As some of my regular readers of my Chaos Fairy blog know, if things can go wrong, they will.
I initially started off my first venture into self-publishing with the publishing platform BookBaby. Let’s just say, that it was a typically disastrous Chaos Fairy experience, and leave it at that. I was really disheartened after that experience, and was faced with a decision about committing to CreateSpace over another, more expensive option. So, as my poetry book is my trial venture into all the fiddly bits that go into publishing a book, I finally opted to use CreateSpace. I was nervous, because there were a lot of negative reviews about CreateSpace online. Still, economics was the deciding factor, as I found the price to publish my book was way cheaper than the original quote I had from BookBaby.
From the get-go, CreateSpace was incredibly professional and knowledgeable. During the process of getting the initial quote, I found communicating with the customer service representative to be so much easier and straightforward. We were totally on the same page in regards to the book’s goals (that the poetry book would be my dry run into self-publishing). They totally got everything I was trying to achieve without me having to explain, argue, and defend myself a hundred times.
They continued to provide the same level of exceptional customer service and professionalism throughout the (still ongoing) design and completion process. They provided me with samples so I could visualize the fonts in question. They were so patient and supportive in walking me through the design process and the changes needed. Furthermore, they were completely respectful in making sure the erroneous details I had noticed during the changes process were noted and fixed.
Plus, CreateSpace provided a free round of changes in case I was an idiot and missed something (even with my keen editorial eye), or something didn’t look quite right in the actual layout. All of this was done with COMPLETELY NO HASSLE! If there was something that went wrong with their design and layout issue–discrepancies, or other technical and design issues and layout, they fixed it. No problems, no runaround, no excuses. This has never happened to date in the Chaos Fairy’s memory. Ever. In fact, it’s a rare occurrence in customer service experiences, in general, these days. Where everyone had a reason why it’s your fault, not theirs, and companies have adopted a zero accountability policy. Not to mention the loop they put you through in automated purgatory before you even get to talk to a real person. That is, if you ever get to talk to a person at all, much less one willing to help you resolve the issue. (I think the tactic is to make you give up and go away, actually.) With CreateSpace, I get to talk to a real, live person each time there’s an issue, and they are completely willing to listen and help you resolve the issue to ensure you are happy with your publishing project. They were consistently helpful, and always professional.
One of the complaints I read about online, regarding CreateSpace, was that the books arrived with messy glue, and with extensive book damage due to shipping. And that the books were printed in mismatching hues on the front cover. While I can’t comment on that, as I haven’t received my final books, yet, I did receive a printed, bound proof for the interior. So far, so good. No messy glue, no book damage. We’ll see how the final project turns out, as I haven’t seen the cover in the final printed form yet. But I have no worries. Even if there’s something awry, CreateSpace has shown they will fix the problem to my satisfaction.
This customer service experience was so novel to me, that I wanted to cry. To send their staffers that helped a big bunch of flowers or edible fruit bouquets, or something. I’m so used to being put down, dismissed, ignored, mocked, treated with disrespect, and, as a result, having to go out and wage total war just to be heard. Car mechanics, staff at grocery stores, in the workplace, or even on the behalf of my pets or my own health, via dismissive veterinarians and doctors.
So, I just wanted to give some well-earned praise to CreateSpace and all their (incredibly patient) wonderful customer service representatives and staff, as well as the design team. You’ve managed to break the Chaos Fairy Curse! Thank you for making my life a little bit easier!