I’m sad to say that I’ve met authors that will tell you anything to make a sale. If you only read X, well, they’ll say their book has X in it even when it doesn’t. To them a sale is a sale, and that’s a win. Maybe if you only have one book in you, this is a good strategy. But if you are interested in a career, this is a bad idea.
I bought a book that promised to be a cozy mystery with ghosts. I was targeted accurately via advertising and my purchase history and I bought it. I was excited. Here were two of my favorite genres blended together. I was eager to start. Well, the mystery was solved in chapter 3, and the ghosts were a secondary plot that barely showed up. There was a paranormal element but that was about it.
I was disappointed to say the least. I’d been lied to, and I didn’t like it. Imagine my reaction when I saw 3 more books by this author with the same targeted advertising. And I didn’t buy one of them. Not one. And it wasn’t because the story was bad or the writing horrible. Both were good.
But I had been deceived. I purchased one thing and got another.
And that author lost a reader, one who could have put them on an auto buy list. Instead, they’re on my never buy list.
Sadly, this type of behavior isn’t limited to writers.
I recently had my credit card number stolen. The thief went to town on the internet, ordering lots of goodies and had pizza delivered. The pizza company said they would take care of it, then claimed it was a valid charge and provided pages of documentation. Including a receipt with a signature that didn’t even look like mine on a card that was manually entered in a state I hadn’t been to since 1991 and wasn’t from the account I had with the company.
To add insult to injury, they ordered a vile quasi-soda that wasn’t my beloved Dr. Pepper and I wouldn’t drink unless it was diluted with ice cream and punch, or I was trying to signal to someone that I was kidnapped.
I didn’t blame the company. They had safeguards in place, but despite my conversation with them, the case I laid out to explain this wasn’t my charge, the company considered it valid.
In other words, I was a liar. I’m sure to them it was just business, but that insult was personal. And now, I won’t be buying anything from them. So this business decision cost them not just the fraud charge but the hundreds of dollars I spend every year.
Until next time.