Monday 30 September 2019

Another Bump in the Writer's Road

How fondly I look back on those happy, carefree days when I was still writing my book. It's been an uphill struggle ever since – first, getting it into book shape and print ready, and now, having achieved that, trying to get Amazon to do the heavy lifting for me. Despite being an all too frequent Amazon buyer, I cannot, it seems, become an Amazon seller. To establish my identity (as if they didn't know it already) I had to supply scans of my passport and a bank statement. Easy enough, you might think, but each attempt was rejected with the words 'could not verify' – and now, it seems, my time is up. I had a thoroughly discourteous message today telling me I could not be an Amazon seller, and any further communication on the subject would elicit no response on their part.
  So, what do I do now? I have the books, a hundred-plus of them, and it looks as if I'm going to have to become a freelance warehouseman if I want to shift them. Of course I've no idea what the demand is likely to be – I could end up with half of them unsold, in which case I wouldn't have much of a problem shipping the sold ones myself. But if there's a more substantial demand, I could be looking at a time-consuming and rather laborious job (might have to refresh my fork-lift truck skills). Are there any alternatives? Could I get anyone else to take these books off my hands and flog them for me (for a percentage)?
 Whatever happens, I'm doing nothing just yet. It can wait till after I get back from France (I'm off again on Wednesday), and then I'll announce the book to the waiting world. Meanwhile, if anyone's got any bright ideas, they'd be very welcome...


  1. Identify another retailer that might be interested in offering them? For example, English Heritage?The National Trust? They have mail order catalogues offering unusual gifts for Xmas etc, why not your book? The V&A was another thought I had, courier the whole lot to their posh shop in Kensington.. otherwise, is there such a thing as an independent booksellers association. These are the only ideas I have had short of appealing Amazon’s decision or setting up an eBay seller account (I do t recommend these thoughts).

  2. I want one. I live in the U.S.

  3. Have you looked into Alibris? ( I have bought from Alibris but never sold, for I don't imagine I'd cover the $20 annual fee.

  4. Thank you all. My problem is essentially with what Amazon charmingly calls 'fulfilment' – i.e. packing and shipping and dealing with payments. Happily it might soon be resolved, thanks to a kind friend (although US sales might have to be handled separately). I'll keep you posted. Fingers crossed it will be good news next time.
    (Karen, thanks for the English Heritage/ Nat Trust suggestion – those two hadn't occurred to me, but I have my eye on a few other such outlets...)

  5. Dear sir Nigeness.Blogs, I live in a dull part of south London (which is pretty damn dull compared to The Glades back home), but I notice you got a lot of markets here. The one which I like best is in your Eats Street in north south London. All you need is a wheelbarrow, pile your books up and your in business. Ought to sell like hot bagels in a New York autumn.

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