Post box for letters isn’t too far from my house and I don’t mind the walk.)

DHL, FedEx or other carriers aren’t an option, because they want a little over 200 CHF (about the same in dollars) to ship just 1 book. And that was the cheapest shipping option. *sighs again*

I know there’s a number of you who would like signed paper copies, and I really wish I could, but it’s just not going to be a feasible thing. (Although, if you ever see me in person and happen to have your book or books with you, I will be more than happy to sign them!)

BUT! My lovely friend Denise suggested that we do bookplates, and the Wife and I thought that was an excellent idea (Thank you, Denise!). The Wife is also getting into lino/block printing, and offered to make handmade bookplates for the launch. 

Here’s how it will work:

  1. If you bought, or will buy, a paper copy of my book between February 1 through February 28, email me through the Email page and let me know how many bookplates you want and if you want something special written on them.
  2. Limit is 4 per person.
  3. Include your snail mail address in the email.
  4. The Wife will create the bookplates in March and I will sign them all.
  5. The bookplates will be mailed out around the end of March or beginning of April. 

These will only be available for this launch, so they are limited edition and will be numbered. We’ll have pictures of the design around mid-March. 

We hope you’ll like them, and trust me, from the design that The Wife showed me today, they are going to be really cool!

Thank you everyone for your most awesome support and understanding! You are the best! 🙂

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