Hating the USPS

Let me start by saying that I have been a proponent of the USPS for years. The service is cheap, reliable and they go everyone in the US.

I’ve had a few incidents in the past couple of years (most notably an entire shipment — 12 packages — that NEVER arrived at their destinations) that made me doubt, but I didn’t give up. Today was over the top.

About a week ago, I sent one of my Facing North reviewers, Patricia Snodgrass*, a package of five books, USPS, media mail. It’s slow, but cheap — and FN doesn’t make money, its all out of pocket. Today I got home to three emails from her:

subject: The postmonster ate your package

Good Morning, Lisa
I received the package for the books but the envelope was torn open and the contents were gone.
I am so sorry.
this has been such a shitty month.
The envelope has media mail subject to inspection written on it. The envelope was obviously cut open.  I’m sure the contents were tossed.
Hi Lisa
I’m tracking the books from my end.  Do you recall the titles?
For the record, the books were: Inner Alchemy, The Four Powers, Handbook for the Spirit, Choosing to Love the World, and Wealth: Titania’s Wishing Spells. All of which Pat was REALLY looking forward to reading.
So we have a multiplicity of shittiness here. Pat’s disappointment, the publishers who are out of stock and don’t even get a review to show for their loss, the authors, who are out both payment AND publicity, and me, who is out of pocket. Not to mention that I am now facing an annoying, but necessary series of conversations with lifelong bureaucrats who will, most likely, say ‘if you didn’t insure it, or track it, there is nothing we can do.’
It really looks like someone ‘inspected’ the package — which is fine, they were all books (i.e. media) — and then THREW the contents away. What a crock of feces.

3 thoughts on “Hating the USPS

  1. Lupa

    Hey–email the reviewer and ask her to send me her address. I’ll send replacement copies.

    I’m wondering if the info sheets in the books were the culprits, though I didn’t know that their “media-only, no letters” policy was THAT strict. Either that, or someone not affiliated with the post office simply decided to steal them.

  2. Lupa

    Oooh, also, FFR, if you want, I can just mail you a list of books we have available for review, you can toss the titles out to your list of reviewers, and then have the reviewers contact me with their addresses when and as they request books. That way you’re not having to pay to send even more books, and I’m just spending money I would anyway. I’m guessing you don’t absolutely have to see the books in person for this process.

  3. lisa Post author

    Lupa, that would be grand — I’ll have her contact you tonight. Btw, I NEVER include the info sheets, I usually need them to contact the publishers once I have the review in hand. I’m strongly considering this an act of discrimination.

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