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Signed Books - International Edition

Ever since the Jean Cocteau Cinema began offering autographed books from our author events for sale via mailorder, we have been getting queries from readers in Europe, South America, Asia, Canada, Mexico, Australia, and New Zealand about placing orders. We haven't been able to fulfill those requests, alas. Up till now, books were only available within the US.

The problem is shipping. There is, unfortunately, no simple, easy, and inexpensive way to ship books (or anything else, alas) outside the US. Not any more. Once upon a time, a shipper could choose between air mail (fast but expensive) and sea mail (slow but cheap). Then sea mail got abolished. After that, for a time, there was a thing called an M-bag (slow but cheap). That got abolished too. Within the US, there is Media Mail, formerly known as Book Rate, which saves a lot of money... but Media Mail does not work beyond the borders of the US. Internationally, there is only air mail... oh, and the various express services, like DHL and FedEx. So effectively the shipping options for our friends overseas are limited to Expensive and Very Expensive and Very Very Very Expensive (for overnight).



I've had my JCC staff working on this problem for many months, trying to find a solution. Sadly, there does not seem to be one. Yet even so, the queries still come in. So we've decided to bite the bullet -- for a short time, at least, as an experiment -- and offer the signed books from the JCC bookstore for sale to everyone around the world. We'll see how much demand there is, and how much time order fulfillment requires from my already overworked staff.



But please take note. The process is complicated and onerous, and shipping costs will be high. In many cases, depending on what you're ordering, shipping will be more than the actual cost of the books themselves. ALSO, please note, there could be additional charges on your end. We have no control over taxes, tariffs, customs costs, and import duties. Every nation has its own rules. Once the shipment leaves the Jean Cocteau, it's out of our hand... so if your customs people stop the package and ask for fees, there's nothing we can do about it.

((All these problems are among the reasons why we have not been taking international orders up until now. Too many complications, too many complaints)).

So... if I haven't discouraged all of you sufficiently, here's the complex and expensive procedure for placing orders from outside the USA:

1. Guest selects item(s) from the JCC website. http://www.jeancocteaubooks.com/

2. Guest has to email: jeancocteausantafe@gmail.com. The email should contain the following: item(s), and destination.



3. JCC will review the order and weigh the item(s)

4. JCC will enter destination, weight, value, dimensions of shipping box on USPS website to get the shipping cost. Unless instructed to use FedEx of DHL or other more expensive method, we will always look for the cheapest method.



5. JCC will email the guest with the total cost of the order (books, shipping, handling).

6. If the guest agrees, JCC will invoice him/ her via PayPal. PayPal is the ONLY payment method we can accept for international orders, sorry.



7. Guest pays invoice.

8. Books are shipped.



All of the books pictured above are available, along with many more. Visit the Jean Cocteau website for the full list. Stocks are limited, however. We do sell out.

ALL the books sold by the JCC are signed by the author and/or editor. Some of the anthologies and Wild Cards books have multiple autographs, though we cannot guarantee that. However, we cannot offer personalizations or inscriptions. Just signatures.

At the moment, we are only offering English-language editions... but if this system does not prove too costly for the readers, or too burdersome for my staff, we may be able to offer limited amounts of foreign language editions and translations in the future. Watch this blog for announcements to that effect from my minions. (And if you are looking for one of my books in a specific language, feel free to write the JCC at the email above and request it. We may have some).



We know this system if far from ideal, and for that we apologize... but we wanted to do something to show that we do value all the readers around the world who have written us, and would like to do our best to serve them.

Happy reading.

Comments

( 33 comments — Leave a comment )
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Rachel Carvalho
Jun. 18th, 2016 10:47 pm (UTC)
Shopify
I don't know if you or your staff considered using Shopify to set up an online store, they seem to help with international shipping and payments, it could be useful.

PS: I tried to post a link before but it was marked as spam haha, it's really not, I just want to see you guys selling signed books to us mortals living outside the US :)

Edited at 2016-06-18 10:48 pm (UTC)
ryancampbell
Jun. 20th, 2016 07:11 am (UTC)
Re: Shopify
Shoplocket is another good option.
Leonardo Beduschi
Jun. 18th, 2016 11:03 pm (UTC)
Thank you
It's really a great idea, thanks Sor!
Dan Koifman
Jun. 18th, 2016 11:59 pm (UTC)
Did you know that Amazon Fulfillment can warehouse and manage shipping for both US and international orders?

The Cocteau could still take the online orders on the current website but instead of having to personally pack and them, once they get an order on the Cocteau site, a staff member could go onto a separate Amazon Services page to have Amazon Services take care of the shipping to over 75 countries.

You will have tracking, postage and insurance all taken care of quickly and easily. Maybe it could make your alien and the monkey on your back a little less frustrated :)

This is not having a storefront on Amazon where you are selling signed books in direct competition against your own books. This is a completely separate hiring of Amazon as your back-end warehousing and shipping service. You have all your orders taken from the Cocteau's site.

Today Amazon.com makes less money selling things on their website to consumers than they do renting out their own warehouses and servers for use by other companies. It's kind of crazy.

Here is Amazon's warehouse site:

Amazon Fulfillment Services
https://services.amazon.com/global-selling/fulfillment-overview.htm

Edited at 2016-06-19 02:26 am (UTC)
TweeEeest
Jun. 19th, 2016 12:43 am (UTC)
Isn't there a way of selling it through Amazon? I'm used to buy books from Amazon US without a problem or taxing (I live in Brazil and books are not taxed when imported).
aatishgopichand
Jun. 19th, 2016 03:04 am (UTC)
Valar Dohaeris
All Minions Must Serve!
Sandra Lopez Zodiaco
Jun. 19th, 2016 03:53 am (UTC)
Sea mail still exists, as far as I know
I bought something last year from Canada and they shipped it via sea mail to Europe, so it definitely still exists.
grrm
Jun. 19th, 2016 07:30 pm (UTC)
Re: Sea mail still exists, as far as I know
Santa Fe is not in Canada.
kzarraltair
Jun. 19th, 2016 06:19 am (UTC)
This is great news for us international readers. Thank you George and minions for taking the time to do this for us. I'll happily pay the extra costs for a singed copy from mr. Martin.
f4f3
Jun. 19th, 2016 10:04 am (UTC)
Hello from Scotland: Hell, I feel more valued - even if I don't use the option, I feel more valued :)
gonzo21
Jun. 19th, 2016 11:03 am (UTC)
An American website I buy things from sometimes just introduced a new lower rate of shipping for international orders which is ~incredibly~ competitive. It recently cost me just $8 to get an order delivered here. Which okay, was maybe not as heavy as a book, but it was so much cheaper than international shipping had ever been before.

You can read about it here:

http://www.miniaturemarket.com/lowerinternationalshipping


Over the past five years we have seen our international business decrease due to higher and higher shipping costs. Every year the United States Postal Service keeps raising its rates and there was nothing we could do about it …. until today!

We are proud to announce a new service from FedEx called FIMS (FedEx International Mail Service). Unlike the United States Postal Service, FedEx bills Miniature Market daily for the total weight of all packages we ship worldwide regardless of which country they ship to. What does this mean for you? Lower prices!



I think it might be worth having a minion look into what the requirements for getting access to the FedEx FIMS program might be, and what the average cost of a books weight might be via it?
venusandbast
Jun. 19th, 2016 11:15 am (UTC)
Mail forwarder for customers in the Philippines
Hi GRRM! If you have customers living in the Philippines, they may want to try "LBC Shipping Cart". It's a forwarding service that provides customers with a US address-- the LBC warehouse-- that they can use for online shopping in the US. Their packages are shipped to the LBC warehouse, then LBC takes care of getting the packages to the Philippines (through customs and all) and straight to the customer's doorstep. They offer both air and sea shipping options. It's pretty neat! I've already had several packages shipped from the US, to me in Manila, this way. LBC is one of the leading couriers here in the Philippines, so they are quite reliable. There are other similar services here in the Philippines but so far I've only tried LBC.

Perhaps other countries have similar services too.

(I'm not associated with LBC in any way, nor am I paid to endorse them, I'm just a happy customer.)
jacobsb2440
Jun. 19th, 2016 02:29 pm (UTC)
When you're frustrated just take a power nap and have a pleasant "Dream of Spring." If the nap goes well and you're up to it, you could jot down a simple 1500+page manuscript about it. I'm sure it'd be like a form of therapy.

I also had a humorous discussion with friends about Tyrion this week. If he were born a Tyrell imagine the witty sarcastic puns/jokes he could use with the words "Growing Strong" He'd be a walking Viagra add.

Lastly I picture Clive James Standen from Vikings as my Victarion. He's perfect for the role that was never casted.
Frank Probst
Jun. 19th, 2016 07:53 pm (UTC)
Guadalajara International Book Fair
Kind of off-topic, but since we're talking about international readers, I figured I'd ask. You've got the Guadalajara International Book Fair on your touring schedule for December. I can't find anything about your appearance on their website. Do you know what your schedule will be like there? It doesn't look like a regular SF/F con to me, and I'm not quite sure what to expect.
grrm
Jun. 20th, 2016 05:35 pm (UTC)
Re: Guadalajara International Book Fair
It is not a con, it's a book fair. Very very different sort of event.

I've never been before, so I don't know what to expect either.

And I have three other events before that one, so I doubt that I'll a day by day schedule any time soon.
Andrada Romagno
Jun. 20th, 2016 06:54 am (UTC)
Thank you!
This is such an amazing initiative, thank you for giving it a try!

I live in Qatar and there are barely any bookstores here, so I buy my books mostly online. Never had issues with customs or extra fees, so I'll gladly pay extra for shipping.

I just bought Robin Hobb's "Royal Assassin" for a friend of mine, same friend who convinced me years ago to read "A Song of Ice and Fire".

She started your series when only the first two books were out and she's patiently waiting for the next one, while doing a whole Robin Hobb re-read :)
naath
Jun. 20th, 2016 09:25 am (UTC)
There are signed books for which the shipping is Worth It (not many, but some). But yes, often more than the cost of the books; and delayed by customs.

I got some Sanderson books shipped in flat-rate UPS boxes, which was apparently a better deal than weighed mail. (from his local store).
Bernhard Vienna
Jun. 20th, 2016 09:57 am (UTC)
Amazon?
Why not sell it over Amazon and let them handle the shipping?

I often buy books and DVDs from Amazon Japan and from Amazon.com. I don't remember the price from America but from Japan it costs about 7 Euro per parcel.
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